NFL

Indianapolis Colts vs. Houston Texans NFL Wild Card Pick

Saturday, January 5 at 4:35 PM ET

NRG Stadium

65°F

Plenty of sunshine

Winds from the SSW 5 mph

Gusts: 7 mph

Coverage: ESPN/ABC

Two AFC South teams that know each other very well clash on Saturday when the Indianapolis Colts open the NFL Wild Card weekend against the Houston Texans.

 

Luck is the key
The Colts have momentum on their side ahead of this contest, they've won nine of their last 10 games and they outscored opponents by 10.75 points during their four-game winning streak. The Texans on the other hand finished the season 11-5 despite an 0-3 start and they outscored opponents by 11.75 points in their last four home games.

Andrew Luck was dominant against the Texans this season, completing 67 of 103 passes (65.1 percent) for 863 yards, six touchdowns and one interception, with a quarterback rating of 106.6. Luck set a career-high with 464 passing yards in a 37-34 loss on September 30 and then passed for 399 yards, the fourth-most of his career in a 24-21 win on December 9.

 

Best matchup
The Indianapolis offensive line against the Houston defensive line is the key matchup of this game. Both units are the main strength for each team and with Ryan Kelly back for the Colts, they will have a healthy line for the first time since mid-November, the same stretch in which Luck was upright for 239 straight pass attempts.

The Texans, led by J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney sacked Luck four times and both made huge game-changing plays in Week 4 and in Week 14 they had two sacks and five hits on him, so this matchup could very well decide who moves on to the Divisional Playoff.

 

NFL Trends:

The Indianapolis Colts are:

3-10-1 ATS in their last 14 games after scoring more than 30 points in their previous game

1-4 ATS in their last five playoff road games

1-4-1 ATS in their last six games after accumulating more than 150 rushing yards in their previous game

1-4 ATS in their last five games following a straight up win of more than 14 points

The Houston Texans are:

6-1-1 ATS in their last eight games against AFC opponents

4-1 ATS in their last five home games

4-1 ATS in their last five games against AFC South opponents

4-1-1 ATS in their last six games on fieldturf

The two games between the Colts and the Texans this season were decided by three points each, with the home team winning both times. The Colts are on a roll right now but I can't help to feel that people are underestimating the Texans, a team that was more consistent this season.

NFL Pick: Texans -120 at Jazz Sports

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