Can The Bucs Improve Enough With Lovie To Be A Must Bet On Team?

Can The Bucs Improve Enough With Lovie To Be A Must Bet On Team?

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-12 SU, 6-10 ATS, 8-8 O/U) will enter the 2014 NFL regular season headed in a new direction thanks to the addition of respected head coach Lovie Smith.

How much they’ll improve on the pitiful 4-12 record they compiled in 2013 remains to be seen, but one thing’s for certain…the circus the Buccaneers had become under former head coach Greg Schiano, is now over.

Let’s take a look at Tampa Bay ‘s chances of cashing in on their Super Bowl 49 Futures Odds, before looking at their division prospects and Week 1 regular season opener.

With the start of the annual preseason period set to get underway this coming week, let’s get started.

Betting On the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Win the 2014 Super Bowl

Tampa Bay Buccaneers +5000

Analysis: I like Lovie Smith a lot and I think he’s going to bring about a very positive change for the previously dysfunctional Buccaneers, but the fact of the matter is that this team is a long way from competing for a Super Bowl championship.

The Bucs finished the 2013 season by dropping their last three regular season games while getting outscored 98-44 over the stretch. Again however, I’m expecting the Bucs to be a lot more competitive and a lot better on the defensive side of the ball because of Smith’s hiring.

Tampa Bay ranked dead last (32nd) in passing last season (176.3 ypg), but I expect their passing attack to improve a lot after Chicago foolishly let veteran quarterback Josh McCown leave town even after he far outplayed incumbent starter Jay Cutler last season in just five starts.

The Bucs also ranked a dismal 22nd in rushing, though they were a middle-of-the-pack kind of team on defense, finishing 17th against the pass and 15th against the run.

Save your money if you think the Bucs could cash in as one of those ‘super’ long shots. I know the +5000 return looks great, but the Bucs are quite ready to contend for a Super Bowl just yet.

Betting On the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Win the NFC South

  • Carolina Panthers +100
  • New Orleans Saints +110
  • Atlanta Falcons +275
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers +650

Analysis: The Bucs went 1-5 SU and 2-4 ATS in their six division games last season and they could have an even tougher way to go as I expect two of their three division rivals to be even better this coming season, with only Carolina taking a slight step backwards.

The Buccaneers are just 3-7 SU and 4-6 ATS in their last 10 home games, but with a defense that was already pretty solid – and a very good, but underrated quarterback in McCown, I believe Tampa Bay could at least challenge to stay out of fourth place in the competitive NFC South.

No matter how much I like the new-look Bucs as they get set for the 2014 NFL season, I just don’t see them leap-frogging the Panthers or Saints to take the division crown in 2014.

Even though I think the Bucs are likely to finish last in this division this coming season, I will admit that a quick turnaround and return to respectability could very well take place this coming season. If you can get a wager on what place Tampa Bay will finish in, then a wager for third place – or even second – could pay off.

My Pick:

Betting On the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Win In Week One

  • Carolina -1.5 at Tampa Bay
  • Over/Under 39.5

Analysis: I know the Buccaneers are just 3-7 SU and 4-6 ATS in their last 10 home games against Carolina and that the Panthers won the NFC South last season with a stellar 12-4 record, but I’m going to say the Bucs get the outright home win to start their 2014 NFL regular season off on the right foot while getting an early ATS cover in the process.

The Bucs have won five of their last 10 games as an underdog of two points or less while racking up a solid 5-4-1 ATS mark over the span. Tampa Bay is also 2-0-1 ATS in their last three games as a pup of two points or less.

The Bucs have gone 4-6 SU and ATS in their last 10 games against the Panthers no matter where they play and are a solid 2-2 SU and ATS against the Panthers over their last four meetings, winning both regular season meetings in 2012.

I like the Buccaneers to get the big win here, fueled by their home crowd, a defense I expect to be absolutely ravenous this season and some improved play at quarterback.

The Buccaneers drafted speedy wideout Mike Evans with the seventh overall pick in the NFL Draft to help improve their passing attack and added another player that will see plenty of playing time in 2014 and could potentially start in second round pick Austin Seferian-Jenkins.

My Pick: Tampa Bay Buccaneers +1.5 Points

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Betting Tips

Analysis: The Bucs have covered the spread in three of their last five home games in the month of September while also going 6-4 SU and 5-5 ATS in their last 10 games as a favorite of two points or less.

Tampa Bay is 5-5 SU and 6-4 ATS in their last 10 games against the AFC North and that’s good news seeing as how they will play that division this coming season.

I’m expecting Tampa Bay to get involved in some low-scoring affairs against the Panthers, Ravens, Browns, Bears and Bengals and I believe they could win on the road this coming season at Cleveland and Washington while dropping some dates along the way against the Ravens, Bengals and Packers.

In the end, I like the Bucs to challenge for a possible eight-win season, though it looks a bit more like six wins from where I’m sitting.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Projected 2014 Starters

Offense

Defense

QB

Josh McCown

DE

Michael Johnson

RB

Doug Martin

DT

Gerald McCoy

WR1

Vincent Jackson

DT

Akeem Spence  /  Clinton McDonald

WR2

Mike Evans

DE

William Gholston

TE1

Brandon Myers

MLB

Mason Foster

TE2

Austin Seferian-Jenkins

WLB

Lavonte David

LT

Anthony Collins

CB1

Alterraun Verner

LG

Carl Nicks  /  Oniel Cousins

CB2

Johnthan Banks

C

Evan Dietrich-Smith

SS

Mark Barron

RG

Jamon Meredith  /  Patrick Omameh

FS

Dashon Goldson

RT

Demar Dotson

S

Major Wright

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