Disclaimer: There doesn't appear to be a whole lot of psychic power in this week's edition of "Three and Out."
That's not to say my well-documented abilities are fake, or waning, or absent. The gift that makes me the Miss Cleo of the NFL is still
very much a figment of my imagination alarmingly real. No, the reason this edition may not appear to be chock full of the usual psychic insight is because, in our current Andre Johnsonless world, even you normals have nearly reached a point where you know what's coming on Sunday.
On offense, you know the Texans are going to run the heck out of the ball with Arian Foster and Ben Tate. On defense, you know Wade Phillips will unleash pressure the likes of which we'd never seen before Bob McNair hired him, and you know the defense is going to create turnovers, because they've done it every game this year. In this strange new world we live in, there's a certain positive consistency that's never been present before. In other words, you don't NEED to be clairvoyant to know what's going to happen on Sunday in Tampa.
But nailing exact statistics and the final score on the nose? You can't do that. Only I can do that
with a frequency that makes Halley's Comet look like a daily occurence all the time. Prepare to be amazed anew after the jump.
1. Arian Foster and Ben Tate will combine for 32 carries (20 for Foster/12 for Tate), 173 rushing yards (103 for Foster/70 for Tate), and 2 TDs (1 for each of the Texans' RBs). Arian will add another 23 receiving yards to his total to boot.
2. Matt Schaub will have another relatively quiet day with a mere 196 passing yards, continuing Kubes' diabolical plan of setting the rest of the league up for a passing explosion (my guess is it'll be against the Falcons on December 4th) once Andre Johnson returns. The Schaub won't turn the ball over on Sunday, and he will throw one TD to...Kevin Walter.
3. Brooks Reed notches his fifth sack in four games. Brian Cushing and Antonio Smith also take Josh Freeman down. Freeman does manage to throw 2 TDs on the afternoon and has the Bucs marching toward a lead-changing score early in the fourth quarter, only to see the drive end with a pick to Johnathan Joseph.
PUT YOUR NAME ON IT: The Bucs are a study in contrast. They lose by 45 to the Niners in San Francisco and then turn around and beat the Saints in Tampa the next week. They're coming off a loss to the Saints in New Orleans, and they badly need this game to stay in the playoff conversation in the NFC. As I alluded above, I don't believe they're going to roll over like certain other Bud Adams-owned teams have. I think it'll be close into the early part of the fourth quarter, and then the Texans will put some distance between themselves and the Bucs on the scoreboard. Texans 27, Buccaneers 20.