BOSTON (CBS) — After a tough, hard-fought loss to Tom Brady and the Buccaneers on national TV, the Patriots have a great chance to bounce back against the lowly Houston Texans.
Both teams sport 1-3 records, but the Patriots are the far superior team heading into Sunday’s matchup. Losing this weekend would not be acceptable, even with all the issues along the offensive line.
Here is how the WBZ/CBS Boston sports team sees Sunday’s tilt playing out.
Steve Burton, WBZ-TV
Now that Tom Brady is behind us, it’s on to Houston, where the Patriots are in a must-win situation. And the Houston Texans may be just what the doctor ordered to right the ship.
Both teams may be 1-3, but the Patriots are headed in the right direction — even though their offensive line is a big question mark right now. That needs to be fixed in a hurry, and the run game must get going.
Yes, they lost Stephon Gilmore, but getting Jamie Collins back can be a big lift for the defense.
Patriots 24, Texans 14
Dan Roche, WBZ-TV
Going on the road, down anywhere from two to four starting offensive linemen, and needing a win desperately. Sounds like a classic conservative road game of running the ball and playing for field position.
Patriots 20, Texans 17
Levan Reid, WBZ-TV
The circus has finally left town and now it’s time for the Patriots to clear the table and get down to business.
Playing the Houston Texans should be a “get right game” for this group. The Pats are better than the Texans and they need to show it.
They played with great intensity and energy against the Buccaneers. That needs to transfer to Sunday and the rest of the season and I think they start in Houston
Patriots 28, Texans 10
Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
On paper in August, this was a Patriots blowout waiting to happen. In reality in October, it’ll be a lot tougher.
That’s almost entirely due to the issues along the O-line for the Patriots. The O-line has been a major point of weakness if with the majority of the line being healthy. If they’re down three starters, it could get ugly.
That being said, the Patriots’ defense should be plenty good enough to keep the Texans at bay. But I’m not expecting a fun game all around.
Patriots 13, Texans 9
Matthew Geagan, CBS Boston
My only request for the Patriots this weekend is to run the ball. Please. Mac Jones has been solid, but he is getting destroyed out there. Give the kid a break against one of the NFL’s worst rush defenses. It shouldn’t matter if the offensive line is just a bunch of blocking dummies; the Patriots should still be able to run the ball against Houston.
The Patriots defense shouldn’t have any problems against the Texans, either. They may have another four-pick afternoon against Davis Mills.
Patriots 16, Texans 6
Tune in to Sunday’s Patriots-Texans showdown on WBZ-TV — the flagship station of the New England Patriots. Pregame coverage begins at 11:30 a.m. with Patriots GameDay, kickoff is set for 1 p.m., and after the game tune in to Patriots 5th Quarter — all on WBZ-TV!