The Houston Texans Can Keep NFL Playoff Odds Alive with Week 15 Win Over Tennessee Titans

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: Apr 9, 2024 08:00 PM
The Houston Texans Can Keep NFL Playoff Odds Alive with Week 15 Win Over Tennessee Titans

The Houston Texans have been hovering around the conversation for most of the year. And entering their Week 15 matchup with the Tennessee Titans on December 17, at 1 p.m. eastern standard time, on the field at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, they have the opportunity to seriously improve their odds to make the NFL playoffs

Will they get the job done? The latest NFL online betting odds suggest they will—though, they’re hardly a given:

Houston Texans (-2.5)-110-110Tennesee Titans (+2.5)

Please remember to double-check these online NFL betting odds until you actually submit your wager. Our Texans vs. Titans Week 15 betting odds are accurate entering Wednesday, December 6. That gives the best NFL online betting sites plenty of time to make adjustments leading into opening kick-off on December 17. 

And since we’re delivering these NFL Week 15 picks so far in advance, we’ll be looking at the Texans vs. Titans point spread betting lines alone. The over/under and moneyline odds will drop later. For now, we’ll lay out the case for each team and deliver our final prediction.

So, will the Texans nab a Week 15 victory and significantly boost their NFL Wild Card odds? Or will this be one of those games in which the Titans defenses throw their opponent for an unexpected whirl? Let’s get to some Titans vs. Texans predictions.

The Case to Bet on the Houston Texans in Week 15

Hardly anyone saw the Texans coming this season. Teams that start rookie quarterbacks tend to get written off. That was supposed to be the case with C.J. Stroud. And for a couple of weeks, it looked like Houston would remain firmly in rebuilding mode. But then they rattled off a victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 3. And they followed that up with a win against the PIttsburgh Steelers in Week 4. Their stock has snowballed from there.

The Texans are now almost universally recognized as a legitimate threat to party crash the AFC Wild Card race. Stroud is overseeing an offense that doesn’t just rank 10th in points per game but balances control with big-play potential. No team has thrown fewer interceptions on the year, and Houston ranks third in net yards averaged per passing attempt. Their overall rushing game is a little spotty, if not bad. But Stroud himself has shown the capacity to make and extend plays with his legs. The rookie QB has three rushing touchdowns on the season.

Yet, while the offense receives most of the fanfare, the Texans have somewhat quietly cobbled together a genuinely stout defense. They rank 12th in points allowed per game, second in passing touchdowns allowed and third in net yards surrendered per rushing attempt. Offenses with superstar QBs have been able to move the chains against them in most weeks, often completing some big-yardage plays. And the Texans have struggled to get stops consistently on third down. 

Houston does, however, tighten things up in the red zone. They are 10th in the percentage of red zone trips from opposing offenses that end in scores. That’s a huge deal in a vacuum. It means even more against a Titans team that ranks 30th in red zone offense, not to mention 30th on third-down conversion to boot.

Houston Texans To cover the point spread against the Tennessee Titans in Week 15

The Case to Bet on the Tennessee Titans in Week 15

The Titans offense isn’t going to scare anyone, least of all a Texans squad that knows how to break up opponent passing games. Still, Tennessee’s defense might be a little underrated. They are just 16th in points allowed per game and second to last in opponent turnover percentage, but they know how to grind out possessions. In fact, Tennessee ranks second in the percentage of opponent drives that end in scores.

Talented passers can find holes in the Titans’ defense. C.J. Stroud will no doubt have his moments. But Tennessee has surrendered 25 or more points only three times all season—and just twice since Week 4

What’s more, despite a lackluster offense, the Titans have been able to break through with their rushing game from time to time. Having Derrick Henry and Tyjae Fields in the backfield gives you that firepower.

For all Houston does well on defense, they are 26th in rushing touchdowns allowed. Attempting to control the game on the ground could provide a window of opportunity for the Titans to leave with a victory.

Tennessee Titans To cover the point spread against the Houston Texans in Week 15

Official Texans vs. Titans Week 15 Prediction

Given everything we already said about the Texans, a 2.5-point spread seems like a joke. Surely they will cover this. They’re playing at home, and the Titans are miles below .500, with one of the worst offenses in the league.

This might wind up being true. But the Texans have not amassed a bunch of comfortable victories. On the contrary, their past five victories have come by a combined 22 points—an average margin of victory under five points. Houston has been involved in some real one-possession nail-biters, and Tennessee leans on rushing plays in a way that could mandate a slower, tightly contested pace in this game.

None of which is enough to get us to back off the Texans. If this spread were four or five points, then perhaps we’d demur. But even then, the Titans are quickly traveling in a direction that will inevitably cater to their 2024 NFL draft odds. By Week 15, they may not be putting their best foot forward in terms of available personnel. Either way, we’re rolling with the plucky Texans.

OSB Prediction: Houston Texans, -2.5 (-110)

Houston Texans To cover the point spread against the Tennessee Titans in Week 15

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Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan Favale leverages over 12 years of sports journalism expertise in his role as New York staff writer. He provides in-depth analysis across the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, tennis, NASCAR, college basketball, and sports betting. Dan co-hosts the popular Hardwood Knocks NBA podc...

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