Texans vs Colts Predictions & Best Bets

Last Updated: Jan 4, 2024

The 2023 National Football League campaign is down to its final weekend.

Among its many mouth-watering games, Week 18 features an all-or-nothing AFC South matchup between the Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium, with both teams sporting identical 9-7 overall records.

The winner of this game will secure a spot in the NFL postseason. However, there’s also a chance that a win for either team would see them leapfrog the Jacksonville Jaguars atop the division, assuming the Jags lose on the road against the Tennessee Titans.

Let’s take a deep dive and examine some odds, predictions, best bets, prop bets, and offer up a same-game parlay in what promises to be a scintillating game with significant postseason implications between the Texans and Colts as the Week 18 NFL slate takes center stage.

Texans vs Colts Odds

NFL odds used for this Houston vs Indianapolis preview were found at DraftKings Sportsbook and are current as of Tuesday, Jan. 2, at 12:00 p.m. ET.

  • Moneyline: Colts (-115) • Texans (-105)
  • Spread: Colts -1 (-108) • Texans +1 (-112)
  • Total Points: Over 47.5 (-110) • Under 47.5 (-110)
  • Implied Score: Colts 24.25, Texans 23.25

Texans vs Colts Predictions

Score Pick: Texans 27, Colts 24

In a game that features two of the most surprising teams in football, the Colts enter this game as a slight one-point home favorite facing off against rookie phenom C.J. Stroud and the Texans.

The game total for this one currently sits at 47.5, meaning professional oddsmakers and sportsbooks are anticipating a high-scoring encounter with everything to play for between two AFC South rivals.

Although Garden Minshew has done a terrific job steadying the ship for the Colts this season after a barrage of injuries, the edge at the QB position goes to the Texans.

In a game of this magnitude, and with such little margin for error, that could make all the difference as the NFL regular season concludes.

Look for Stroud to lead his team to victory and secure Houston’s first playoff berth since 2019.

Texans vs Colts Best Bets & Props

Texans +1 (-112)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

Our first best bet will target the Texans against the spread on a single-unit wager.

Houston has enjoyed a renaissance-type campaign in 2023 and is right on the cusp of a playoff spot, led mainly by Stroud’s strong play at quarterback.

Of the list of 40 starting quarterbacks with a minimum of 128 passing attempts, the former Ohio State standout ranks third in the NFL in Air Yards to the Sticks (0.3), second in Average Completed Air Yards (7.3), and sixth in Passer Rating (99.1), per NFL Next Gen Stats.

The Texans have also been stellar on the defensive side of the ball under first-year head coach DeMeco Ryans. As a team, Houston ranks third in the NFL in Rushing Yards Conceded Per Game (88.5) and eighth in Third Down Conversion Percentage (37%).

Houston also owns a 4-3 record ATS away from home, which carries with it a 57.1% success rate.

Look for the Texans to cover the spread en route to clinching a spot in the playoffs at an enticing (-112) price point as my NFL bet of the day.

Over 47.5 (-110)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

Our second best bet will pinpoint the Over on the game total of 47.5.

Saturday’s matchup features two teams who love to play fast, up-tempo football, which bodes well for those betting on the Over.

From a sheer scoring perspective, the Texans and Colts rank among the top 15 in the NFL in Points-Per-Game. In addition, Houston ranks 13th in the NFL in Pace of Play, averaging 52.2 plays per game, with Indianapolis ranking 10th with 64.5.

Both teams have also shown a propensity for getting into the red zone and finishing drives, with the Colts ranked 11th in Red Zone Scoring Attempts Per Game (3.4) and the Texans ranked 14th (3.2), per NFL Team Rankings.

When you consider a climate-controlled indoor setting, combined with both teams’ efficiency and explosiveness on offense, there’s no real concrete evidence to suggest this game fails to see 48 total points or more.

Take the Over at (-110) odds.

Texans Over 24.5 (+110)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

Our third and final best bet will target an alternative wager on the Over on Houston’s team total in points, currently sitting at 24.5 at plus money.

As mentioned, the Texans have put up some impressive offensive numbers this season, ranking 10th in the NFL in Total Yards Per Game (344.6) and seventh in Net Team Passing Yards (3,927) via The Football Database. This has greatly enhanced Houston’s ability to generate offense, sustain drives, and keep their defense off the field during critical junctures of games.

On the Indianapolis side of things, the Colts have struggled to get key defensive stops all year long, and heading into Week 18, rank 19th in the NFL in Opponents’ Third Down Conversions Per Game (5.3) and 26th in Opponents’ Average Time of Possession (31:08), per NFL Team Rankings.

In a game that’s expected to see a ton of lead changes, look for the Texans to exceed their team total prop in points at intriguing (+110) odds.

Texans vs Colts Same Game Parlay

Texans vs Colts SGP (+184)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

  • Texans (-105)
  • Texans 1H Over 10.5 (-108)

Our same-game parlay will target the Texans’ first-half team total of 10.5 points, combined with them winning outright. Let’s begin with Houston’s first-half team total.

Over the course of the season, the Texans currently rank 15th in the NFL, averaging 10.8 points-per-game in the first half. In addition, Houston also owns a 52.83% First Half Time of Possession Share, which ranks fourth in the NFL, per NFL Team Rankings.

Houston’s elite possession numbers should allow them to keep the ball and ultimately score at least 11 points over the game’s first 30 minutes.

Rounding out our same-game parlay is the Texans on the moneyline.

After missing weeks 15 and 16 due to injury, Stroud returned to the Texans’ lineup just in time.

First, Houston swept aside the Tennessee Titans in Week 17. Stroud and Co. will need one more victory to secure a spot in the postseason for one of the best “feel good” stories in the NFL this year.

After a 0-2 start to the 2023 campaign, Houston has since posted a 9-5 record and has been one of football’s most remarkable teams. This matchup is shaping up to be vastly different from the one that saw the Colts post a convincing 31-20 win over the Texans in Week 2.

Combine the two plays at (+184) odds.


Domenic Lunardo

Domenic is a freelance sportswriter at The Game Day. Previously, he wrote for The Hockey Writers, Prime Time Sports Talk, and Faceoff Sports Network. Over the past few years, Domenic has provided analysis more frequently in the sports betting industry and maintains an active presence on Twitter, primarily posting daily betting cards across the NHL, NFL, MLB, NBA, college basketball, and soccer. Although Domenic has a diverse sporting background, he specializes in hockey and football.

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