NFL Week 11 Predictions: Houston Texans vs. Cleveland Browns

Houston Texans vs. Cleveland Browns
Sunday, 11/16/14, 1:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Cleveland -3
Current Betting Line:  Cleveland -3.5
Opening Total:  42
Current Total:  40.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Houston Texans defense will need to put together a strong performance Sunday
The Houston Texans defense will need to put together a strong performance Sunday

Houston returns to the field after a bye week, as it dropped a 31-21 decision to the Philadelphia Eagles as 1.5-point home underdogs on Nov. 2, while going OVER the betting total for a fourth consecutive affair.  The Texans are expected to send out backup signal-caller Ryan Mallet to make his first career start as a professional, which can’t be ignored when making your Week 11 NFL predictions, as first-year head coach Bill O’Brien attempts to create a spark offensively.  Houston is 1-3 SUATS as road underdogs of three or fewer points the last two-plus seasons, with no clear edge in regards to the betting total (2-2 Over/Under).

The Texans haven’t crossed the 300-yard passing mark all season, which is important to consider when looking over the NFL betting lines, as they’ve averaged 209.7 yards per game in that category.  Houston hasn’t gotten the ball to star wide receiver Andre Johnson all season, as he’s yet to put together a 100-yard receiving game, while the squad will also be without the services of star running back Arian Foster.  It’s a major blow because he was leading the AFC with 822 rushing yards.

Cleveland has won three games in a row, including a 24-3 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals as 6.5-point road underdogs on Nov. 6, while capturing the statistical battle for the first time in four affairs.  The Browns have been fortunate to put together this winning streak with running back Ben Tate averaging just 1.9 yards per carry in his last four games played, but signal-caller Brian Hoyer has played at a high level for most of the 2014 campaign.  He has thrown just four interceptions and his rate is just behind former teammate Tom Brady.  Cleveland is 1-3 SU and 0-3-1 ATS versus AFC South opponents since the start of the 2012 campaign.

The Browns are expected to have tight end Jordan Cameron and wide receiver Andrew Hawkins back on the field, as they attempt to snap a two-game losing streak in this series, but the two teams haven’t met since 2011.  Cleveland has thrown the ball down field this season with Hoyer under center, as his 74 passes that have traveled at least 15 yards down field is the sixth-highest total in the league.

Sports bettors will likely play the total, as the UNDER is 5-1 in the last six installments of this series.

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