Houston Texans (2-4) at Kansas City Chiefs (6-0)
Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET, at Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Mo. - TV: CBS
*TV announcers: Jim Nantz, Phil Simms
*Keys to the game: In desperate need of a "spark" for his fledgling offense, Texans coach Gary Kubiak is going with third-string QB Case Keenum over T.J. Yates in place of injured Matt Shaub. While the former undrafted rookie no doubt relishes the opportunity, Keenum is getting thrown into the fire on the road against a 6-0 team that sports the league's No. 1 scoring defense (10.8 points per game). RBs Arian Foster and Ben Tate will see a steady diet of eight and even nine defenders committed to stopping the run, and K.C. does allow 5.1 yards per carry. The goal is to set up play-action and let Keenum run high percentage passes as Houston is one of the best screen teams in the league. On the flip side, Houston must get an enormous effort from its defense, which is ranked 25th against the run. The Texans are first against the pass, but Chiefs QB Alex Smith isn't easily flustered and runs a very high percentage attack predicated more on steadily moving the ball than big plays.
*Matchup to watch - Texans C Chris Myers vs. Chiefs DT Dontari Poe: Not only does Myers have to work with a new quarterback taking the snaps, he has to give up 60 pounds working against Poe, who possesses freakish athleticism for a 6-3, 346-pound man.
*Player spotlight - Texans QB Case Keenum: Keenum left the University of Houston as the most productive passer in NCAA history with 19,217 passing yards. So why did he go undrafted in 2011? He lacks great arm strength, for starters, and isn't an astounding pure athlete. But he does have good short to intermediate accuracy, makes quick decisions and is a gutty and determined competitor.
*Fast facts: Houston has not allowed more than 284 yards in a game this season. ... The Chiefs have 31 sacks, four more than they registered all last season and an average of one every 8.3 passing plays.
WHO WILL WIN AND WHY
It's a tall task for sure, but don't bury Case Keenum's chances off the bat. He can manage the game - and that's more than turnover-riddled Matt Schaub and T.J. Yates have managed for Houston the past four weeks. But the Chiefs' pass rush will take over if the Texans are forced to play from behind.
*Our pick: Chiefs 19-13