This is a tough one to get a read on, how weird, right? I mean, it’s only a game that absolutely doesn’t matter at all to the Patriots, but Tom Brady has supposedly asked to play and Bill Belichick has supposedly answered with “You bet, it’s your world, you’re in.” So Tom’s telling everyone and their mother that he’ll be playing this week. Now I don’t know Bill Belichick personally, but this seems like a great time to pull an awesome trick on just about everyone (including my fantasy team) and play Brady for about a quarter before giving way to some guy most of the fans don’t even know. That’s right, name the Pats’ back-up and I’ll give you some Flutie Flakes. Nope, Doug Flutie is on ESPN analyzing college football games, but if you answered Andrew Walter, you’re close – that guy’s the #3… Brian Hoyer is the right answer, and I’m not promising we’ll see him – but I’m telling you, Tom coming out saying he’s going to play seems way too easy to be real.
And while the Patriots have shown they’ll go for the wins late in the year instead of rolling over for their opponents, this is also a game that holds no significance for New England what-so ever. They know they’ll be playing next week and they know they’ll be playing a home game – this game means nothing.
For the Texans, this game is a chance at the playoffs – it’s not a “win and you’re in” situation, but a win keeps them alive. They have a powerful enough offensive attack to put pressure on the Patriots anyway – in a meaningless game for the Pats, I expect Houston to win by double digits.
New England Patriots @ Houston Texans (-7.5)