The Texans finished the 2008 season at 8-8 both straight up and against the spread but Houston is considered a serious contender to make the playoffs in 2009.
NFL odds at the online sportsbook have the Texans as a contender in the AFC South this season. Houston added defensive end Antonio Smith, defensive tackle Shaun Cody, offensive guard Adrian Jones, linebacker Cato June, wide receiver Torry Holt and backup quarterback Dan Orlovsky in the off-season. None of their losses look that significant. The Texans also added linebacker Brian Cushing in the first round of the NFL Draft.
NFL odds numbers tell us that Houston won eight of their last 12 games overall. Quarterback Matt Schaub, running back Steve Slaton and wide receiver Andre Johnson lead an offense that was 3rd in the league in totals yards and 17th in points scored as NFL odds stats show. Part of the problem for Houston was turning the ball over in the red zone and settling for field goals. Houston also has Kevin Walter and Owen Daniels who can score touchdowns and impact NFL odds at the online sportsbook.
Houston’s defense was disappointing as they finished 27th in points allowed as NFL odds stats show. Defensive end Mario Williams continues to prove his worth and along with DeMeco Ryans, gives the Texans a solid front but Houston needs Cushing to produce immediately and for players in the secondary to improve.
This is a pivotal season for head coach Gary Kubiak and the Texans. Houston has never made the playoffs since moving to Texas and this is the season that they are expected to contend. Expectations are a funny thing in the NFL. Sometimes teams will play up to what everyone believes but oftentimes the pressure is too much for them. Houston played very well down the stretch in 2008 to give fans and online betting gamblers a lot of hope. Keeping that going in 2009 might be a lot more difficult than most people think. Houston only made minor modifications to their team and that is a problem considering Houston was not that great defensively and they were not a good red zone offense. Neither of those needs was addressed in the off-season so Houston might be overvalued in 2009 NFL odds.