The Houston Texans travel to Cincinnati, Ohio, to take on the Cincinnati Bengals in the NFL’s Thursday Night game for Week 2. Both teams are coming off disappointing losses and look to get a much needed victory. Kickoff at Paul Brown Stadium is at 8:25 P.M. ET.
The Bengals (0-1) are coming off an embarrassing Week 1 loss to divisional rival Baltimore Ravens 20-0. Nothing went right for Cincinnati in this game, especially with starting quarterback Andy Dalton who had a terrible outing. Unfortunately, the Bengals are going to face another elite level defense in the Texans and could see more of the same offensive woes.
The Houston Texans (0-1) also lost to a divisional foe the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Texans, who were hoping to win one for the Houston region, fell behind early and couldn’t get anything going offensively. So, they benched starting quarterback Tom Savage for the rookie Deshaun Watson and immediately saw some life and gained momentum. Unfortunately, that momentum was squashed quickly as the Jaguars’ defense smothered Houston’s offense all day.
The spread opened with the Bengals as a 3 point favorite. The Over/Under opened at 38.5 total points.
Houston is 7-3 against the Bengals in the last 10 head-to-head meetings.
If you watched both games, you would’ve seen two of the most pathetic offensive performances of the week, other than the Colts. The Bengals couldn’t even score any points as their offensive line was dominated by the Ravens defensive line and blitz schemes. Cincinnati only totaled 221 yards for the game and were utterly dominated.
Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton was responsible for 5 turnovers, including 4 interceptions. He finished the game with 170 total passing yards on 16-of-31 passes. The Bengals didn’t fare any better on the ground as the Ravens held them to 77 total rushing yards on 22 carries. This abysmal output can be attributed to a solid Ravens defense and a poor performance by the combination of the Bengals o-line and quarterback.
Unfortunately for the Bengals, JJ Watt and the elite Texans defense come to town looking to feast on some feline carcasses. Despite giving up only 280 total yards to the Jaguars, Houston’s offense turned the ball over 4 times and just couldn’t get any sustainable offense. Their offensive line was also dominated by a ferocious Jaguars defense.
This contest will come down to which defensive front 7 can control the game by getting sacks and forcing turnovers. Neither offense was capable of any real rushing attack. Additionally, neither was able to have much success through the passing game. Both defenses will put pressure on the opposing quarterbacks and look to limit the elite receivers in this game. Fortunately, we aren’t looking to pick a winner in this game because the Under looks very tasty this week.
The Under is 6-3 in Houston’s last 9 games and 4-1 in Houston’s last 5 games against the Bengals. The Under is 4-1 in the last 5 Bengal home games and 5-0 in the last 5 overall games for Cincinnati.
With terrible play by Dalton and both of Houston’s quarterbacks, along with poor offensive line play, it’s hard to imagine either team scoring many points in this game. Additionally, despite their offenses turning the ball over 4 times or more, both the Bengals defense and Houston’s defense played solid football. You can expect this game to be a low-scoring defensive battle as both offenses search for some consistency and to limit their mistakes.