The Houston Texans, despite never having won anything in their short existence, were this year’s sexy pick to grab the AFC South title. While a good number of people jumped on the Texans bandwagon after revelations about Peyton Manning’s neck, some were with them mid-summer, even before the NFL lockout ended. Regardless of when certain individuals started singing the praises of Gary Kubiak’s squad, it rewarded both early and late comers with a 10-6 run to a division crown and its first ever post-season appearance. Houston now, however, finds itself staring long odds squarely in the face with the latest 2012 Super Bowl Odds listing the team at +2000 moneyline odds to capture the Lombardi Trophy.
Had the Texans reached the playoffs with their full compliment of players, including quarterback Matt Schaub and linebacker Mario Williams, they most certainly would have a better opportunity to foil the Patriots or Ravens. Houston had reeled off four straight wins prior to Schaub going down, and it had the look of a team capable of making a deep post-season run.
The Texans turned to backup Matt Leinart after Schuab season ended and the former Heisman winner lasted just one half before suffering his own season ending injury. Rookie T.J. Yates was next up, but, despite pedestrian play from the North Carolina product, Houston managed to extend its win streak to seven games.
Some serious chinks in the offense armor began to emerge over the last three weeks of the regular season, though, calling into question just how long the club’s first playoff showing would last. The Texans averaged just 17 points per game in their final three games, and their much improved defense yielded an average of 23.3 points per contest.
Because of that closing run many felt (including yours truly) that the Bengals, despite having their own handful of issues, could spring an upset in last weekend’s Wild Card round. Houston had none of that, though, as it pounded Cincinnati 31-10 at Reliant Stadium.
This weekend’s task is much more difficult with the Ravens, an 8-0 home team, welcoming the Texans to M&T Bank Stadium. Houston, with Schaub, already experienced just how fun Baltimore can be when they hooked up with the Ravens in mid-October. John Harbaugh’s squad won the game 29-14 despite a defensive touchdown from the Texans.
Houston’s defense is capable of limiting Baltimore’s occasionally lackluster offense and the Texans have a rushing attack capable of keeping the Ravens honest, but if you were wondering about the long Super Bowl odds, look no further than Sunday’s game.
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Houston Texans 2012 Super Bowl Odds: Provided by JustBet.cx
Odds to win the AFC Championship +950
Odds to win the 2012 Super Bowl +2000