Betting the Bucs is a new segment that focuses on the gambling lines for each Bucs game during the season. We’ll take a look into different aspects of the game to help make your decision on whether to bet for or against the Bucs. We’ll also take a brief view at the slate of Sunday games around the rest of the league.
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The Line: Bucs -4, Over/Under 48
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A lot of people are saying this is going to be a defensive battle and I can’t necessarily blame them. The Bucs have struggled in prime time, the Rams’ defense allowed just 16 points to the Seahawks’ offense a week ago and the Bucs’ defense knows when to batten down the hatches when the going gets tough. I don’t see this as a low scoring game, though, especially for a Bucs team that’s coming off 46 points when they didn’t look their best.
I really like that the line for the over/under is 48 instead of in the 50s. It’s a much more comfortable number considering most of the lines for the Bucs have been at least 50. Sometimes, when everyone is predicting one thing, the exact opposite happens. And it’s not like each team has been complete stalwarts either. Because of the 48-point line, you don’t need a complete shootout.
For how great the Bucs’ defense has been in the second half of games, they’ve come out slow in the first. Over the last three games, Tampa Bay has allowed 14 points to a mediocre Giants team, 31 to the Saints and 17 Carolina last week. That’s a solid start on your way to the over. Then looking at the offense, they’ve scored 46, 25, and 45 in their last three wins. Sure, there was the Saints debacle in there, but that’s looking like an outlier more than anything else. Someone on the Bucs’ offense is going to have a big game whether it’s Mike Evans, Antonio Brown or Chris Godwin. It’s just a matter of which one Jalen Ramsey isn’t guarding.
Each team is 4-6 on the over this season, and the under has hit in five straight for the Rams. What does that mean? Something’s got to change soon. The stat I do like? The over has hit in eight of the Bucs’ last 11 games at home. Should the Rams keep pace in the first half and the Bucs continue to pour it on like they have lately, then we’ll see enough points to reach it.
The Pick: Over 48
I was a Hail Mary from Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins away from going 4-1 last week. The Bills couldn’t stop it, though, and the over hit, so I ended up with a respectable 3-2. I have a 17-11-1 record on the year, so let’s end up with another week of winners.
Patriots -2.5 vs. Texans
The Patriots are coming together as a team with the offense looking a little bit better while the defense shut down a good Ravens’ offense a week ago on Sunday night. They also always dominate the Texans, you can book this one.
Packers +1.5 at Colts, Under 51.5
I think the Colts are a good team, but I’m not sold that they can be good week-in and week-out. Green Bay did not look good against the Jaguars, and every now and then Aaron Rodgers has to show again why he’s one of the best quarterbacks in football. They’ll score, but the Colts won’t make it easy, making the under hit as well.
Chargers-Jets Over 46.5
Los Angeles just keeps scoring and keeps hitting the over. The Jets lost their top corner and also released Pierre Desir. Justin Herbert will sling it everywhere on the field for the Chargers. And with all of the Jets’ receivers healthy, the Jets offense, dare a I say, looked, okay? I can’t believe I actually said that. But the combination of the Chargers moving the ball easily and the Jets putting up points here and there, the over can be reached.