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Cincinnati Bengals vs. Houston Texans Predictions, Odds, Picks and NFL Week 16 Betting Preview – December 24, 2016

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Houston Texans Predictions, Odds, Picks and NFL Week 16 Betting Preview – December 24, 2016

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Houston Texans Betting Preview

Where: NRG Stadium, Houston, TX

When: Saturday, November 24, 2016, 8:25 PM ET

Line: Cincinnati Bengals (+1.5) at Houston Texans (-1.5); total: 41.5 – view all NFL lines

TV Broadcast: NFL Network

NFL News and Previews

Betting on the Cincinnati Bengals (+1.5)

The 24-20 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday might’ve signaled the end of head coach Marvin Lewis’ stint as the head coach of the Cincinnati Bengals. Not only did the Bengals lose their fourth-straight game to the Steelers, they were also ensured that they won’t make the playoffs for a sixth-consecutive year.

Cincinnati actually scored on their first four possessions and led by as many as 14 points in the first half before it started to unravel in the final two quarters. Most of the blame can be put on Andy Dalton, who went a mere 16-for-27 for 157 passing yards and threw a backbreaking pick late in the fourth quarter.

But Dalton wasn’t the only huge disappointment on Sunday, as the entire offense was in flux. The Bengals committed eight penalties for 86 yards, with four of those blunders coming in succession during the final period and which ultimately led to Pittsburgh’s go-ahead touchdown. And after Jeremy Hill found the end zone in the second quarter and celebrated by trying to rip a Terrible Towel, he netted a one-yard loss on six carries since. Hill would go on to finish with just 43 rushing yards on 23 carries to go with his TD.

With nothing left to play for and also coming off a deflating defeat to their most-hated rival, Cincy will likely enter Week 16’s game against the Texans with very little morale. The Bengals won’t relish the trip to Houston at all either, as they are just 2-5 on the road this season (1-5-1 ATS) with their only wins away from Ohio having been against the lowly Browns and Jets.

Betting on the Houston Texans (-1.5)

All this time, it appears as if the Houston Texans just needed a quarterback change to get back into playoff-contender form. They clawed back from a huge deficit against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday and won a tense 21-20 contest to remain tied with the Tennessee Titans for the top spot in the AFC South standings.

After a couple of ugly picks in back-to-back drives during the second quarter, the Texans finally benched struggling starting quarterback Brock Osweiler in favor of his backup, Tom Savage. NFL fans didn’t know what to expect from the third-year QB, and apparently neither did the Jaguars. Savage completed 23 of his 36 passes for 260 yards without an interception as he staged Houston’s comeback with poise after being down 13-0 in the first half.

While Savage’s efficiency was a welcome sight, he sure could use more help from the running game in Week 16, especially since we have yet to determine whether his outing on Sunday was for real or just a flash in the pan. Running back Lamar Miller found the end zone with less than three minutes left in the contest to put the Texans up for good, but he only gained 63 rushing yards on 22 carries.

Then again, Houston’s defense was just as instrumental in the win, as the team limited the Jags to just 150 yards and nine first downs. That D can certainly contain an unmotivated Cincinnati offense this Saturday, and having Week 16’s contest back in NRG Stadium is another plus. The Texans are 6-1 at home this season (4-2-1 ATS), and the home crowd will definitely give them a huge emotional boost especially after how Savage’s breakout performance turned their fans’ recent frustrations into newfound optimism.

Writer’s Prediction

The Texans (-1.5) continue to roll, 27-20.

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Written by Mark

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