With quarterback Matt Schaub continuing to exercise a quick trigger finger, the Houston Texans are clicking on offense.
The Buffalo Bills, on the other hand, are not rolling up any style points. The Bills play at a snail’s pace, relying on a stingy defense and what little offense rotating quarterbacks Ryan Fitzpatrick and Trent Edwards are able to produce.
The Bills host the Texans today, and The Gold Sheet handicapper Bruce Marshall said he expects an ugly game to stay under the total of 411/2.
“The Texans have been able to slow the pace of their games in recent weeks due to improvement from their defense, which has begun to stop the run with some consistency,” Marshall said. “Houston is comfortable with this tempo because of Schaub’s accuracy and an emerging ground game.”
Schaub is the NFL leader with 2,074 passing yards and 16 touchdowns, but the Texans have gone under the total in three of their past four games.
Buffalo has not scored more than 20 points while going under in four of its past five games.
Marshall, 5-2 with recommended totals plays this season, outlines technical notes on other Week 8 games:
• Minnesota at Green Bay: The past three and four of the past five in the series went over the total. Brett Favre and the Vikings are 5-2 over this season. The Packers are 21-10 over in their past 31 games. Edge: Over.
• San Francisco at Indianapolis: The Colts have covered five straight and are on a 15-game regular-season winning streak. However, 49ers coach Mike Singletary is 9-3-2 against the spread (ATS) in his past 14. Edge: 49ers.
• Carolina at Arizona: Panthers coach John Fox is 0-2 straight up and ATS as a road ‘dog this season, and 2-9 ATS in the past 11 in the role. The Cards are 3-0 under the total at home this season, but still 19-10 over as hosts since 2006. Edge: Cardinals, Over.
• N.Y. Giants at Philadelphia: The Giants are 30-11 ATS since early 2007. Five of the past six in the series went under. The Giants have covered the past four at Philadelphia, and the road team is 7-1 ATS in the past eight in the series. Edge: Giants, Under.
Compiled by Las Vegas Review-Journal sports writer Matt Youmans.BETWEEN THE LINES
Three reasons to like the Vikings-Packers over (47)
• The last time they played, they combined for 53 points, and you can expect the same kind of offensive display.
• The Vikings have gone over the total in four of their last five games, and the Packers have not scored fewer than 20 points in a game.
• Both teams are averaging more than 200 yards passing and more than 100 yards rushing per game. This should be an offensive-minded game.
Three reasons to like the Giants-Eagles over (44)
• Neither defense is as good as its reputation would make you believe. The Giants have been exposed the last two games.
• Both teams average 46 combined points per game and have gone over the total nine of 12 games.
• The Eagles pass more than 50 percent of the time, and with Brian Westbrook injured, it should increase Philadelphia’s dependence on the passing game.
Last week: 0-2
– MAL VAN VALKENBURG / LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL