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2019 Opponent Scouting Report: Week 12 Texans Special Teams, Final Thoughts and Predictions

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Houston Texans v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Overview

On November 21, 2019, the Indianapolis Colts will travel to take on the Houston Texans. In this Week 12 match-up, I sought to understand our opponent and get a better idea of how they may attack our Colts.

In week 7 these two teams met for a fantastic game in Lucas Oil Stadium. The Colts had control of the game early on and never let up. Jacoby Brissett had a big day setting career highs for both passing yards and touchdowns while Justin Houston sacked the Texans electric franchise quarterback twice. Hopefully, we see a repeat of that performance in prime time.

Let’s figure out what we can expect in week 12.


Special Teams


Kicker:

NFL: Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans John Glaser-USA TODAY Sports

Ka’imi Fairbairn has had a rough season. So far he’s missed 5 field goals and is 24 for 29 on extra points. In week 7 Fairbairn was perfect making three field goals and two extra points. Fairbairn’s misses haven’t come only at home or only on the road, he has been inconsistent nearly all season long. If this game comes down to a field goal for either team, well, things could be exciting or horribly disappointing.


Punter:

NFL: Preseason-Houston Texans at Dallas Cowboys Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Bryan Anger was signed before the Texans week three game this season. Since his signing, he has posted a net average of 43.7 yards per punt which is good for 6th in the league. Anger has been very good downing nearly 46% of his punts inside the 20 yard line. If this game comes down to a battle of field position the Texans are in a great position, unfortunately.

Hopefully Bill O’Brien decides to do this again:


Returner:

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Houston Texans Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

DeAndre Carter has bounced around the league, playing on three teams in three years and is currently on his second chance as a Texan. For now, though, Carter has carved out a role returning kicks and punts. On the season he’s averaging 8.9 yards per punt return but just 20.7 yards per kick return. He has never returned one for a touchdown and his longest return came by way of a 42 yarder in 2018 as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Sometimes guys like Carter will surprise you but based on what he’s done so far in his career, I wouldn’t lose sleep this week worrying about how to keep Carter contained.


Final Thoughts for The Week:

Playing the Texans in Houston on a short week will be more difficult than playing them at home following a bye. With that said the Colts are the more talented team from top to bottom, with the exception of the quarterback and wide receiver rooms, I truly believe the players who will take the field for the Colts are more talented than the players who will line up across from them.

Both defenses are well coached and both front sevens in this game are stout against the run. Where the defenses set themselves apart is in the passing game. Obviously this stat doesn’t tell anywhere close to the entire story but it’s interesting that the Texans have given up the third most passing yards and the fifth most passing touchdowns on the year. The Colts on the other hand have given up the eleventh fewest passing yards and thirteenth fewest passing touchdowns on the year.

The advantage on offense easily goes to the Texans, but again, those numbers don’t tell us everything. The Colts defense was able to bottle up the Texans and Darius Leonard and Kenny Moore have made big plays for a defense playing at a very high level since their week five win against the Kansas City Chiefs.

I don’t expect the Texans to win, but this is Thursday Night Football, weird things happen when teams don’t have time to rest and prepare and TNF is a weekly case study of what the human body is capable of in regard to playing pro football and rest and recovery time. So really anything could happen. If I look at everything logically, this is the Colts game to lose. If I look at given the unpredictability of these games in the past, well it really sucks that the league gave us a week 12 division game as our Thursday night game this season.


Predictions

  • Jacoby Brissett sets a new career high for yards in a game.
  • T.Y. Hilton’s legend will grow in Houston scoring two touchdowns in his first game back
  • Darius Leonard finishes with 10+ tackles.
  • Final Score:

Colts 31

Texans 28