SNF Pick: Buccaneers vs. Raiders Pick 10/25/20
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-2 SU, 3-3 ATS) vs. Las Vegas Raiders (3-2 SU, 3-2 ATS)
Week 7 NFL
Date/Time: Sunday Night Football, October 25, 2020 at 8:20PM EDT
Where: Allegiant Stadium, Las Vegas, Nevada
Point Spread: TB -3/LV +3 (GTBets - 100% Bonus from $100 to $500!!!)
Over/Under Total: 53.5
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers come into Allegiant Stadium to face the Las Vegas Raiders in a key Week 7 matchup. Tampa had a crazy game against Green Bay last week, falling behind 10-0 and looking lost against the Packers on Sunday, before the defense helped turn things around in a big way, with the Bucs winning 38-10. It helped put a rough one-point loss the previous week to Chicago behind them, as they now take to the road again in the City of Sin. The Raiders got a week off leading up to this, which is a big spot as they sit at 3-2. They came into the bye with some momentum after going into Arrowhead and beating the Chiefs, 40-32, in their last game. Who can get it done this week in Vegas?
Are Raiders in a Groove?
It’s too early to tell, but doing what they did to the Chiefs on the road, considering what the Chiefs did to them last season, was a big step in the right direction. The game was a microcosm of what the Raiders were hoping to see this season. Derek Carr put up 347 yards and three touchdowns. Running back, Joshua Jacobs ran for two touchdowns. Tight end stud Darren Waller caught a TD pass, and Nelson Agholor continues to deliver in the clutch, also hauling in a score. But most promising was to see Carr start to click with high draft pick Henry Ruggs, III. as the speedster and Carr connected on two long balls, including a highlight-reel 72-yard TD strike. On defense, we saw one of the new additions in Jeff Heath pick off a ball and make a long return, while the pass-rush was able to make an impact.
But then there is the bottom-end of that range with the Raiders and what we saw in the two games leading up to their upset win over KC. Against the Patriots and Bills, we saw an offense that wasn’t able to establish any continuity. We saw a Raiders’ defensive line and secondary that is clearly still in the developmental stages. We saw the combination of some injuries and perhaps some unwise draft picks resonating on the defensive side of the ball, where several years of high draft picks have yet to yield a real difference-maker on this side of the ball. Against teams like Tampa, those things tend to come to light.
Tampa: Many Routes to Victory
So far this season, we’ve seen the Bucs get to the winner’s circle in a number of ways. Against Carolina, they actually ran the ball well, with the “D” chipping in with some takeaways. Against the Broncos and Chargers, we saw Tom Brady take to the air with devastating effect. And against Green Bay, everything was going badly until Jamel Dean took back an Aaron Rodgers pass for a TD and everything flipped. On the next series, Mike Edwards almost took another pick back, and the Bucs were off and running. Lavonte David was all over the field, as he and Jason Pierre-Paul both had 1.5 sacks, with Ndamukong Suh and Devin White also getting to Rodgers.
On Sunday, Brady continued connecting better with Rob Gronkowski, who went for 78 yards and a TD. His continued production would really help, especially with OJ Howard, out of action. The return of Chris Godwin was big and will be bigger moving forward as he gets back from an injury. With Leonard Fournette out, the blossoming of Ronald Jones, II. will be huge, and he looked great on Sunday with 113 yards and two TDs, key in keeping Green Bay from being able to get back in the game. Rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn added a handful of nice runs. It’s at least possible that we start to see a Tampa offense that is at closer to full-power start to click even more.
Problems for Las Vegas
Gruden might recognize some familiar traits from when he was the head coach of Tampa, namely a stout and impactful defense, one that was on full display on Sunday. They put an expression on Aaron Rodgers’ face that hadn’t been seen in quite some time, as the Packers’ star looked absolutely flummoxed. That front is a lot of trouble with Suh anchoring the line, with pass-rushers like David, Paul, White, and others around him. That middle is strong with last year’s sack-leader Shaquil Barrett also in the fold. The secondary has been outstanding and is a big part of this defense’s playmaking element, having registered eight picks already.
That’s a lot for the Raiders’ offense to overcome. One aspect of their game that could help is a blossoming offensive line that has been one of the better ones in the AFC so far this season. And it also helps to have so many pieces on offense that can do damage. Carr has 11 TDs against one pick. Jacobs is warming up after a rough start, with Devontae Booker adding a nice dimension to their run game. Maybe they get Bryan Edwards (questionable) back, giving them another option in a deep toolbox of viable targets for Carr.
Take the Bucs
Coming off three games that were all draining in their own way, this might not be an ideal spot for Tampa making the long road trip out of their conference. The Raiders are rested and accustomed to the challenges of Las Vegas—the heat and the drastic decrease in humidity from places like Florida. I just think that with Brady getting Godwin back, Jones, II. running the ball so well, and their other weapons that they’re not that much less-explosive than the Raiders. And with that Tampa defense being so much more-bankable, I’m not sure this merely being a good spot on paper for the Raiders trumps everything else. I’m going with the Bucs in this one.
Loot’s Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I’m betting on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers minus 3 points. Have you ever tried Bovada Sportsbook? They have the best live betting platform on the planet, they offer a 50% real cash bonus up to $250 free, you receive rebates on ALL your action win, lose or draw) and they have fast payouts! If you’re tired of your book or you’re not getting any benefits like rebates and killer live betting, consider making the change to Bovada! You’ll be glad you did!
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