Tampa Bay Buccaneers(0-5SU,1-4ATS) vsAtlanta Falcons(1-4SU,1-4ATS)
Date and Time:/October 20, 1:00 PM E
byJeffHochman,Pro Handicapper, JHSportsline.com
Before the season started I looked at thismatchupas a possible game to decide first place in the NFC South. That couldn’t be further from the truth as both the Tampa BayBuccaneersand Atlanta Falcons aredealing with numerouskeyinjuriesand sit a combined 1-9 so far this season. Tampa Bay lost 31-20 as 2.5-point home dogsagainstthe Philadelphia Eagles last week. TheBucswereoutgainedby 74 yards and lookedcompletelylost on defense. Tampa Bay is 0-5 ITS (in the stats) and have beenoutgainedin 9straightgames dating back to last season. Something isseriouslywrong in Tampa Bay right now. The Atlanta Falcons lost itsthirdstraight game, 30-28 as 10-point home chalk to the Jetson 10/7/13. The Falconsoutgainedthe Jets by 75 yards and have actuallyoutgainedtheir opponent in the three consecutive losses. Atlanta is 3-2 ITS this season. They will be without Steven Jackson,Julio Jones, and Roddy White just to name a few. Tampa Bay will be without one of the best Guards in all of football as Carl Nicks is outindefinitely.
This is a tough game to handicap considering all theinjuriesfor both teams. There are 23 players listed on the injury report combined TheBucsown a slight edge on defense but their offense is one of the worst. Yes, MikeGlennonhas looked better but the offensive line has struggled in pass protection and run blocking. Doug Martin has rushed for 409 yards in 5 games, averaging 3.5 yards per carry. Martin has only found theend-zoneonce so far this season, afteraccumulating11 touchdowns in 2012. I really don’t think the players and coaches are on the same page in Tampa. TheBucslook like they want the No. 1 pick next Spring. I don’t want any part of them right now.
Although the Falcons team has been decimated with injuries, they will have a great chance to start the second half of their season on the right foot.I think the BYE Week will help the Falcons against thisBucsteam. Matt Ryan is 15-1SUand 11-5 ATS in home games off a loss. Head CoachMike Smith is 13-4SUand 16-1 ATS in his career in games off a loss of 6 or more points. That shows me a guy that knows how to motivate his players. The Falcons should focus on re-establishing their ground attack to helpassitthe passing game. Tampa’s new and improved defense allowed NickFolesto end up with four total touchdowns, with three through the air and one with his legs. Matt Ryan will look for Tony Gonzalez early and often as theBucsrank dead last in defending opposing teams tight ends. Look for a big day from Matt Ryan passing down the middle of the field.
These two teams split the season series last year with each team winning on the road as underdogs. Both games went Under the total. The Under is 8-2 in the last 10 head-to-headmeetings. TheBucsare 8-3-1 ATS in their last 12 meetings. The Falcons are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games in Week 7.
Jeff’sPick to Cover the Point Spread: Atlanta Falcons -7
Don’t really like the game. I will lean with the home team coming off their BYE week.