Kansas City Chiefs (1-4 SU, 2-3 ATS) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-3 SU, 3-1 ATS)
NFL Week 5
Date/Time: 1:00 PM ET, October 14, 2012
Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, FL
by Jason Green, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: KC +3.5/TB -3.5
Over/Under Total: 40
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The Kansas City Chiefs have lost their last 2 games and there is trouble in Kansas City, as starter Matt Cassel is questionable and the team is mad at their fans for cheering when he was injured. Things are not much better for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as the Bucs have lost 3 straight after winning their season opener and they have one of the weakest offenses in the league.
In their last games the Chiefs lost to the Baltimore Ravens 9-6 in a defensive battle and while the Bucs had a bye last week they lost to the Washington Redskins 24-22 a couple of weeks back.
With Cassel a big question mark for this game Brady Quinn will likely get the start and for the season he is 3/3 for 32 yards. Kansas City’s pass offense has struggled behind Cassel this season and how will they do with Quinn? KC does have legit WR Dwayne Bowe and I think Quinn will have a good game, as he will be facing a Tampa Bay pass defense that ranks dead last in the league.
Another reason I think Quinn will have a good game if that the Tampa Bay pass rush only ranks 24th in the league in sacks so he will have time in the pocket. Plus I think he will take advantage of this start and show he should be the QB for the Chiefs, as Cassel simply has not got the job done.
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One bright spot for the Chiefs this season has been the play of RB Jamaal Charles, who leads the league in rushing yards and he rushed for 140 yards in the loss to the Ravens. Look for Charles to get a lot of carries in this game and even though the Bucs have a good run defense, ranking 4th in the league, Charles will have a good game and rush for over 100 yards for his 2nd straight game.
Josh Freeman has not played very well this season and in his last 4 games he has 4 TD, but 4 INT. He did pass for nearly 300 yards in the loss to Washington in the Bucs’ last game, but the Redskins have one of the league’s worst pass defenses. The same cannot be said about the Chiefs’ pass D that ranks 8th in the league and shut down Joe Flacco last week holding him to 187 passing yards with 0 TD and 1 INT. Freeman will have a decent game, but not a great, one since he will have to air it out since Tampa Bay has struggled to run the ball.
Tampa Bay only ranks 23rd in the league in rushing offense and their first round draft pick of Doug Martin is the team’s leading rusher. He only has 247 yards on the ground in 4 games this season and he has averaging a less than impressive 3.5 yards per carry. He has not had a 100+ yard rushing game so far in his career and that will continue after this game. Rumors out of TB are that LeGarrette Blount’s role will increase. KC only ranks 22nd in the league in run defense and they will keep Martin in check.
The Chiefs coughed up the ball 4 times last week (2 INT 2 fumbles) and they will hold onto the rock in this game even though Tampa Bay has a turnover differential of +3.
In looking at some betting trends for this non-conference match up Kansas City has only covered the spread in 1 of their last 5 games after an ATS and in their last 7 games on the road the total has gone Under. A key betting trend in the fact that Tampa Bay is 7-22 in their last 29 home games.
Jason’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Even at 1-4 I don’t think the Chiefs are that bad and I think they will start to play well with Quinn under center. On the other side of the coin, the Bucs are led by an inconsist QB and a defense that resembles a wet paper bag. I’m betting the underdog Chiefs, plus the 3.5 points!
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