2019 Sunday Night Football Schedule: Where to Watch New England Patriots vs. Houston Texans, TV Channel, Live Stream

The New England Patriots can clinch a playoff spot for the 11th consecutive season when they take on the Houston Texans on Sunday Night Football.

The Patriots improved to 10-1 with a 13-9 win over the Dallas Cowboys in Week 12 and would book a playoff berth if they beat Houston, provided Oakland fails to win in Kansas City.

Should the Raiders defeat the Chiefs, the Patriots would qualify for the playoffs as long as the Pittsburgh Steelers fail to beat the Cleveland Browns at home.

While the Patriots could join the New Orleans Saints as the only team with a postseason place secured by the end of Week 13, clinching a playoff spot would not equal job done yet.

New England has a one-game lead over Baltimore in the race for the No. 1 seed—and home advantage throughout the playoffs—in the AFC, but the Ravens hold the tiebreaker by virtue of their 37-20 triumph over the Patriots in Week 9.

Lamar Jackson tore New England to shreds four weeks ago and on Sunday the Patriots come up against a quarterback who is almost as dynamic as the runaway MVP candidate, in the shape of Deshaun Watson.

The 24-year-old has carried Houston to the top of the AFC South this season, throwing for 2,899 yards and 20 touchdowns, to which he's added 301 rushing yards and five scores on the ground.

Watson excels under the lights—he has 18 touchdown passes, three interceptions and a 118.6 rating in seven career primetime games—and Patriots safety Duron Harmon acknowledged the Texans quarterback could create New England problems on Sunday.

"He's an exceptional player who can do it all," he was quoted as saying by ESPN.

"He has a strong arm. An accurate arm. He's a tough kid who will get hit and get right back up and continue to find ways to lead his team.

"We have to do a good job of just trying to keep him in the pocket, and make him beat us from being in the pocket."

While Watson has been in stellar form this season, the same can be said of the Patriots defense, which ranks second in total defense and first in scoring defense.

New England has kept its opponents to 10 or less on the scoreboard seven times this season and will again rely on its defense on Sunday to stop Watson.

"We all know he's a very athletic guy with the ball in his hands," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said in his press conference earlier this week.

"[He is] dangerous, can score from anywhere at any time, doesn't take long. It'll be a big challenge for us for 60 minutes."

If the Patriots can clinch a playoff berth with a win in Houston, the Texans can close in on a postseason place themselves.

Houston reclaimed control of the AFC South with a crucial win over Indianapolis last week, which also erased its previous loss to the Colts in terms of head-to-head tiebreakers.

FiveThirtyEight's statistical projections give Houston a 75 percent chance of making the playoffs, a figure that could increase even further should it become only the second team this season to stop New England.

The Texans are bidding for a fourth AFC South title in six years under Bill O'Brien, but to take another step towards the postseason the former Patriots offensive coordinator must find a way to beat his former mentor.

O'Brien is 0-5 against Belichick since taking over the role of head coach in Houston and relishes the chance of going up against the six-time Super Bowl winner, whom he credits as the biggest influence in his career.

"I learned a lot," the Texans coach said in his press conference.

"I learned a lot about game planning and personnel and strategy. That was a very important time for me in my coaching career.

"It was probably a place where I learned the most."

Here's all you need to know ahead of Sunday.

Tom Brady, New England Patriots
Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots reacts during a game against the Dallas Cowboys at Gillette Stadium on November 24 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Adam Glanzman/Getty

When and where is the game?

The Houston Texans host the New England Patriots at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, on Sunday, December 1.

Kick-off is scheduled for 8:20 p.m. ET.

TV coverage

The game will be broadcast nationally by NBC.

Live stream

A live stream will be available via NBC's digital platforms, the NBC Sports website and fuboTV.


The Texans regained control of the AFC South with a 20-17 win over the Indianapolis, improving their season record to 7-4.

The Patriots, meanwhile, improved to 10-1 with a 13-9 home win over the Dallas Cowboys.

Series record

The two franchises have met nine times in their history, with the Patriots prevailing on all but one occasion, including a 27-20 win in New England in September last year.

The six-time Super Bowl winners also won their last trip to Texas, defeating Houston 27-6 in December 2015.


According to Oddschecker, the Patriots are three-point favorite and are 17/20 to cover the spread, while the Texans are 3/2 underdogs.

The over/under line in terms of total points scored is set at 34.