Houston Texans vs. Miami Dolphins
Sunday – October 25 – 12:00pm CT
Sun Life Stadium – Miami, FL
The Houston Texans, fresh off an impressive 31-20 showing against the Jacksonville Jaguars, travel to Miami looking for their third victory of the season with a win over the Dolphins which would bring their record to 3-4. Coach Bill O’Brien’s decision to go with Brian Hoyer last week over Ryan Mallet was one that worked out well for him. Hoyer provided the kind of control of the offense that O’Brien envisioned when naming him the starter in preseason. Looking sharp as he completed 24 of 36 passes for 293 yards and three touchdowns. It should also be noted that Hoyer went without an interception, something he struggled with previously.
The Texans hope to prevent the Dolphins interim coach Dan Campbell from logging the second win on his record. Playing inspired ball for the first time all season, the firing of Joe Philbin along with the subsequent promoting of Campbell, seemed to rally the troops last Sunday. An easy victory over the Tennessee Titans, 38-10, they will hope to continue to ride the waves of the high they were on. They may need all the help they can get since they haven’t fared too well against the Texans in recent history.
Aside from Hoyer’s solid play, the offense got a boost from the return of Arian Foster as well. Although he didn’t have a great day rushing the ball, toting it 18 times for only 53 yards, the Jaguars defense committed eight in the box to slow him. If the Dolphins try that same approach, Hoyer must find a way to exploit the secondary. Receiver DeAndre Hopkins is playing like a top 5 receiver in the league at this moment. He hauled in 10 catches for 148 yards with two touchdowns against Jacksonville on Sunday. Foster also provided production out the back field for Hoyer by snagging 5 check down passes for 59 yards.
The defense of the Texans have their hands full with the very capable Ryan Tannehill under center for Miami. He turned in a solid performance against the Titans last Sunday passing for two touchdowns while completing 22 of 29 for 266 yards. Out of nowhere appeared running back Lamar Miller against the Titans. Rushing for only 131 yards the first four games, he broke loose for 113 and a touchdown. Linebacker Brian Cushing had 12 tackles last Sunday, he must have a repeat performance if the Dolphins decide to feature Miller in the run game. The defense managed to get three sacks last week, none from All Pro defensive end J.J. Watt. He will look to make his acquaintance often to Tannehill in the backfield.
Prediction: Houston 21 – Miami 17