NFL Playoffs: Kansas City Chiefs at Houston Texans Wild Card Playoff Preview

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Jan 07, 2016 09:44 PM EST
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Head coach Bill O'Brien and Arian Foster #23 of the Houston Texans
Head coach Bill O'Brien and Arian Foster #23 of the Houston Texans react to a call in the first half of their game against the Kansas City Chiefs at NRG Stadium on September 13, 2015 in Houston, Texas."

 History is on the side of the Kansas City Chiefs as they have won their last 10 games in a row and Andy Reid is 5-0 against the Houston Texans.

Let's also not forget that the Chiefs have already beaten the Texans in week 1 of the 2015 NFL season. In that game JJ Watt had 9 tackles and 2 sacks however Smith has been sacked 45 times this season and has yet to fumble the football. Smith also went 312 passes without an interception until the Chiefs week 17 matchup with the Oakland Raiders. The Chiefs have also outscored their opponents by a margin of 27.8 points to 12.8.  

Realistically if we are comparing quarterbacks both are perceived as average, unremarkable guys however they are playing better than most quarterbacks in the NFL. It is actually kind of remarkable how similar they are, Alex Smith and Brian Hoyer both have 7 interceptions on the season, both have a 60+ pass completion percentage (Smith 65.3%/Hoyer 60.7 %),  and both have a quarterback rating above 90 on the season (Smith 95.4/Hoyer 91.4).

The differences come with injuries and Hoyer has had 2 concussions this season so far and let's not forget was benched at one point for Ryan Mallett.

Smith has played all 16 games 10 of which he has won in a row. That is not the only difference though, Smith has been sacked 45 times this season however Hoyer has only been sacked 25, however with the Texans losing their starting left tackle in week 17, that number is likely to increase.

With the Chiefs being 4th in overall sacks with 47 their defensive line will be a major factor in this game especially with the return of Justin Houston for a hyper extended knee. The Chiefs have held opposing quarterbacks to a rating of 76.0 and are 2nd in the league with 22 interceptions.

The marquee matchup for this game should be rookie superstar cornerback Marcus Peters versus DeAndre Hopkins, in their first game Hopkins had 9 receptions for 98 yards and 2 touchdowns. Too be fair this was Peter's first game in the NFL and the rookie has amassed 8 interceptions and 2 interception return touchdowns.

Even with JJ Watt the Texans are grossly overmatched in this game. It will be a tough hill to climb for Hoyer and this Texans offense. 



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