All of the quarterback injury talk is centered in Green Bay, but the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could be without their starter after Jameis Winston sustained a shoulder injury during the Bucs loss to Arizona. It didn’t affect the team last week with Winston leaving in a 21-0 hole and backup Ryan Fitzpatrick leading a late charge, but this is Winston’s team and as we’ve seen with Fitz, he just isn’t capable of being a starter for any length of time in the NFL any longer.
The Bucs will make a decision on who starts their Week 7 tilt in Buffalo later in the week, but for the sake of the team’s chances, they better hope Winston is able to play. He was just 5 of 10 passing for 61 yards before leaving last game and the team trailed 31-0 before Fitzpatrick rallied the troops. The offense is built for Winston and he’s the unquestioned leader. The comeback last week had more to do with being thoroughly embarrassed and trying to save face rather than Fitz nearly pulling out a miracle.
Tampa Bay also needs its defense to wake up. They were hammered in the first half giving up touchdown drives on Arizona’s first three possessions and surrendering over 300 yards. The entire unit took a giant step backward and it doesn’t matter who’s quarterbacking the team if the unit can’t do a better job of stopping teams. Lavonte David did provide a spark in the second half, contributing to the comeback attempt by forcing a fumble and returning it for a score. But it wasn’t nearly enough from a group that’s much better than what it showed.
2017 Record: 2-3
2017 ATS Record: 1-4
2017 Over/Under Total Record: 3-2
Current Super Bowl Odds: +5000
Current Odds to Win NFC: +2200
Current Odds to Win NFC South: +900
Current NFL Odds: Check Back Later
Over/Under Total: Check Back Later
Buccaneers vs. Bills NFL Preview: Check Back Later
Week 6: Cardinals 38, Buccaneers 33
ATS Result: Cardinals +2.5
Over/Under Total Result: Over 46.5
The final score was closer than the game actually was and the Bucs lost their fourth straight ATS. Tampa couldn’t stop the Cards, falling into a deep hole early by allowing Arizona to score on its first three possessions. Adding injury to insult, Winston left the game with a shoulder injury and didn’t return. Fitzpatrick tried valiantly to rally the troops and they easily cashed the over, but it wasn’t enough.
Week 5: Patriots 19, Buccaneers 14
ATS Result: Patriots -3.5
Over/Under Total Result: Under 54.5
If Folk made one field goal the Bucs would’ve covered. If he made two they would’ve won the game. That’s how close the Bucs came to knocking off the defending champs. But they didn’t and it was a frustrating loss for a team that looked to have its offense in gear. Winston put up good numbers throwing for 334 yards, but the blown chances were too much and cost Folk his job.
Week 4: Buccaneers 25, Giants 23
ATS Result: Giants +2.5
Over/Under Total Result: Over 45.5
Winston calmly led the Bucs on their game-winning field goal drive by completing all five of his passes and collecting seven yards on a run. It was a masterful job after the Giants took the lead and failed on the two-point conversion, leaving the door open for Nick Folk to bang home a 34-yard field goal. The Bucs failed to cover for second straight game, but they did cash the over.
Week 3: Vikings 34, Buccaneers 17
ATS Result: Vikings PK
Over/Under Total Result: Over 41
The offense was little help in this one, committing three turnovers, converting just one third-down chance and possessing the football for only 22 minutes. A depleted defense wilted under the onslaught and allowed a backup to look like an All-Pro. The Bucs fell behind early and never caught up in a decisive loss that was a toss-up. Winston’s second touchdown pass benefitted over bettors, though.
Week 2: Buccaneers 29, Bears 7
ATS Result: Buccaneers -7
Over/Under Total Result: Under 44
The Bears gave it and the Bucs took it. Tampa Bay scored three times following a takeaway to build a big first half lead and never let Chicago into the game, easily covering the 7.5-point spread. Things calmed down in an uneventful second half, leaving the teams shy of the closing total.
Week 1: BYE
Preseason Record: 1-3
ATS Record: 1-3
Over/Under Total Record: 0-4
The young Bucs were inconsistent last season losing games to a bad Rams team and to sub-.500 clubs Arizona and New Orleans. The Bucs also dropped games to teams that were in the same boat as they were. All in all it was a good season and getting so close to reaching the playoffs has left the group hungry to finally get there.
Week 1: at Miami Dolphins, Sunday, September 10, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 2: vs. Chicago Bears, Sunday, September 17, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 3: at Minnesota Vikings, Sunday, September 24, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 4: vs. New York Giants, Sunday, October 1, 4:05 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 5: vs. New England Patriots, Thursday, October 5, 8:25 p.m. ET (CBS)
Week 6: at Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, October 15, 4:05 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 7: at Buffalo Bills, Sunday, October 22, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 8: vs. Carolina Panthers, Sunday, October 29, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 9: at New Orleans Saints, Sunday, November 5, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 10: vs. New York Jets, Sunday, November 12, 1 p.m. ET (CBS)
Week 11: BYE Week
Week 12: at Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, November 26, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 13: at Green Bay Packers, Sunday, December 3, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 14: vs. Detroit Lions, Sunday, December 10, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 15: vs. Atlanta Falcons, Monday, December 18, 8:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Week 16: at Carolina Panthers, Sunday, December 24, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Week 17: vs. New Orleans Saints, Sunday, December 31, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
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