The coach and I agree that going for it is the thing to do here, but you may be thinking it makes sense to punt. That would be the right call if you think the Texans’ chances of converting on fourth down are less than 15 percent. But based on my analysis, I’d give the Texans a 30 percent chance to get a first down here.
Here's the full breakdown of my calculations:
Option  Chance of converting 
Chance of winning
Before play

After play  Change  

Go for it4th and 10, own 20  30%  9%  11%  +2%  
Punt  9%  9%    
Field goal tryA really, really long kick  <1%  9%  6%  –3% 
Along with some circuitry to come up with a win probability for every game situation, all you need to figure out what you should do next is an estimate of how likely you are to make a field goal or convert a first down.
My estimates for these are based on the results of thousands of similar plays, but you may think you're smarter than I am. This chart shows you how changing those estimates would change my recommendation.
Based on about 2,753 fourth downs in similar situations since 2001.
Brian Hoyer incomplete pass to the right intended for DeAndre Hopkins defensed by Nickell Robey. Brian Hoyer incomplete pass to the right intended for DeAndre Hopkins defensed by Nickell Robey.
To estimate a team’s chances of winning, I use a mathematical model that accounts for a whole lot of variables — including the difference in score, the time remaining in the game, and the number of timeouts each team has left. On top of that, I have models for the likelihood that a team makes a field goal and the likelihood that it will convert a first down.
By combining all of this information, I can come up with the best decision a team can make, according to math.
If you want even more details about the numbers behind my decisions, my full model is available on GitHub. Help make me better!