The Seattle Seahawks are 3-0 but are they really that good a team or did they just catch San Francisco at the right time and beat up on a couple of other weaklings? There might not be a lot of reasons to trust the Houston Texans in this matchup, but there are certainly ample reasons to doubt the Seahawks and their ability to perform consistently well – especially on the offensive side of the ball. This game is a lot harder to predict than a lot of pundits and experts might first think. The Seahawks struggled on the road in Carolina in Week 1 and are a three-point favorite on the NFL betting lines.
Seattle Seahawks @ Houston Texans
Sunday, September 29th – 1:00 PM ET
CenturyLink Field – Seattle, WA
NFL Odds: Seahawks -3
Why The Seahawks Can Cover The Spread:
They should be able to shut down Houston’s offense. Houston quarterback Matt Schaub simply has not impressed this season. Schaub slowed down in December and January of last season, as the Texans’ offense faltered and Houston failed to get a first-round bye in the AFC playoffs. So far this season, Schaub has not done anything to change the way he and his team are perceived in the NFL. Houston needed a bad call (a call the NFL office publicly acknowledged was incorrect) to push past the San Diego Chargers in their season opener on Sept. 9. The Texans trailed Tennessee by eight points late in the fourth quarter and needed a touchdown and a two-point conversion to tie the Titans in the final stages of regulation before winning in overtime. Last week, a banged-up and limited Baltimore team rocked Houston by a substantial margin, with Schaub and the rest of the offense flailing from start to finish. Seattle’s defense has been the anchor of the team’s identity and the central source of its success to this point in the season. The Seahawks don’t have to score 20 points to win this game. They can hold Houston to no more than 16 points and walk away with a narrow victory. Houston is fortunate to be 2-1 at this point in the season. The Texans – like any NFL team – can’t get away with playing that way for much longer. The laws of averages suggest that Houston will be in for a rude awakening unless or until it can substantially reshape the way it plays on offense.
Why The Texans Can Cover The Spread:
Their defense can limit Seattle’s offense to an even greater extent. Seattle’s defense should fare well in this game, but Houston’s defense should enjoy even more success. Remember that Seattle did not handle its first road trip of the season with much of any distinction on offense. The Seahawks scored 12 points against Carolina in a game played three time zones away from the Northwest. This game is two time zones away and is also an early kickoff (1 p.m. Eastern, noon local time in Houston). Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson has not really been all that good this early in the season. He has had trouble feeling pressure in the pocket, and that’s how turnovers occur. If you look at Seattle’s offense this season, the Seahawks have had two really good quarters this season, the third quarter against San Francisco in week two and the second quarter in Jacksonville in week three. Other than those quarters, though, Seattle’s offense has been rather pedestrian.
The Seahawks’ offense just isn’t as good as people think. Scoring 45 against most teams would be impressive, but scoring 45 against Jacksonville isn’t. Houston will punch Seattle in the mouth on defense and cause the Seahawks’ offense to have a very bad day. Take the Texans to cover the NFL spread.
Picks: Houston +3