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NFL Week 8: Thursday Night Football Texans vs Dolphins

The NFL standings are starting to take shape as the league heads into the mid-season, beginning with the Thursday night game between the Houston Texans and the Miami Dolphins. The matchup features two evenly-matched teams as both hold a 4-3 record so far and have similar PF/PA profiles (Texans are 155/144, Dolphins are 151/177). The only glaring difference is that the Texans are on a four game win streak, while Miami is coming off a loss in week 7 and are losers of 3 of their last 4. This will be a tough one to call, so check out our up to date NFL betting odds for more info on who has the edge in this hotly-contested matchup.

While the teams are evenly matched as far as statistics on the season go, Miami is under more scrutiny as they have lost three of their last four after starting out 3-0. Their week 7 loss to the Lions (32-21) at home was particularly devastating, as Miami gave up a touchdown early and never recovered. QB Brock Osweiler was 22/31 passing, and the defense gave up 248 rushing yards in that game. This week, the Dolphins will also be without wide receivers Albert Wilson (hip) and Kenny Stills (groin)

Osweiler said that the team will just have to do without the two stars WRs, who have been the biggest playmakers this year for the Dolphins.

"Those guys will be missed because they are talented players," Osweiler said of Wilson and Stills. "But injuries are going to happen. It's all about the next-man approach."

Also for the Dolphins, Danny Amendola was limited in practice on Monday. DeVante Parker will probably play after being inactive, and Ryan Tannehill (shoulder) is still out.

The Texans, meanwhile are on a tear. Winners of their last four, the Texans overcame a rough start to the season in which they lost three close games. Many teams would have buckled under the pressure at that point, but the Texans successfully turned things around and have positioned themselves as the top team in the NFC South. The defense has limited opposing teams to less than 200 yards passing on four different occasions this year, and while the offense has its ups and downs, QB Deshaun Watson is a legitimate two-way threat. Injury-wise, the Texans, are in better shape than Miami; they are without cornerbacks Aaron Colvin (ankle) and Kevin Johnson (concussion), but both have already missed games during the win streak. The Texans were without OL Zach Fulton (ankle), LB Brian Peters (ankle) and TE Ryan Griffin (illness) in practice on Monday, however, so there is no guarantee they will play on Thursday. Watson has been playing the last four games with a minor chest injury, but there is no indication that he will miss Thursday's game. He was a full participant in the last Texan's practice.

Historically, the Texans have gotten the better of the Dolphins in head to head play. Houston has won 7 of the 8 matchups and has an overall combined score of 195-169. Miami won the last matchup which was almost exactly three years ago on 10/25/2015, however, 44-26.

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