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- Texans are 5-2 ATS in the last 7 against AFC
- Texans are 2-5-1 ATS last 8 after SU win
- The Browns are 5-12 ATS last 17 against AFC
- Browns are 1-4 ATS in last 5 home games
This is either a “comeback” or a “we could be legitimate” game for the Houston Texans when they visit the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. Some thought the Texans might be ripe to become the NFL’s very first 0-17 team with the new expanded schedule, but they’ve already opened 2020 with a win over Jacksonville last week. Cleveland is 0-1 for its home opener, but performed well in a 4-point loss to perennial Super Bowl contender Kansas City.
Houston Texans vs Cleveland Browns schedule
- Or: FirstEnergy Stadium, Cleveland, Ohio
- When: Sunday, September 19 at 1 p.m. ET
- How to watch: CBS
Texans vs Browns odds
Are the Texans going to blow themselves up?
Houston looked good in a 37-21 win over the Jaguars last week, but then again, maybe Jacksonville looked so bad in Trevor Lawrence and Urban Meyer’s NFL debut. Regardless, punters don’t give much credit to the Texans’ win in Week 1, making it +13 underdogs on Sunday in Cleveland.
Fans aren’t saying ‘Deshaun Who’ yet as the Texans don’t have their star QB to start the season, but Tyrod Taylor has performed pretty well in Watson’s absence. Taylor led the Texans to 27-7 in the first half last week, which is impressive considering he was only on his second start since 2019. Taylor finished with 291 yards and 2 TD in the airs and ran 40 more to the ground.
Lovie Smith’s new defensive scheme was perhaps the story of the game when Houston won in Week 1, holding the Jaguars to 7 points in the first half and just 76 yards rushing that day. . It looks like Jags rookie Lawrence had a good day in his first NFL action with 332 yards and 3 TDs, but he also had 3 INTs and most of his production came after the Texans have already secured a 34-7 lead in the 3rd trimester.
Browns straighten up
Having a win out of your hands against KC, in Game 1 of the season, and at Arrowhead can be pretty deflating. That being said, Cleveland needs to get back on its feet and should be able to do it, as a full capacity of fans is back at FirstEnergy Stadium, aka the Dawg Pound. Around 12,000 fans were able to watch Cleveland’s series final against Pittsburgh last season, but that number increases to around 50,000 for the 2021 home opener.
Fans should have a reason to be excited about this team despite the loss to Kansas City. The Browns scored on their first three possessions and collected 318 yards in the first half while taking a 22-10 lead. Baker Mayfield finished the game 21/28 for 321 while Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt and Jarvis Landry all had touchdowns.
Of course, when you’ve got that kind of offensive efficiency and you’re still losing, there will be questions that will arise around the Cleveland defense – but those are a washout when you play Kansas City. The Texans offense and the Chiefs offense are on different ends of the spectrum.
Prediction and selection
Who will win the NFL game tonight:
Is Houston better than expected or was their first week success just a by-product of playing the Jaguars? Until we really know it, 13 points is too much to give in Week 2, especially as Taylor tries to get revenge on his former team, the Browns.
Browns 28 – Texans 20
Choice of experts: