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New England Patriots vs. Houston Texans Pick & Prediction NOV 22TH 2020

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New England Patriots vs. Houston Texans Recap NOV 22TH 2020

Deshaun Watson passed for three touchdowns and added a receiving touchdown as the host Houston Texans defeated the New England Patriots 28-22 on Sunday.

The Texans (8-4) maintained their one-game lead in the AFC South with their first victory over the Patriots (10-2) since Week 17 of the 2009 season. New England had been 10-1 all-time against Houston, including postseason play, with five wins over the past four seasons.

Watson, who finished 18 of 25 for 234 yards, became the first quarterback to throw two scoring passes against the Patriots this season.

His 14-yard touchdown pass to Duke Johnson with 38 seconds left in the first quarter gave the Texans the lead for good and capped a brief 3-play, 21-yard possession that followed a Bradley Roby interception of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

Watson added a 13-yard scoring toss to tight end Darren Fells at the 6:21 mark of the second quarter that extended the lead to 14-3.

His 35-yard strike to Kenny Stills with 5:41 left in the third pushed that advantage to 18 points and proved to be the decisive play because it just beat the play clock and came just after a dropped touchdown pass by Will Fuller on the preceding snap.

The Texans' relative success against the Patriots' top-ranked defense proved surprising. That Brady and the New England offense continued to scuffle was no shock.

While Houston surged to a 14-3 halftime lead, Brady completed just 7 of 19 attempts for 82 yards plus the interception in the first half. New England opened the third quarter with two fruitless possessions, with Roby registering a third-down sack of Brady to snuff the initial drive. Brady threw incomplete on fourth down at the Houston 42-yard line to complete the second possession of the second half.

Even the Patriots' first touchdown drive proved laborious, requiring 12 plays and 5:30 off the third-quarter clock.

James White caught the first of his two touchdown passes, this one covering 12 yards, to pull the Patriots to within 21-9, but the Texans answered with haste, covering 75 yards over nine plays, capped when Watson caught a 6-yard pitch from DeAndre Hopkins following a double handoff with 9:53 left.

Brady passed for two touchdowns inside the final four minutes, giving the Texans a scare before the subsequent onside kickoff attempt went out of bounds with 50 seconds remaining.

Brady completed 42 of 47 passes for 326 yards. White paired 79 rushing yards with his 98 receiving yards and two scores.

--Field Level Media

New England quarterback Cam Newton will typically draw the spotlight, whether for praise or criticism, and the Patriots' recent rebound on offense naturally brings the focus on Newton.

 

On the heels of a four-game losing skid that raised alarms throughout the league, Newton has found a bit of a groove and relatedly, the Patriots appear to be trending in the right direction as they enter Sunday's game against the host Houston Texans.

 

Newton is 40-of-52 passing for 392 yards and four combined touchdowns in victories over the New York Jets and Baltimore Ravens, producing a 106.7 passer rating central to the Patriots' improved play.

 

A commitment to running the ball -- the Patriots are averaging 173.3 rushing yards over their last three games -- seems to have bolstered the revival, with New England (4-5) cleaved to the ground game Sunday against the Texans (2-7).

 

"We've certainly tried to adapt our style and what we do from week to week to fit our players the best that we can against the opponent that we're playing, and all credit goes to the players," Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said. "They've done some good things.

 

"We have a long way to go. We've got a lot of improvements we can still make but they've really tried to embrace what we've tried to do the last so many weeks. They've really worked hard in practice to improve and collectively we're making some strides."

 

The Texans continue to search for answers offensively, particularly in the running game. With starting running back David Johnson set to miss a second consecutive game with a concussion, Houston has leaned more on quarterback Deshaun Watson to augment the ground attack.

 

Watson has amassed 124 rushing yards over the last three games after totaling 109 over the initial six. Watson isn't explicitly running more by design, but the production is surely welcomed.

 

"A lot of those is just kind of reaction and just kind of making plays happen," Watson said. "It helps the offense to be able to expand what we do, especially open up the run game a little bit. Most of those plays has just been naturally, just kind of pocket collapsing and me just making a play."

 

Texans left tackle Laremy Tunsil (illness) headlined a host of Texans who missed practice on Wednesday. Running back Duke Johnson (illness), wideout Kenny Stills (back), safety Michael Thomas (shoulder) and punter Bryan Anger (quad) also missed.

 

For the Patriots, veteran receiver Julian Edelman (knee surgery) and rookie offensive lineman Justin Herron (ankle) are both on the brink of returning to action after having missed the past three games each.

 

Edelman (21 catches, 315 yards) and Herron, who started against the Kansas City Chiefs and Denver Broncos, haven't been cleared, but their progress will be closely monitored.

 

"Neither player has had a setback," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said Wednesday. "They've both progressed in a positive direction. It's just really a question of whether they're ready or not, and is that today, is it (Thursday), is it next week.

 

"I'm not sure what the time frame is on that, but I think they're all moving in the right direction and the decisions really on this, before we start the clock, we just want to make sure that they're confident and we're confident that they're ready for participation in the next stage of their return to play."

 

--Field Level Media

 

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GAMES

Last 10

W 38% L 63%
3 5
  • @Houston L 20 - 27
  • Baltimore W 17 - 23
  • @N.Y. Jets W 30 - 27
  • @Buffalo L 21 - 24
  • San Francisco L 33 - 6
  • Denver L 18 - 12
  • Denver D 0 - 0
  • @Kansas City L 10 - 26
  • @Kansas City D 0 - 0
  • Las Vegas W 20 - 36
W 40% L 60%
4 6
  • @Detroit W 41 - 25
  • New England W 20 - 27
  • @Cleveland L 7 - 10
  • @Jacksonville W 27 - 25
  • Green Bay L 35 - 20
  • @Tennessee L 36 - 42
  • Jacksonville W 14 - 30
  • Minnesota L 31 - 23
  • @Pittsburgh L 21 - 28
  • Baltimore L 33 - 16

Next Games

  • Arizona(09-16-12) L 20 - 18
  • @L.A. Chargers(12-07-14) W 23 - 14
  • @L.A. Rams(02-03-19) W 13 - 3
  • @Miami(09-15-19) W 43 - 0
  • Buffalo(12-21-19) W 17 - 24
  • @Detroit(11-26-20) W 41 - 25
  • Indianapolis(11-21-19) W 17 - 20
  • @Chicago(11-11-12) W 13 - 6
  • @Indianapolis(10-20-19) L 23 - 30
  • Cincinnati(12-24-16) W 10 - 12

Last Meetings

  • Patriots @ Texans 20-27
  • Patriots @ Texans 22-28
  • Texans @ Patriots 20-27
  • Texans @ Patriots 33-36
  • Patriots @ Texans 23-27
  • Texans @ Patriots 16-34
  • Texans @ Patriots 0-27
  • Patriots @ Texans 27-6
  • Patriots @ Texans 34-31
  • Texans @ Patriots 28-41

American Football Conference

AFC EastWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Buffalo Bills73 0.7000.00.00.0 4-13-27-0-3
Miami Dolphins64 0.6001.00.00.0 3-23-26-0-4
New England Patriots46 0.4003.00.00.0 3-21-44-0-6
New York Jets010 0.0007.00.00.0 0-50-50-0-10
AFC NorthWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Pittsburgh Steelers100 01.0000.00.00.0 5-05-010-0-0
Cleveland Browns73 0.7003.00.00.0 5-12-27-0-3
Baltimore Ravens64 0.6004.00.00.0 2-34-16-0-4
Cincinnati Bengals27 1.2227.50.00.0 2-20-52-1-7
AFC SouthWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Tennessee Titans73 0.7000.00.00.0 4-23-17-0-3
Indianapolis Colts73 0.7000.00.00.0 4-13-27-0-3
Houston Texans47 0.3643.50.00.0 2-32-44-0-6
Jacksonville Jaguars19 0.1006.00.00.0 1-40-51-0-9
AFC WestWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Kansas City Chiefs91 0.9000.00.00.0 4-15-09-0-1
Las Vegas Raiders64 0.6003.00.00.0 2-34-16-0-4
Denver Broncos46 0.4005.00.00.0 2-32-34-0-6
Los Angeles Chargers37 0.3006.00.00.0 2-31-43-0-7

National Football Conference

NFC EastWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Washington Football Team47 0.3640.00.00.0 3-31-43-0-7
Philadelphia Eagles36 1.3330.00.00.0 2-21-43-1-6
New York Giants37 0.3000.50.00.0 2-31-43-0-7
Dallas Cowboys38 0.2731.00.00.0 2-41-43-0-7
NFC NorthWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Green Bay Packers73 0.7000.00.00.0 3-14-27-0-3
Chicago Bears55 0.5002.00.00.0 2-33-25-0-5
Minnesota Vikings46 0.4003.00.00.0 1-43-24-0-6
Detroit Lions47 0.3643.50.00.0 1-43-34-0-6
NFC SouthWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
New Orleans Saints82 0.8000.00.00.0 5-13-18-0-2
Tampa Bay Buccaneers74 0.6361.50.00.0 3-24-27-0-3
Carolina Panthers47 0.3644.50.00.0 2-42-34-0-6
Atlanta Falcons37 0.3005.00.00.0 1-42-33-0-7
NFC WestWL DPRCGBHOMEAWAYPAST L10
Los Angeles Rams73 0.7000.00.00.0 4-03-37-0-3
Seattle Seahawks73 0.7000.00.00.0 5-02-37-0-3
Arizona Cardinals64 0.6001.00.00.0 3-23-26-0-4
San Francisco 49ers46 0.4003.00.00.0 1-43-24-0-6

Last Injuries

Houston Texans

  • Charlie Heck

    Undisclosed
    day-to-day | questionable

    Heck sat out the previous contest due to an unspecified ailment. It is unknown if he will face the Colts in Week 13.

  • Nate Orchard

    Undisclosed
    day-to-day | questionable

    Orchard was held out of the lineup for the last game with an undefined injury, and it is uncertain if he will be active Week 13 against the Colts.

  • Josh McCown

    Personal
    day-to-day | questionable

    McCown has been absent from the lineup during the previous three games due to a personal matter, and it is undetermined if he will make his team debut against the Colts during Week 13.

  • Kenny Stills

    Quadricep
    day-to-day | questionable

    Stills missed the last game due to a quad injury, and it remains to be seen if he will dress for Week 13 versus the Colts.

  • Cullen Gillaspia

    Back
    day-to-day | questionable

    Gillaspia has been held out of the previous two games due to a back injury, and it has yet to be established if he will take the field against the Colts in Week 13.

  • Isaiah Coulter

    Neck
    day-to-day | questionable

    Coulter has been activated from the Injured Reserve/Designated for Return list after healing from a neck strain, and it is unclear if he will return Week 13 against the Colts.

  • Randall Cobb

    Toe
    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Cobb has been shuttled to the injured reserve list due to a toe injury, and there is no timetable for recovery.

  • Xavier Su'a-Filo

    Ankle
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Su'a-Filo has been designated for the Injured Reserve/Designated for Return list with a left ankle injury. The team has one week to activate him.

New England Patriots

  • Isaiah Wynn

    Knee
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Wynn has an injured knee, and it has yet to be determined if he will take the field for Sunday's tilt with the Cardinals.

  • J.J. Taylor

    Illness
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Taylor has been held out of the past three games with an illness. He is also tending to a quad injury, and it is unknown if he will return for Sunday's clash against the Cardinals.

  • Ryan Izzo

    Hamstring
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Izzo is nursing a hamstring injury, and it has yet to be determined if he will take the field against the Cardinals on Sunday.

  • Sony Michel

    Quadricep
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Michel has been activated from the Injured Reserve/Designated for Return list after healing from a quad injury, but it is unclear if he will return to the fold on Sunday against the Cardinals.

  • Shaq Mason

    Calf
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Mason is hampered by a calf injury, and it has yet to be announced if he will dress for Sunday's battle with the Cardinals.

  • Matthew Slater

    Knee
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Slater is laid up with a knee injury, and it is unclear if he will suit up against the Cardinals on Sunday.

  • Joe Thuney

    Ankle
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Thuney is tending to an ankle injury, leaving his status against the Cardinals on Sunday up in the air.

  • Justin Herron

    Ankle
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Herron has popped up on the the Injured Reserve/Designated for Return list due to an ankle injury, and his two-week window to be activated has started.