Titans vs. Texans NFL Week 18 Picks and Odds Breakdown

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Davis Mills #10 of the Houston Texans. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images/AFP

The Houston Texans are double-digit dogs for Sunday’s season finale with the Tennessee Titans. They belong in your NFL picks – really.

Tennessee Titans vs. Houston Texans

Sunday, January 09, 2022 – 01:00 PM EST at NRG Stadium

Welcome to Week 18 of the NFL regular season. Sounds weird, doesn’t it? But here we are, with the Tennessee Titans getting ready to play Game No. 17 against the Houston Texans. Everyone’s a little more tired than last year, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the league; this should be a good spot for a contrarian bet on the Texans, who are 10-point home dogs on the NFL odds board at Heritage Sports as we go to press.

Or is it? Only 52 percent of early bettors agree, according to the consensus reports, and that’s despite FiveThirtyEight projecting Tennessee (11-5 SU, 10-6 ATS) to win this game by seven points. Jeff Sagarin at The USA Today has the Titans up 8.96 points, which isn’t nearly as juicy for us, but still. Maybe people just don’t want to bet on the Texans (4-12 SU, 7-9 ATS) at any price. They do kind of suck – even if they’ve won two of their last three SU and ATS.

Coming Home

Unfortunately for us, Houston didn’t win their last game against the San Francisco 49ers. Trey Lance was starting at quarterback for the injured Jimmy Garoppolo, and go figure, the Texans made him look like Steve Young out there, losing 23-7 as 14-point road dogs on the closing NFL lines. It was a matador cover by the Niners, though, thanks to a pair of Robbie Gould figgies in the final four minutes.

This was a desperate San Francisco team trying to make the playoffs, though. The Titans are already in; they can clinch the No. 1 seed in the AFC with a victory, so this isn’t an entirely meaningless game for them – but Tennessee won’t have their backs to the wall like the Niners did. Houston also get to play this one at home, where they beat the Los Angeles Chargers 41-29 two weeks ago as 13.5-point puppies. It’s their season finale. They have their pride.

Average at Best

We’d also be remiss if we didn’t point out just how average the Titans are. Football Outsiders have them ranked No. 19 overall in DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average), playing well enough to earn just 7.6 Estimated Wins. The No. 28 Texans, meanwhile, have earned 4.3 EW thus far. The gap between these two teams isn’t nearly as considerable as it looks in the actual standings.

One more demerit point for Tennessee: TE MyCole Pruitt nearly had his right foot torn off in last week’s 34-3 win over the Miami Dolphins (+3 at home). Pruitt was the junior member of their tight end triumvirate alongside Geoff Swaim and Anthony Firkser, but a useful member nonetheless. This was already expected to be a low-scoring game, with a total of 43 points on the board at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review); now the Titans will find it even more difficult to cover that double-digit spread. Bet accordingly, and we’ll see you for the playoffs.

NFL Pick: Texans +10 (–108) at Heritage Sports (visit our Heritage Sports Review)

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Texans +10 (-108)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.