Time: NOON ET, Fox
Spread: NO -10
M/L: NO -550; TB +375
Betting odds c/o Bovada
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers got off to a rough start in the Jameis Winston era, losing 42-14 to the Tennessee Titans as No. 2 overall pick Marcus Mariota got the best of the two studs in their first face-to-face NFL meeting. Winston threw 16 of 33 for 210 yards but had two INTs to match his two TDs, and the Bucs were unable to get much from its backfield.
WR Austin Seferian-Jenkins had a big day for the Bucs with 110 yards on five receptions while scoring both Tampa Bay TDs, but the RBs produced just 74 yards (18 additional came from Winston) on 20 carries. Doug Martin had 52 yards on 11 carries, but the backfield is going to have to give Winston something for the Bucs to succeed. Vincent Jackson caught four passes for 51 yards—but outside of Jackson and Seferian-Jenkins, the Bucs had few others produce.
Winston’s first pass was intercepted and run back for a TD, setting an ominous tone to his NFL career. Winston simply resigned himself by saying “They played the best they can possibly play and we played the worst we can possibly play, we got our worst game out of the way. We can’t look back.” Looking forward may not be too favorable too, as the Bucs are 10-point underdogs to the New Orleans Saints in Week 2.
The Saints, too, began the season with a loss falling 31-19 to the Arizona Cardinals. Drew Brees had a fairly huge game throwing for 355 yards, but he managed just one TD while throwing an INT and the New Orleans backfield did little to feel good about. Mark Ingram and Khiry Robinson rushed in total 17 times but managed just 43 yards and neither rushed for more than 10 yards on a given play.
Ingram was more successful catching the ball, racking up eight receptions for 98 yards including a 59-yard play. Willie Snead and Robinson also caught for 63 and 51 yards, respectively, and the Saints did look good when it aired it out. Balancing the attack will prove crucial, but New Orleans can probably roll past the Bucs even with a heavily pass-reliant attack.
Brees said of the game “We had some opportunities a few times, and we go down the field and kick field goals, not touchdowns.” That frustration could quickly change fates this week given Tampa’s inadequacy of defending the Titans in Week 1. In fact, given the game’s double-digit spread, it could be easily said that the stage is being set for a Tampa Bay disaster again.
Brees is trying to lead the Saints back from a 7-9 season, but Tampa Bay was 2-14 and Brees throwing 30 compete passes looks a lot better than what Winston did in his debut. Expect the Saints to come out and cover this spread.