Two teams looking to spark their sputtering offenses clash Sunday as the Chicago Bears (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS) host the Houston Texans (0-1-1, 2-0) in NFL Week 3 action. The Bears are coming off yet another loss to Green Bay in prime time, dropping a 27-10 decision to the Packers on Sunday Night Football. The Texans attack failed to find the end zone last weekend, but the team still managed to keep things close in a 16-9 road loss to the Denver Broncos.
Texans vs Bears Opening Odds
The Bears have faded slightly to 2.5-point favorites since opening as 3-point chalk in their first date with Houston since December 2020. Conversely, the total has been on the rise since opening at 38.5, climbing to 40.5. The Bears claimed a decisive 36-7 win when the Texans last visited the Windy City two years ago, which also marked their first straight up and against the spread win in five all-time head-to-head meetings.
Low-scoring games have been commonplace when these teams meet. The total has topped 43 just once in their five clashes, fueling a 4-1 run for the UNDER. The UNDER has also prevailed in each of these teams’ first two games of the 2022 NFL season.
Texans Benefiting From Opponents’ Miscues
The Texans defied expectations by seizing an early 20-3 lead over Indianapolis before settling for a 20-20 tie with the Colts in Week 1. However, the Houston offense has been missing in action since, mustering just three field goals and no touchdowns over the past 82 minutes of play. That includes last week’s loss to the Broncos in which they compiled just 234 total yards and managed to penetrate the Denver red zone just once.
Overall, Houston ranks 31st in the NFL after allowing an average of 433.5 total yards per game over their first two outings. The Texans also sit near the bottom of the league stats in points scored, total yards and rushing yards.
The Houston offensive line also needs to be better after allowing quarterback Davis Mills to be sacked six times through their first two outings. Things will get no easier for Mills against a stout defense that has limited opposing pivots to just two total scoring passes while racking up five sacks.
Can Justin Fields Rebound From SNF Debacle?
Like Houston, the Bears have struggled to generate consistent offense during a 1-1 start. After leading the Bears to a 19-10 upset win over San Francisco in Week 1, quarterback Justin Fields fell flat in last weekend’s 27-10 loss in Green Bay on Sunday Night Football, connecting on just seven of 11 pass attempts for 70 yards and one interception.
The lone bright spot in Sunday’s disappointing loss was rusher David Montgomery, who accounted for more than half of the Bears’ total yardage by running for 122 yards.
Considering the struggles that Fields is enduring, and the Texans’ inability to contain the rush in their first two contests, expect getting the ball to Montgomery to be the focal point of the Bears’ game plan.
Texans: Keys To Win
The Texans have managed to seize the momentum by scoring early in each of their first two outings. While they were unable to maintain that edge against superior offensive opponents, that could all change against the slumping Bears. Davis Mills would also benefit from more protection from his offensive line, which has been hampered by the absence of center Justin Britt, who stepped away from the team in the wake of a shaky Week 1 performance.
Bears: Keys To Win
A return to Week 1 form by Justin Fields would give the Bears a big edge on Sunday. But with that being far from certain, the onus will fall on the Bears’ seventh-ranked pass defense to limit the time and space given to Mills, who has just two scoring passes vs three fumbles so far this season.
NFL Computer Pick: Bears -2.5
Doc's Picks Service
Need more winning picks? Get $60 worth of premium member picks from Doc’s Sports – a recognized leader and trusted name in sports handicapping since 1971.
Odds Shark Staff Thu, Sep 29, 12:44pm