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NFL Free Pick: Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans

Prediction Machine NFL Free Pick: Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans (HOU -6, O/U 54)

Deshaun Watson and the Bill O’Brien-less Texans will host the Jacksonville Jaguars in an AFC South matchup Sunday. Gardner Minshew leads the Jags into Houston hoping to end their three-game skid, while the winless Texans hope a change of leadership will vault them to a victory in Week 5.

The sportsbooks are confident Houston will do so, listing the Texans as current 6-point favorites. When looking at this game for betting purposes, however, our model found a more distinctive edge on the total of 54 points.

We’re expecting a high-scoring matchup from these division foes, with our NFL model projecting a final score of 30.4-27.2 in favor of Houston. That gives us a solid edge on the OVER in this matchup, and our model suggests a $92 wager on OVER 54 for an average $100 bettor.

Prediction Machine’s NFL model was 129-75 ATS (63.2%) for +26.85 units and 117-98 (54.4%) on O/Us for +21.04 units in the 2019-20 season, producing a total profit of $4,789. Head over to predictionmachine.com/pricing and sign up to receive every NFL prediction.

Why will the total go OVER in Jaguars at Texans?

  • Both Houston and Jacksonville have struggled to limit opposing passing games through four weeks. Jacksonville has allowed a 30th-ranked 8.3 yards per pass attempt while Houston sits 21st on the list with 7.4 yards per pass attempt allowed. This is not a good sign for UNDER bettors come Sunday, as the Jags and Texans both rate in the top five in the NFL in pass rate, with over 64 percent of their play calls ending in a pass.
  • Not only do these teams pass frequently, but they do so effectively. Watson and the Texans have produced 7.9 yards per pass attempt (ninth-best) while facing Kansas City, Pittsburgh and Baltimore, who all rank in the top 11 in yards per pass attempt defensively. Jacksonville has been less impressive but still effective, sitting around the league average at 7.1 yards per pass attempt on the season.
  • Both offenses enter this matchup healthy, with fully intact offensive lines and a full complement of skill position players. This should help each offense succeed and sustain drives to put points on the board.

How to bet the spread in Jaguars at Texans:

Prediction Machine’s NFL model projects a final score of 30.4-27.2 in favor of the Texans. With a projected margin of victory of 3.2 points and the Texans currently listed as 6-point favorites, we have a solid edge on the Jaguars against the spread in this one. Our model suggests a $51 wager on JACKSONVILLE +6 for $100 average bettors.

Need-to-know stats for Jaguars at Texans:

  • 24/35 for 303.47 yds, 1.84 TDs, 0.83 INTs - We’re projecting Deshaun Watson to reach the 300-yard mark in Sunday’s matchup for the second consecutive week. Jacksonville’s defense has allowed opposing quarterbacks to be extremely efficient this season, and we’re expecting a similar outcome for Watson. Our model is projecting Watson will finish with 8.7 yards per pass attempt, an extremely high mark considering Russell Wilson leads the NFL with 8.8 yards per attempt on the season.
  • 120.0 to 120.7 yards - Both teams project to finish with right around 120 rushing yards. David Johnson should lead Houston ball carriers with a projected 77.1 yards, while James Robinson projects as the clear alpha in Jacksonville with 86.1 projected yards on the ground. Both quarterbacks should contribute to the rushing total as well, with Watson projected for 21.2 yards and Minshew close behind at 15.3 yards.