Saturday, November 3, 2012

Week 9 AFC East game picks: Bills at Texans

Lead writer Nick St. Denis and AFC East Daily contributors Dan Begnoche and Sean Donovan pick the Buffalo Bills' AFC road bout with the Houston Texans.

Nick's take:
With the way Ryan Fitzpatrick has been staring down receivers this year, swat-happy Texans defender J.J. Watt, who also leads the NFL in sacks, should have a field day batting down passes. He'll probably make an interception. Texans running back Arian Foster is pretty good, too, and should have no problem carving up the Bills' awful run defense. Think blowout, with Fitzpatrick getting a stat-padding TD in the fourth quarter.
Prediction: Texans 35, Bills 10

Dan's take:
The Bills are hoping to continue the one-two success of Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller, particularly in the screen game, which may be the only thing that slows down Watt. The last time Buffalo faced a defense as strong as the Texans' was in Week 5, which ended in a 40-point route at the hands of the 49ers. Houston's offense isn't so bad either, touting a top 5 running back in Arian Foster and a top 10 quarterback in Matt Schaub.
Prediction: Texans 41, Bills 17

Sean's take:
Buffalo's three victories this season have all come against scoring offenses ranked 25th or worse, so Houston's second-ranked offensive unit is not a welcome sight for the pitiful Bills defense. To make matters worse, Fitzpatrick and the Bills' offense must contend with the Texans' third-ranked defense, one adept at forcing turnovers and stopping the run. This one will be as ugly as it looks on paper.
Prediction: Texans 34, Bills 6