Texans battling history as Patriots loom


13 January, 2017

As the New England Patriots get ready for their playoff game Saturday against the Houston Texans, much has been made of the sudden abundance of weapons that quarterback Tom Brady now has at his disposal.

This game will kick off 8:15 p.m. ET, airing on CBS. All eight teams will be in action this weekend, with two games on Saturday, January 14th, and two more on Sunday, January 15th. The only time they didn't allow 40 points was this past season when the Patriots won 27-0 in Week 3.

One of the more confusing prospects in this year's draft, no one is really sure if the versatile 6-foot-1, 205-pounder is a safety, a linebacker or a nickel corner. Justin Houston is going to be back in the lineup on the defensive side of the ball, and that's going to be a huge plus for them. Most interesting was that he didn't turn the ball over for just the third time this season in a game he started.

New England running back LeGarrette Blount also had a fine game, rushing for 105 yards on 24 carries and scoring two touchdowns, while Brissett added 48 yards on the ground. "We're going to have to see if we can meet that challenge". By doing that, the Pats would nearly guarantee he won't sustain enough long drives to keep pace with Tom Brady. "That's probably optimistic, but we will certainly be better off for him being out there than we would be if he were watching the game". They're pretty good against the pass - second in the National Football League - but the Patriots can also run the ball with LeGarrette Blount.

Nevertheless Houston can take comfort from the fact that they boast the league's number one defense, with defensive end Jadeveon Clowney outstanding in the absence of the injured J.J. Watt. I don't even think Houston fans are expecting them to go in there and get this W. But, I bet everyone in that locker room thinks that they have a shot.

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Osweiler knows the play on the field starts with the mental aspect and getting that handled is the biggest key on Saturday. If they can stop the run and do what they've done against the pass, then they have a chance to be successful.

If this is the end, what better way to go out by shocking the world by beating his old team on the way? While the Texans are a surprise this season, the success of the New England Patriots are not.

"I thought he did a great job in his demeanor and poise", Texans left tackle Duane Brown said. Even if the Houston defense plays lights out for all four quarters, their offense is too weak and they can not stop Brady. "Football's not played in Vegas or anything, so I really don't think any of that matters".

Depending on the source, the 14-2 Patriots are an NFL-best 14-2 or 13-3 versus the spread this season; mathematical evidence of Bill Belichick's team never ever going through the motions. Brady and the Patriots do not have to worry about him though, as he's out for the season after back surgery.

Patriots Pro Bowl safety Devin McCourty meanwhile insisted his team-mates would not distracted by the long odds against a Texans victory.

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