Despite their ineptitude on offense, and their 30-7 blowout loss in Week 1, the Pittsburgh Steelers are in first place in the AFC North. The Steelers are 2-1 after their win on Sunday Night Football in Las Vegas and will be on the road in Houston in Week 4.
The Houston Texans got their first win of the year last week, 37-17 over the Jacksonville Jaguars, and it’s already clear that they have their quarterback. CJ Stroud has been excellent and could be an advantage for Houston in Week 4. I’ll get into my pick for this game and a full preview, but for a betting pick on every game of the week, check out BetSided NFL betting expert Iain MacMillan’s “Road to 272.”
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Now, let’s get into the odds for the Steelers and Texans in Houston.
Steelers vs. Texans odds, spread and total
Texans vs. Steelers Betting Trends
- Texans are 1-2 ATS
- The OVER is 2-1 in Texans games
- Steelers are 2-1 ATS
- The UNDER is 2-1 in Steelers games
Steelers vs. Texans injury reports
Steelers injury report
- Gunner Olszewski - WR - day-to-day (head)
- Anthony McFarland Jr. - RB - IR- (knee)
- Diontae Johnson - WR - IR (hamstring)
- Cam Heyward - DT - IR (groin)
Texans injury report
- Denzel Perryman - LB - day-to-day (hand)
- Tavierre Thomas - CB - day-to-day (hand)
- Laremy Tunsil - OT - day-to-day (knee)
- Jalen Pitre - S - day-to-day (lung)
- Derek Stingley Jr. - CB - Out indefinitely (hamstring)
- Hassan Ridgeway - DT - Out indefinitely (calf)
- Noah Brown - WR - Out indefinitely (groin)
- Tytus Howard - OT - Out indefinitely (hand)
Steelers vs. Texans how to watch
- Date: Sunday, October 1
- Time: 1:00 PM EST
- Venue: NRG Stadium
- How to Watch (TV): CBS
- Steelers Record: 2-1
- Texans Record: 1-2
Steelers vs. Texans key players to watch
Kenny Pickett, QB: After two weeks it looked like Pickett might not be an NFL quarterback, but he redeemed himself in Vegas. Pickett went 16-28 for 235 yards and two touchdowns against the Raiders, the first game of his career with multiple passing touchdowns.
CJ Stroud, QB: We’re only three weeks into the season and CJ Stroud is already making the Panthers look stupid for passing on him. Stroud is 78-121 for 906 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions. Last week, he got his first career win and threw for 280 yards against Jacksonville.
Steelers vs. Texans prediction and pick
So, the Steelers are 2-1, the Steelers are in first place in the AFC North, and the Steelers are favored this week. Yet, the Steelers are 27th in total offense, 22nd in yards per play averaging just 5.0, 30th in rushing offense, 29th in yards per rush, 17th in passing offense, and 22nd in yards per pass attempt.
The Steelers are also 28th in yards allowed, 27th in yard per play allowed, 30th in rushing defense, 29th in yards per rush allowed, 22nd in passing defense and 22nd in yards per pass attempt.
Statistically, Pittsburgh is a bad football team with an unimaginative offense play-caller and a big question mark surrounding their second year quarterback. Yet, like always, Mike Tomlin has found a way to win games.
On the other side, the Houston Texans are a young team with an exciting young franchise quarterback, and young coaches off the Kyle Shanahan coaching tree. You know, the coach of the team that absolutely shredded the Pittsburgh defense and stifled the Kenny Pickett offense in Week 1.
The Texans are averaging 5.2 yards per play and against Jacksonville they gained 6.5. They are seventh in pass attempts with a rookie quarterback and that rookie is averaging 7.5 yards per attempt which is eighth best in the NFL.
There isn’t a lot that the Steelers do well, but they can get after the quarterback and that’s why they will win and cover. Pittsburgh’s defense is second in pressure rate at 30.3% only behind Cleveland, and the Steelers 13 sacks lead the NFL. CJ Stroud’s completion percentage drops form 68.7% when kept clean to 55.3% when under pressure, and his yards per attempt falls from 8.9 to 4.3. He has four “turnover worthy plays” according to PFF when pressured and he has been sacked 11 times which is seventh most in football.
Stroud is a very good young quarterback, but he’s not ready for TJ Watt and Alex Highsmith. Stroud’s time to throw when pressured actually goes up to 3.24, so unlike Brock Purdy who just got the ball out immediately and shredded the Steelers, Stroud will hold it too long and get into trouble.
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Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change