From last week's "Three and Out":
If Foster plays, I think the Texans win this game by six to ten points. Call it Texans 23, Bills 17 in that scenario.
As the final score of Texans-Bills can attest, nothing will ever be the same.
Now that my psychic ability is fully armed and operational, we move with haste to this week's set of predictions for The Governor's Cup.
1. As a Texans fan, my single greatest concern in this game is Houston stopping DeMarco Murray. He and the Cowboys' offensive line have been outstanding this season, and that strength just so happens to coincide with Houston's greatest defensive weakness. Ryan Pickett looked to be a decent addition to the run defense in limited action last week, the Texans' tackling overall has been worlds better this season than in the last several years, Brian Cushing is rounding into form, and J.J. Watt is playing at a level at which men only dare to dream, but I still think the Cowboys get the better of the matchup on the ground. By a lot. Put Murray down for 127 yards rushing and one touchdown.
2. The Cowboys' defense, on the other hand, has been much better than the catastrophically bad unit most pundits expected to see this season. That's not to say Dallas' defense is good; it's not. They can be had, and I do expect the Texans to put together some good drives on the backs of DeAndre Hopkins (he'll find the end zone again on Sunday), Andre Johnson (he's not dead yet; pencil him in for another 83 yards receiving), and Arian Foster (last week was an anomaly against a good Buffalo defense; Arian gets back on track this week with 89 rushing yards and a TD).
3. Tony Romo will throw an interception to Johnathan Joseph. Unfortunately, he will also throw two TDs (Dez Bryant and Jason Witten). I foresee Romo taking a handful of shots down the field throughout the game as the Texans stack the box to stop Murray. In some ways, the Romo-Murray combination will remind you of what the Giants' Eli Manning and Rashad Jennings did to the Texans in Week Three. Except this will be worse, because there will be images of Jerry Jones on your television interspersed throughout the broadcast.
PUT YOUR NAME ON IT: I hate myself for this. Truly, I do. I believe this is going to be a bad day at the office for your Houston Texans. Thanks to the excellence of the Cowboys' offensive line, DeMarco Murray will gash the Texans all afternoon. Unless Jason Garrett outsmarts himself (a legitimate possibility, by the way, and one that gives me hope), the Cowboys' offense will carry the water for a below average defense, and that'll be enough for
Southern Oklahoma Arlington Dallas to carry the day. Texans 17, Cowboys 27.
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