Patriots vs. Texans Preview And Prediction

The 10-2 New England Patriots travel to take on the 6-6 Houston Texans on Sunday Night Football. Both teams could use a win and it's a game with playoff implications. So who will come out on top? Here's our preview and prediction. 

Game Info: 

When: 8:30 p.m. ET

Where: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas


Spread: Patriots By 3 

What's At Stake: 

The Patriots have dropped two straight games and need a win to help their chances for a No. 1 seed. It's a three-way battle in the AFC for the top seed, although an injury to Andy Dalton might narrow it down to just Denver and New England. The Texans are in the race for the AFC South. The Colts' loss earlier today means the Texans can take the outright lead in the division. 

What They're Saying About The New England Patriots

Rob Gronkowski Expected To Play

LB Dont'a Hightower Won't Play

Coaches Know Brady Is Hit Way Too Much

What They're Saying About The Houston Texans

Brian Hoyer Has Been Strong In Red Zone

The Texans' Game Plan

RB Chris Polk's Increased Workload

Key To The Game: 

Can the Texans pressure Tom Brady? The way to stop Brady is to harass him in the pocket. The Texans will need J.J. Watt to at least hurry Brady. Sacks are welcome, but no necessary. Houston can't let Brady sit back and pick apart the defense. If that happens, the Patriots will cruise to a win. 

Prediction: Patriots Win 27-23

It's a close game, but Brady doesn't allow the Patriots to lose three straight. The return of Gronk helps, especially in the red zone. The Texans put up a fight, but they simply aren't as talented as the Patriots. Brady is a much better QB than Hoyer, and that proves to be a major difference in the outcome. 

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Related Topics: Patriots News, Texans News, Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, J.J. Watt