Watson torched the Patriots defence last season (22-33 for 301 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions; eight carries for 41 yards). He’s got two great receivers in DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller and a revamped offensive line protecting him. It is not hard to see him doing it again.
But the bigger question for Houston will be whether their defence can slow down the Patriots juggernaut of an offence. Even at full-strength, they’ve struggled to contain the Patriots the last couple of years.
In last season’s game, the defence couldn’t hold the lead with only 2:24 on the clock. However, to be fair, Tom Brady is one of the best to every play, so it’s not like just any old quarterback dissected them.
So—who’s going to win?
This could very well be the most exciting game of the weekend. For the last few years, the Patriots have gotten off to slow starts in Week One. Kansas City thumped them last year; the Cardinals pushed them pretty hard the year before as did the Steelers the year before that.
Tom Brady will need to lean on Rob Gronkowski, and his running backs with Julian Edelman suspended and Danny Amendola in Miami. But the Patriots defence typically takes a few weeks to wake up, so the circumstances could be perfect for Watson to have a breakout game.
New England is favored to win by 6.5 points. If you’re a gutsy gambler, take the Texans and the points. I’d be hesitant to bet on the Texans to win (+248), though. Expect New England to win (-280). With the potential of both offences to put up points, go with the over (51).