By Charles Jay
The San Diego Chargers have lost several games that perhaps they should have won. But they can’t have any excuses at this point, because that’s just the way the ball bounces in the NFL. At 4-6, they are still not all the way out of it in the playoff race, however, and so they are happy to be refreshed with their bye week and perhaps even a little healthier as they go into Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans. This one will begin at 1 PM ET at NRG Stadium in Houston, televised regionally by CBS, and BetAnySports customers can watch it and place wagers in real time through the mechanism provided by Live Betting Ultra.
San Diego is coming off a hard-breaking 31-24 loss to the Miami Dolphins, in which Philip Rivers threw his fourth pick of the fourth quarter, which was taken back all the way for a touchdown by Kiko Alonso. So in a manner of speaking, it was a good thing they had the bye week in order to get their heads clear. Rivers now has more interceptions in the first 10 games than Houston quarterback Brock Osweiler, and that is the situation he has to avoid in this game against the Texans, even though Houston has not proven to be all that opportunistic this season, with only five interceptions.
Houston currently leads the AFC division with a 6-4 record, and they are coming off a disappointing game themselves, as they lost 27-20 to the Oakland Raiders in Mexico City.
In the NFL betting odds posted on this game by the folks at BetAnySports, The Chargers are slight favorite:
San Diego Chargers -2.5 (-115)
Houston Texans +2.5 (-105)
Over 46 points -110
Under 46 points -110
One of the big areas of concern for the Texans in this game is that they just could not get a handle on covering the Oakland running backs out of the backfield. In fact, they allowed them 199 receiving yards, although they held them to just 30 yards of net rushing. Rivers wishes that he could have his great safety valve, Danny Woodhead, but the little fireplug is out for the season. So he will look for Melvin Gordon, who has 33 receptions, in addition to 838 yards on the ground. In an interesting reversal, Gordon, who did not score a rushing touchdown last season, has chalked up nine of them this year.
And Rivers looks forward to having Travis Benjamin back in the lineup as well. He’s been nursing a sprained knee, but he is probably the guy most likely to make a big play for this club. Well, maybe not – Tyrell Williams is averaging 16.7 yards per reception, so as BetAnySports patrons can see, Rivers is somehow making things happen even without Keenan Allen, who was lost early in the schedule.
The Chargers’ six losses have come by a total of 29 points, so they are usually in the ballgame. And interestingly enough, they stop the run better than most people give them credit for, as they have allowed only 87.5 yards per game and 3.9 yards per carry. But they have committed 22 turnovers, which creates a tough situation, no matter how you look at it.
One of the adjustments Houston has to make on offense is getting Will Fuller into the action a little bit more. Yes, he has been dealing with a bad knee, but he has also averaged less than 30 yards receiving over the last seven games, and had only one catch in the Mexico City game. Remember that the Texans drafted Fuller in order to provide a viable complement to DeAndre Hopkins, so they really need to implement that.
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