The NFL returns to Mexico City for the first time in 11 years when the Oakland Raiders square off against the Houston Texans on Monday night in a battle of AFC division leaders. While the Raiders are listed as the home team, they may not mind playing across the border since they are 5-0 away from Oakland this season.
“We kind of expect it to be like a road game for the offense and special teams and home game for the defense in that our crowd is going to be really loud,” Raiders coach Jack Del Rio told reporters. Surging Oakland entered its bye with a three-game winning streak punctuated by a 30-20 victory over reigning Super Bowl champion Denver. Houston posted its first road win of the season with a 24-21 triumph at Jacksonville to open a 1 1/2-game lead in the AFC South. The Texans, winners of two straight, had been outscored 85-22 in losing their first three away from home.
TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.
LINE HISTORY: The Raiders opened the betting week as 5.5-point neutral site favorites and the public has bet them up slightly to their current number of -6. The total hit the betting board at 46.5 and has dropped down to 45 as of Sunday evening. Check out the complete history here.
WEATHER REPORT: The forecast is calling for partly cloudy skies and temperatures in the upper-50’s for Monday night’s game in Mexico City. Wind should not be a factor and the POP is at 1 percent.
Texans – RB L. Miller (Probable, ankle), NT V. Wilfork (Probable, groin), CB A. Bouye (Probable, ankle), T D. Brown (Questionable, knee), T C. Clark (Questionable, hip), DE J. Clowney (Questionable, wrist), S E. Pleasant (Questionable, neck), LB J. Simon (Questionable, shoulder), LB B. Peters (Questionable, quadricep), WR W. Fuller (Questionable, leg), RB J. Grimes (Questionable, illness), WR J. Strong (Out, ankle), RB A. Blue (Out, calf), DE J. Watt (Out For Season, back).
Raiders – CB S. Smith (Probable, shoulder), WR A. Cooper (Probable, back), RB L. Murray (Probable, ankle), DT S. McGee (Questionable, ankle), G V. Alexander (Questionable, ankle), LB A. Smith (Out Indefinitely, suspension), DE M. Edwards (Questionable, hip).
ABOUT THE TEXANS (6-3 SU, 5-3-1 ATS, 4-5 O/U): Brock Osweiler threw for a pair of touchdowns but only 99 yards at Jacksonville and has registered only 416 passing yards over his last three games. With Osweiler continuing to struggle, Houston leaned on its running game to carry the offense as Lamar Miller, the team’s other marquee free-agent signing, rushed for 83 yards to spark an attack that produced a season-high 181. DeAndre Hopkins had 111 receptions for 1,521 yards and 11 TDs last season, but he’s been limited to 56 yards or fewer in seven of the nine games. The Texans rank fourth in total defense, giving up 317.4 yards per game.
ABOUT THE RAIDERS (7-2 SU, 6-3 ATS, 7-2 O/U): Oakland is averaging 31 points during its three-game winning streak and is 6-1 in its last seven, tying it with Kansas City for first place in the AFC West. Derek Carr has been the driving force for the offense with 17 scoring passes and three interceptions, but he played a supporting role against the Broncos. While Carr failed to throw a TD pass for the first time and finished with a season-low 184 yards, running back Latavius Murray rambled for 114 yards and three scores. Defensive end Khalil Mack has recorded two sacks in back-to-back games and a total of six in the last four contests, boosting his season total to seven.
* Texans are 1-8 ATS in their last 9 Monday games.
* Raiders are 2-8-1 ATS in their last 11 Monday games.
* Under is 4-0 in Texans last 4 games after accumulating less than 150 yards passing in their previous game.
* Over is 5-1 in Raiders last 6 games overall.
COVERS CONSENSUS: The favorite Raiders are picking 69 percent of the point spread action and the Over is getting 66 percent of the total action. View full consensus data here.
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