Two playoff hopefuls face off in hopes to improve their playoff standing. The Eagles lead the all time series 4-0, with the most recent win coming in 2014.
The Texans beat the Jets last Saturday 29-22 in the first Saturday matchup of the NFL season. In week 13, they beat the Browns 29-13, and in week 14 they lost 24-21 to the Colts.
The Eagles shocked the world with a 30-23 win over the Rams in LA. In week 13, they beat the Redskins 28-13, and lost 29-23 to the Cowboys in week 14.
GTBets has the Eagles as 2.5 point favourites with an O/U of 46.
The Texans bounced back after their first loss since September with a win over the Jets. Deshaun Watson continues his impressive season, and on the year he has thrown for 3592 yards, 24 TDs, and 9 INTs while completing 67.7% of his passes and averaging 8.4 YPA. DeAndre Hopkins is far and away his go to receiver, leading the team with 94 catches, 1321 yards, and 11 TDs. Demaryius Thomas (20/238/2) and Jordan Thomas (19/209/4) also add different dynamics to the pass game. Lamar Miller leads the team in rushing with 917 yards and 4 TDs on 193 carries, while Alfred Blue has supplemented him with 473 yards and 2 TDs on 143 carries. Deshaun Watson is also a factor on the ground, rushing for 435 yards and 2 TDs on 79 carries.
The Texans scoring defense is ranked 5th, allowing just 19.2 PPG. Their pass defense is ranked below average, allowing 258.3 yards per game and 24 TDs through the air, while their pass rush ranks 10th with 39 sacks. Their run defense ranks in the top 5, allowing just 88.3 yards per game and 8 TDs on the ground. The Texans defense has forced 24 turnovers, and own a +10 turnover differential.
Injuries and Inactive Watch
CB Kareem Jackson (knee) – questionable, CB Jonathan Joseph (hip) – questionable, WR DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) – questionable
The Eagles recaptured some of their Super Bowl magic with the return of Nick Foles last week. Foles has played just 3 games, and has thrown for 721 yards, 1 TD, and 2 INTs while completing 69% of his passes and averaging 6.4 YPA in that time. Zach Ertz leads the team in receiving with 101 catches, 1038 yards, and 6 TDs. Alshon Jeffery (57/702/5) and Nelson Agholor (54/580/1) are featured heavily as well. On the ground, the Eagles are led by Josh Adams, who has rushed for 440 yards and 3 TDs on 98 carries. Darren Sproles and Wendell Smallwood factor in as well.
The Eagles scoring defense is ranked middle of the pack, allowing 22.7 PPG. Their pass defense is ranked 2nd to last, allowing 280.8 yards per game and 20 TDs through the air, while their pass rush ranks just above average with 36 sacks. Their run defense ranks above average, allowing 104.9 yards per game and 12 TDs on the ground. The Eagles D has forced just 15 turnovers, and they own a -4 turnover differential.
Injuries and Inactive Watch
DT Fletcher Cox (hip) – questionable, CB Sidney Jones (hamstring) – questionable, WR Alshon Jeffery (illness) – questionable
The Texans have to go to Philly to play a team coming off their biggest win of the season. Their offense faces an underrated defense, mostly patchworked in the secondary. If Deshaun Watson can get any time at all behind his abysmal offensive line, he should be able to dice up their secondary. The Eagles do not have anyone even close to matching up with DeAndre Hopkins, who could be in for another big game. On the ground, the Texans can do enough to keep the Eagles honest to prevent them from flying upfield after the passer.
The Eagles offense faces a tough task against a stellar Texans front. Their secondary is banged up as well, but the defense as a whole features a much more impressive pass rush that can get home with 4 while dropping 7 into coverage. At some point Nick Foles is going to break down, and this is a good spot for it to happen while he’s bludgeoned with pressure all game, and the Texans could pick up a cheap turnover or 2 off of him. This game should be closer to a pick’em, as any team with Nick Foles as the quarterback does not deserve to be a favorite, so the Texans feel like the right side here.
Predictions: Texans (+3.5