NFL Week 8 Preview: Texans’ surprise tilt and LA Rams rising star
Odds and storylines including Houston’s hot streak
A month is certainly a long time in Gridiron actrion. This time last month, Houston Texans were 0-3 and seemed set for a miserable season. Since then, they’ve been amongst the most impressive sides in the entire NFL.
Ahead of another big weekend of games, we take a look at that – and two other major talking points…
Can surprise package Houston Texans keep it up?
The Texans managed just four wins in the entire 2017 NFL Season, ending the campaign with a run of six successive losses. But having now won four games on the trot for the first time since November 2015, is it time to take them seriously?
It hasn’t been the toughest run of games, and the Texans have also needed Overtime to edge out Indianapolis Colts and Dallas Cowboys. But they’ve shown plenty of grit and flashes of excellence.
Wide Receiver DeAndre Hopkins is one of only three players to manage over 700 receiving yards so far this season, and has racked up four Touchdowns along the way. He could again be the difference as they host Miami Dolphins this weekend.
The Texans are firm favourites in the Money Line at 2/7, against a Dolphins side who have lost seven of their last eight on the road. The more ambitious Texans -11 handicap is a 5/4 shot.
Can Packers do anything to stop potential MVP Gurley?
Green Bay Packers have the second-best defensive record in the NFC North as it stands. But the Pack defence face their toughest test yet, in the shape of Los Angeles Rams and star running back Todd Gurley.
The 24-year-old tops the entire NFL for rushing yards with 686, but it’s his astonishing haul of 11 Touchdowns which really underline the 24-year-old’s importance to this 7-0 Rams side.
The Pack have been decent defensively, including a 22-0 win over Buffalo Bills at Lambeau Field. But they simply don’t have the steel to keep out a Rams side who’ve averaged 33.6 points per game this season.
With home advantage, it’s 13/10 for LA Rams to Score Over 35 Points in this game. Meanwhile, Sean McVay’s men are 4/7 on the -6 handicap in the Coliseum.
Seattle bidding to continue dominance of Lions
The Rams are almost certain to win the NFC West, so Seattle Seahawks are in the Wild Card hunt – and currently sit just one spot below those two elusive NFC spots.
Pete Carroll’s side have picked up after a slow start, following back-to-back losses to open the season with a run of three wins from four. That included a ruthless 27-3 win over Oakland Raiders at Wembley a fortnight ago.
So, can they boost their case for a Wild Card place at Ford Field this weekend?
The Seahawks have won five of their last six meetings with Detroit Lions, including a 26-6 victory last time the sides met in January 2017. For their part, the Lions are a high-scoring side who’ve struggled defensively.
This could be a very high-scoring game. The odds make it 13/10 for Over 52.5 Total Points. In the Money Line, Detroit are 4/7 favourites with 7/5 for a Seahawks win.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing