Tampa Bay Buccaneers NFL Betting Preview: Tom Brady Chasing More History

Posted on: August 30, 2020, 08:00h. 

Last updated on: August 31, 2020, 08:26h.

No team has ever played a Super Bowl in its home city. Then again, no team has ever acquired a six-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski
Back together: Quarterback Tom Brady (12) and tight end Rob Gronkowski have provided championship hope to the Buccaneers. (Image: Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will host the 55th Super Bowl on Feb. 7. Having signed the legendary Tom Brady during free agency, the Bucs aren’t just a contender to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2007. They’re also a contender to win their first Super Bowl since 2002.

Odds on the Bucs earning the Lombardi Trophy range from +1,200 at William Hill and Westgate SuperBook to +1,600 at BetMGM.

Over/Under: 9.5 Wins

The Buccaneers have just one winning season over the past nine years, haven’t captured the NFC South since 2007, and haven’t won a playoff game since they last won the Super Bowl. But they are a team on the rise behind esteemed coach Bruce Arians and Brady’s off-season additions and his former New England sidekick, tight end Rob Gronkowski.

Thus, while New England’s championship odds sank like a rock, the Buccaneers’ have surged.

Tampa Bay was at 50/1 to win the Super Bowl. In the immediate wake of Brady, they moved to 16/1; they’re now at +1,400,” Andrew Mannino, the senior sports content analyst at PointsBet, told Casino.org.

While the Saints remain the favorite in the NFC South, the Bucs are on their heels. At PointsBet, the Saints are -130 to win the division and the Bucs are +160.

With Brady and Gronk there, people love that,” Mannino continued. “There’s significant liability for us. We have a significant number of bets on them at all levels of futures. Especially with the timing of that and the lull in sports, a lot of bettors got on board that hype train and were excited to put their money down on the Bucs.”

The consensus over/under win total is 9.5; BetMGM is the outlier at 10 wins (+105 on the over and -125 on the under).

Brady vs. Father Time

Incredibly, since taking over at quarterback in New England in 2001, Brady hasn’t posted a losing season. In fact, he’s fallen short of 10 wins just once – in 2002, when he went 9-7, and 2008, when he suffered a season-ending injury in Week 1.

With weapons everywhere, Brady is a consensus +1,600 to win his fourth NFL MVP. There’s less consistency of thought for Comeback Player of the Year, with Gronkowski +550 at PointsBet and FanDuel, but +1,100 at DraftKings.

However, the Bucs’ success isn’t cast in stone. Of course, there’s the question of whether Brady or coach Bill Belichick was the driving force behind the New England dynasty. Moreover, Brady turned 43 on Aug. 3, and his play has declined. He went from a 65.8 percent completion rate and 7.6 yards per attempt in 2018 to 60.8 percent and 6.6 yards in 2019.

He’ll have a much better supporting cast in Tampa Bay, though, with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin at receiver and Gronkowski out of retirement to join Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard as a wicked trio of tight ends.

Last season, Arians managed to coach the Buccaneers to a 7-9 record despite Jameis Winston chucking 30 interceptions. Brady has thrown 29 the past four seasons combined. At PointsBet and FanDuel, Arians and Belichick are tied atop the Coach of the Year board at +1,200.

Editor’s Note: This is the 18th of 32 NFL team previews and the second of four on the NFC South.