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NFL Football Betting – Jacksonville at Houston
NOTABLE STAT: Houston averages 26.3 ppg at home
KEY NFL FOOTBALL BETTING TREND: Jacksonville has played nine straight “overs”
The Jacksonville Jaguars (11-4 SU & ATS) have the #5 seed in the AFC playoffs locked up, as they travel to Reliant Stadium in Houston (grass) to play the Texans (7-8 SU & ATS), who will be trying to get to the .500 mark for the first time in their history.
In the Top Sportsbooks NFL betting odds, Houston is listed at -6 with the total posted at 41 points.
First, let’s take a look at the TOTALS-RELATED pro football stats and betting trends concerning this matchup:
* JAX has played nine straight games OVER the total
* JAX has played 11 of its 15 games OVER the total this season
* JAX has played 15 of its last 20 games OVER the total
* JAX has played its last five road games OVER the total
* HOU has played three of its last four games OVER the total
* HOU is 12-7-1 to the OVER in its last 20 games
* Six of the last eight meetings have gone UNDER the total
Obviously the trends point in a certain direction here. And even though the speculation is that, since J-Ville has locked up the #5 playoff spot, David Garrard (64%, 18 TD’s, 3 INT’s) will play about half this game before giving way to Quinn Gray (54%, 6 TD’s, 5 INT’s), the Jaguars’ current streak of nine straight “overs” can not be attributed solely to Garrard’s presence in the lineup. Jacksonville moves along because of its second-ranked rushing game, with Fred Taylor (1202 yards) and Maurice Jones-Drew (768 yards) doing most of the lifting. Taylor has one of the top yards-per-carry averages of any regular back (5.4 ypc). All of this means the offensive line is doing a tremendous job.
Jacksonville is not as potent on the defensive side when they travel. They are allowing just 14.2 points a game at home, but that figure is 21.1 ppg on the road. And Houston, in its second year under head coach Gary Kubiak, is productive at Reliant Stadium, scoring 26.3 points a contest. There will be incentive on the Texans’ sideline, too, because even though they are eliminated from playoff consideration, this is their opportunity to get to the .500 mark for the first time in the franchise’s brief history, which constitutes an important step. Sage Rosenfels has proven to be a capable backup for Matt Schaub. Rosenfels has completed 64% of his passes for 14 touchdowns, and if you recall, led that furious fourth-quarter rally when the Texans came back from 25 points down to Tennessee before losing. Without a dependable running game, he will be launching a lot of footballs into the air. And you can bet he’ll avail himself of Andre Johnson, who has 777 yards and eight receiving TD’s in only eight games.
These teams met in the sixth game of the season. Jacksonville won 37-17 at home, in a game where the teams combined to produce 847 yards and 48 first downs.
When analyzing these “meaningless” games in the last week of the season, the emphasis always seems to be on which offensive players won’t be in action and how that’s going to affect the total. But hey – in the last week of the season teams rest defensive players too.
At any rate, we’ll go with the trends and call for the game to go “over” the 41 points as posted in the Top Sportsbooks NFL betting odds.
NFL football betting odds: HOUSTON -6, Total: 41
NFL Free Pick: JAY’S PLAY: OVER 41
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