The injury-riddled Los Angeles Chargers (1-2) will look to get back on track when they travel to NRG Stadium to take on the winless Houston Texans (0-2-1).
While Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (ribs) gutted out last week’s 38-10 home loss to Jacksonville, he didn’t play up to his typical standards. The Los Angeles defense didn’t offer much resistance against the Jaguars’ impressive duo of Trevor Lawrence and James Robinson.
Meanwhile, the Texans suffered a heartbreaking 23-20 loss to the Bears in Chicago, as Davis Mills threw an interception late in the fourth quarter that set up Cairo Santos‘ game-winning field goal.
Something will have to give in this Week 4 matchup, so let’s dig into the odds to find our Los Angeles vs Houston best bets.
Chargers vs Texans Odds
At FanDuel Sportsbook, the Chargers opened as 6.5-point road favorites but that line has been bet down to 5.5. The total is sitting at 44.5 points, which is just below average on this Week 4 slate.
Chargers vs Texans Implied Totals
Chargers 25, Texans 19.5
Oddsmakers are expecting the Chargers to come out with a relative low-scoring victory on the road, which wasn’t the case when these two teams last December. Houston was a 13-point underdog then, but pulled off a 41-29 upset to damage Los Angeles’ playoff hopes.
Chargers vs Texans Pick of the Day
Read more on this Chargers vs Texans bet below.
Chargers vs Texans Prediction
Chargers 20, Texans 17
This is a tricky game to predict as it is hard to know who is going to suit up, let alone be effective, for the Chargers.
Herbert was clearly still working through his rib injury against Jacksonville, but Los Angeles was also missing WR Keenan Allen (hamstring), top corner J.C. Jackson (foot), and center Corey Linsley (knee).
Things got even worse in Sunday’s loss, as Pro Bowl LT Rashawn Slater (torn biceps) and WR Jalen Guyton (torn ACL) suffered season-ending injuries. Top pass-rusher Joey Bosa (groin) also exited early and is considered week-to-week.
Los Angeles should look to feature running back Austin Ekeler early and often against a Houston defense that has allowed 202.3 rushing yards per game. Ekeler has been a disappointment thus far, rushing for just 80 yards on 32 carries in three games, but should be in a great spot to break out of his early-season funk.
The Texans will counter with the combination of rookie RB Dameon Pierce and veteran Rex Burkhead. Burkhead gashed the Chargers in their meeting last season, rushing for 149 yards and a pair of scores. Los Angeles’ run defense has improved since then, but there should still be opportunities on the ground for the Texans.
Chargers vs Texans Bet Tips
Here are some Chargers vs Texans betting trends to consider before placing your bets:
- Houston is 2-0-1 against the spread this season, while Los Angeles is 2-1.
- The Under is 2-1 in both Texans and Chargers games this year.
- Houston was 6-2 ATS as a home underdog in 2021.
Chargers vs Texans Best Bets
Under 44.5 Total Points (-114) at FanDuel Sportsbook
This looks to be a clash of offensive tempos, as the Chargers rank sixth in situation neutral pace, while the Texans rank 23rd. However, I’m expecting Los Angeles to slow things down this week as it works to integrate the run game.
Coach Brandon Staley said on Monday, “We’re going to try and get Austin [Ekeler] as many touches as we can." After running the ball on just 12 plays in a blowout loss, I believe him.
This is a great matchup to get the running game going, and will take some of the stress off Herbert and a banged-up receiving core. It will also keep the clock churning, which I think helps this game go Under the total.
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Texans +5.5 (-114) at FanDuel Sportsbook
The Texans haven’t won a game this season, but their point differential is only -10. Houston has been competitive, despite Davis Mills and the passing game struggling.
The Chargers are the more talented team on paper, but they are also the walking wounded right now. Houston should have some success against a retooled LA offensive line, which is missing its most important piece.
In what projects to be a low-scoring game, taking the points with the home underdog is probably the way to go. Don’t be surprised if the Texans win this game outright.
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