The Cincinnati Bengals will host the Houston Texans on Thursday Night Football to get Week 2 started. Kickoff is set for 8:25 EST at Paul Brown Stadium and will be televised on the NFL Network.

Oddsmakers currently have the Bengals listed as a 4-point home favorite with the total set at 38.5 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 2 betting odds and links to more game previews.

Texans vs Bengals Vegas Game Odds & Betting Preview

Houston didn’t look like a playoff contender in Week 1. The Texans lost 29-7 at home to the Jacksonville Jaguars as a 6-point favorite. The Texans managed just 203 total yards and turned it over 4 times in defeat.

It wasn’t much better for the Bengals, who were shutout at home 20-0 by division rival Baltimore. Cincinnati had a very similar offensive stat line with 221 total yards and 5 turnovers. Like Houston, the Bengals went off as a home favorite (-3) in their opener.

These two teams faced off in Week 16 (Christmas Eve) last year, with Houston winning 12-10 at home. The Texans have won 7 of the previous 8 meetings, including a couple Wild Card games in the postseason.

Free NFL Predictions & Free ATS Pick: Bengals -4

Hard to feel confident backing either of these teams given how poorly they played in Week 1. With that said, I trust the Bengals a lot more in this spot. Especially given the advantage of playing at home on short rest.

Click on the link for more free NFL picks from our expert handicappers.

I just think the Texans are emotionally drained with everything involving Hurricane Harvey. Not to mention they will be short-handed in this one. The Bengals have five players in the concussion protocol, which is hard to get cleared to play on a short week. That includes starting middle linebacker Brian Cushing and all 3 tight ends on their 53-man roster. Not to mention J.J. Watt suffered a finger injury that limited him in the opener. The offensive line is also without left tackle Duane Brown (holdout) and guard Jeff Allen left the last game with an ankle injury.

Another big negative for Houston right now is the quarterback situation. Head coach Bill O’Brien pulled the plug on starter Tom Savage in favor of rookie Deshaun Watson in the 2nd half. O’Brien hasn’t named a starter yet for the game, but I don’t really think it matters. The Texans have no chemistry on offense and while the fans love Watson’s playmaking ability, he’s got a long way to go to be an effective starter.

As for the Bengals, I believe there’s at least reason to be optimistic about the offense getting back on track. For starters, the Ravens defense is the real deal and just might be the best in the NFL this year. A lot of teams are going to struggle to move the ball against Baltimore. At the same time, it was just a bad day at the office for Andy Dalton, who was responsible for all 5 turnovers. He’s at least got some weapons to work with and should be able to take advantage of the Texans defense on a short week of preparation.

Going against Houston when they aren’t the favorite has been a wise investment of late. The Texans are just 10-19 ATS as an underdog since O’Brien became the head coach. At the same time, Houston has gone a miserable 1-6 ATS in their last 7 when playing on Thursday. As for the Bengals, they have rebounded well in the past, going 6-2 ATS in their last 8 after a loss at home as a favorite to a division rival.