Texans vs. Patriots: Who has the upper hand?

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The history between the Texans and Patriots (KTRK)

In as many ways as the Houston Texans and the New England Patriots look forward to the gridiron, the two teams share a lot of similarities.

Look no further than Texans head coach Bill O'Brien. He spent four years on the Patriots coaching staff, under the tutelage of Bill Belichick.

In seven regular season meetings, the Texans have only mustered one victory against the Patriots. The last win came on Jan. 3, 2010 at-then Reliant Stadium with Matt Schaub at quarterback.

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Last year, a Brock Osweiler led team was no match for Tom Brady and the Pats in the postseason.

So, what is it going to take for the Texans to turn the tables around and beat the Patriots?

COACHING
O'Brien has led the Texans to two straight AFC South Division championships. His former boss, Coach Belichick, has the led the Patriots to 16 consecutive winning seasons and five Super Bowl championships. The coaching battle comes down to the X's and O's.

QUARTERBACK?

Deshaun Watson's first start at QB resulted in a win, and his 49-yard scramble was the game's only touchdown. He appears to have cemented his place as starting quarterback for the Texans.

Quarterback play will be key for the Texans, especially with future Hall of Famer Tom Brady under the center for the Patriots.

Who gets the nod here? Unfortunately, the Patriots.

RUNNING GAME
The play of Lamar Miller, Alfred Blue and rookie D'Onta Foreman will be key against the Patriots defense. So far the only rushing touchdown the Texans have scored was the 49-yard run by QB Deshaun Watson. Last season, the Texans leaned heavily on Miller and the running game -- quite possibly due to quarterback issues.

Running back Mike Gillislee scored 3 rushing touchdowns in the Patriots first game.

Advantage in this area? Patriots.

DEFENSE
There is the old saying that "offense wins games, defense wins championships." No team in the NFL has a defensive player that can change a game the way J.J. Watt can. Although he has yet to record a sack this season, the final tackle to end the game against the Bengals shows he still has the drive.

The Chiefs scored 42 points against the Patriots defense in Week 1 of the season, but do not expect that to be the norm.

Advantage in this area? Draw.


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