Buccaneers Sailing Full-Speed Ahead
The Buccaneers have won seven straight games, and five-out-of-seven of these wins came on the road. The previous three road victories occurred in consecutive playoff games against Washington, New Orleans, and Green Bay. Tampa Bay was rated as the underdog in the last two contests, but found a way to emerge victorious.
Now that destiny has Brady and the Bucs finally playing a home playoff game, they’re being disrespected with a +3½ . The last time Brady was a Super Bowl underdog was in his first ever title game appearance vs the Rams. That was in 2002, and this sports writer made a pretty penny on the Patriots and that ridiculous 14-point spread.
Revenge for Week 12 Loss
It should be mentioned that Tampa Bay’s last loss came against Kansas City in Week 12. Super Bowl LV is less than two weeks away, and NFL betting approaches its final frame. The American Gaming Association projects a record $6.8 billion to be wagered by approximately 26 million Americans on Feb 7. Legal online sports betting sites like BetUS have made it possible for almost everyone to get in on the action.
The most recent NFL odds on our sportsbook show the Buccaneers as 3 ½ -point home-dogs vs the defending champion Chiefs. If the line holds, Tom Brady is a Super Bowl underdog for just the second time in his illustrious career. This article explores the feasibility of Tampa Bay covering ATS, and the possibility of the Bucs dethroning the Chiefs entirely.
Brady’s “150th” Super Bowl
Last year’s Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes is quoted as saying, “Being able to go up against one of the greatest, if not the greatest quarterback of all time, in his 150th Super Bowl, it’s going to be a great experience for me.” The Chiefs’ signal caller jests, but Mahomes is only trying to add levity to an increasingly tense title game matchup.
It is Brady’s 10th Super Bowl appearance, and “California Cool” has already won six rings. Brady was named the game’s MVP on four of those six winning occasions, and is clearly a living legend. Now the bookmakers have given the GOAT some Belichickian motivation, by tabbing Tampa Bay as underdogs in their own building.
Raymond James Stadium during Week 12. The Buccaneers trailed 27-10 heading into the fourth quarter, and that proved to be too deep of a hole. Tampa scored 14 fourth-quarter points in a furious comeback attempt, but fell short, losing 27-24.
You can be certain that Brady has watched the footage from that game at least 100 times by now. Brady completed 27-of-41 passes for 345 yards and three touchdowns, but also threw two costly interceptions. Bucs’ TE Rob Gronkowski recorded season-highs in both receptions (6) and yardage (106) during this battle.
We can expect Gronkowski to be heavily involved again in the title game, as two gridiron war veterans reclaim glory. Tampa WR Antonio Brown (knee) is expected to be fully healed by Feb 7, and Brady should have a complete arsenal at his disposal. RB Leonard Fournette is playing with wild energy, and the Fournette-Jones II tandem will succeed vs K.C. where Buffalo couldn’t.
Ground Game + D + GOAT= WIN
The Buccaneers will establish a formidable ground game from which Brady can exploit the Chiefs’ shifting defensive schematics. Let’s not forget about Tampa’s rock solid defense, and all of the individual skill players on that unit. Veteran LBs Shaquil Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul combined for five sacks of Aaron Rodgers in the NFC Championship game win.
Barrett and Pierre-Paul were fired up, and will lead the defensive charge on the Chiefs with players like Lavonte David, Devin White, and Ndamukong Suh charging alongside. Rookie playmaking safety Antoine Winfield should also be back in action for Tampa Bay when they kickoff against the Chiefs.
The Buccaneers own the eighth-ranked defense overall this season, and boast the #1 run-stop unit in the league. Tampa’s defense is scary talented. So is the Bucs’ offense, which is led by the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL. Now this loaded team has been labeled the underdog in the biggest home game in franchise history.
There is no way I would ever suggest betting against Brady and the Buccaneers in this spot. The previous four Wild Card teams to reach the Super Bowl have won it (2000 Ravens, 2005 Steelers, 2007 Giants, and 2010 Packers), and the Buccaneers will keep that streak alive. Tampa wins its first Super Bowl since 2002-03, so make sure to bet both the point spread and the moneyline.
Free NFL Pick ATS: Tampa Bay Buccaneers +3 ½
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