Texans Have Pieces to Be a Serious Threat in 2017

Since Bill O’Brien was brought on as head coach of the Houston Texans in 2014, the franchise has been nothing if not consistent. On the heels of three straight seasons of 9-7 records, the Texans are once again looking to pull themselves out of the good-but-not-great territory they’ve seemingly been stuck in since their inception in 2002.

The biggest reason for the Texans’ inability to ascend to the upper echelon of the league is their never-ending carousel at the quarterback position. Under O’Brien, Houston has started eight different quarterbacks in the last three years. That storyline isn’t new, however, as the laundry list of QB names in franchise history is enough to make the Cleveland Browns blush.

Don’t believe me? Take a look for yourself at the Texans’ starting signal-callers through the years.

Not great, Bob. But for the first time in a while, a wave of optimism has swept over the team thanks to Houston’s selection of Deshaun Watson after trading up from pick No. 25 to 12 in the 2017 NFL draft. The former Clemson star is undoubtedly being groomed to take over the reins of the quarterback position for the future but will likely have to battle Tom Savage in the interim.

Here’s my betting breakdown for the Texans:

Super Bowl +2500

Houston hasn’t come close to sniffing a Super Bowl but is certainly moving in the right direction right now. The Texas have the ninth-best odds to go all the way in 2017 at Sportsbook, ahead of respectable teams like Denver, Kansas City and Arizona. Oddsmakers are clearly expecting them to be in the thick of things come playoff time, but with squads like New England, Oakland, Pittsburgh and Denver lurking in the AFC, it most likely isn’t their time to play on the biggest stage yet.

OVER/UNDER win total – 8.5

Considering they’re coming off three straight nine-win seasons, this number looks to be pretty on the nose. When it comes to betting the OVER/UNDER here, you have to ask yourself this: are the Texans really going to be worse this year than they have been in recent memory? I don’t think you could honestly say that. Houston has the stingiest defense in the league and finished the campaign as the top-ranked unit despite missing its best player for the majority of the season in J.J. Watt. Take the OVER.

Odds to make the playoffs +145

This line seems a little bit wonky to me, considering the No option is being offered at -175. The AFC South looks to be wide open this season and it wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see the Texans reach the promised land once again. The Colts aren’t exactly the most reliable team in the NFL, the Titans are on the rise but haven’t proven themselves as a contender yet and the Jaguars are, well, you know how bad they are. Whether it’s as the AFC South champion or a wild-card spot, take the +145 value and run on this one.

Odds to win the defensive player of the year award – J.J. Watt +350

Speaking of Justin James Watt, the defensive star will be more than ready to establish himself as the best defensive player in the NFL after suffering a season-ending injury a year ago. Rust won’t be an issue for the 28-year-old, as he spent the summer working out in his cabin in rural Wisconsin while likely helping little old ladies across the street every day. All jokes aside, Watt is an absolute beast who’s no stranger to the award after winning it in 2012, 2014 and 2015. Backing the favorite isn’t always the best strategy, but it’s pretty safe when you’re putting money on a player of Watt’s caliber.

2017 Houston Texans Futures Odds
Market Odds
Super Bowl +2500
AFC Championship +1200
AFC South +200
Win Total 8.5

Odds as of August 22 at Sportsbook