The NFL 2016 preseason week concludes when the Texans and the 49ers face off Sunday evening. The game takes place at Levi’s Stadium in San Francisco, and kickoff is at 7:00 p.m. EST. Preseason football provides fans with the action they have been missing dearly since last February, but choosing the right NFL picks during preseason football is often a crapshoot. The current betting line/spread for the 49ers/Texans game has the 49ers favored by a line of -3 and the over/under is at 37.
About The 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers finished last season with an appalling record of 5-11. At the end of their catastrophic year, coach Jim Tomsula was relieved of his duties and replaced by Chip Kelly. Now the 49ers have the pleasure of adjusting to Kelly’s difficult style. Offensively, the 49ers have a quarterback dilemma, as Blaine Gabbert and Colin Kaepernick are battling it out for the starting position.
— San Francisco 49ers (@49ers) August 14, 2016
Kaepernick was sidelined in 2015 in Week 11 of the NFL season via an injury, and Gabbert took over. Kaepernick only had a 59 percent completion rate with five picks and only six touchdown passes. In contrast, Gabbert had a 63.1 percent in completions with seven picks and ten touchdowns. The pair of quarterbacks are decent, but not great, and the two will be sharing the field Sunday evening trying to earn the No. 1 position.
Running backs Mike Davis, Carlos Hyde, and Kelvin Taylor are the young starters, and they show the team some promise offensively. There is not much promise, however, when it comes to the wide receivers aside from Torrey Smith. To say the 49ers have struggled defensively would be a monumental understatement; NaVarro Bowman, Ahmad Brooke, Antoine Bethea, and Arik Armstead are hopeful to change that around in 2016.
About The Texans
The Houston Texans finished 2015 with a record of 9-7 and are the defending AFC South champions. The Texans struggled in the quarterback arena last year, but with Brock Osweiler leading the charge this year, they now have some promise in that category. Osweiler took over for Manning in 2015 when the legendary NFL quarterback had to sit out because of an injury. Brock completed 61.8 percent of his passes with ten touchdowns and six interceptions. The young QB will be working with some great offensive talent, including Cecil Shorts, Lamar Miller, and DeAndre Hopkins.
In contrast to the 49ers, to say that the Texans defense is spectacular would be a monumental understatement. Lead by defensive superstar J.J. Watt, the Texans finished 3rd in the NFL for total yards allowed in 2015 — Jadeveon Clowney, Vince Wilfork, and Brian Cushing worked well alongside their leader.
Texans/49ers NFL Picks For The Preseason 2016 Week 1 Game
Betting on preseason games for the NFL is always tricky and the 2016 preseason is no different when deciding on NFL picks — this matchup should be a low scoring game and the over/under should probably be left alone, but a small lean on the under is the play here for those that can’t help themselves. The 49ers are a team that shouldn’t be backed, regardless of the spread, until they can prove that they are trustworthy. This 2016 NFL season doesn’t look overly promising for them so that may not happen for quite some time.
.@BraxtonMiller5 touchdowns are pretty to watch.
They’re even better in slow motion.https://t.co/Ui8A6LjPcK
— #TexansCamp (@HoustonTexans) August 12, 2016
There is no reason why the Texans shouldn’t win this game outright, but surprises happen all the time in the NFL. The Texans may be resting some of their most skilled players, but they should still play for a few reps. There is a chance that Texans’ quarterback Osweiler will play longer than usual for a starting QB in an NFL preseason game, to help him get acclimated to the Texans, so that gives them the edge compared to the QB dilemma the 49ers are having. The Texans are a better team than the 49ers, but San Francisco is playing at home and some would say that gives them a psychological edge.
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The 49ers have major depth issues and the Texans are more consistent offensively and on the defensive side as well. Taking the Texans and the points and perhaps a small play on the under are the NFL picks for this game to closeout week 1 of the NFL 2016 preseason.
[Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images]