The Colts and Texans kick off the battle for the AFC South on September 11. Will Davis Mills and the Texans get the best of Matt Ryan and the new look Colts?
It’s the first week of the NFL season and the battle for the AFC South starts deep in the heart of the Lone Star State. The Colts are traveling down to Houston to take on Davis Mills and the Texans. The team is considered heavy favorites against a Texans team who they outscored 62-3 in their last two meetings. Texans Insider Contributing Writers Louie Stewart and Max O’Donnell and Contributing Writer Justin Perkins and Managing Editor Meghan Hall of the Indy Intercept take their best shot at score predictions.
Louie Stewart: Colts 27, Texans 24
“The Texans and Colts rivalry is one of my favorite things in sports, although the last few years have been a little more one-sided than I would like. While last year’s final scores were abysmal, I don’t expect a repeat of that caliber with an improved Texans roster. Expect a high-tempo game with lots of emphasis on big plays. And while I see the Texans putting up a valiant fight, the inexperience of several key rookies ultimately leads to a narrow loss.”
Max O’Donnell: Texans 24, Colts 23
“I expect the Texans to win this game. They can do this by getting defensive pressure on Quarterback Matt Ryan. On the offensive side of the ball, they need a reliable run game and that starts with rookie Running Back Dameon Pierce. My standout player to watch for in this game is rookie Safety Jalen Pitre.”
Justin Perkins: Colts 27, Texans 10
“The Texans have gotten better. Rookie Dameon Pierce is expected to be the starting Running Back and has shown promise this preseason. Quarterback Davis Mills showed consistency in his first season last year and will be teamed up with former Colts Offensive Coordinator Pep Hamilton. Additionally, Rookie Cornerback Derek Stingley, Jr. is a nice piece that strengthens the backside of the Texans defensive unit.
That said, I think the Texans defense will be their Achilles heel and the team will be too much for them to handle. Quarterback Matt Ryan has taken command of the offense and Linebacker Shaquille Leonard (if he plays) is leading the charge on defense.”
Meghan Hall: Texans 20, Colts 17
“The last decade has not been very kind to the team in Week One games. They are 1-9 in the last ten years and are shockingly 0-4 under Head Coach Frank Reich. It doesn’t matter who the starting Quarterback is or who is on the roster; the wins simply don’t come.
Despite outscoring the Texans 62-3 in their last two meetings, their inability to win Week One games cripples the team and adds to the investable slow starts that have also plagued Reich’s tenure. Additionally, the new look offense is very young with not a lot of proven production at the Wide Receiver and Tight End positions. I’m placing the team on upset alert.”