TAMPA BAY vs. NEW ORLEANS 9/9/2018 NFL Odds, Pick & Preview

The TAMPA BAY and the NEW ORLEANS will both be gunning for a victory on 9/9/2018 at 1:00 PM when they meet in a game matchup.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New Orleans Saints
When: 1:00 PM ET, Sunday, September 9, 2018
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana

ROT TEAM PS OU ML
463 TAMPA BAY -9.5 (-110) 49.5 (-110) 310
-440
464 NEW ORLEANS

TV: 1:00 PM
LINE: -9.5
PREDICTION: NEW ORLEANS , TAMPA BAY

Oddsmakers currently have the NEW ORLEANS listed as -9.5 point favorites versus the TAMPA BAY, while the game’s total is sitting at 49.5.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers hope to improve upon their last-place finish in the NFC South, but they open the season with a tall task as they take to the road to face the defending division champion New Orleans Saints on Sunday. Making matters worse, the Buccaneers will be without quarterback Jameis Winston, who is serving a three-game suspension for violating the league’s personal conduct policy.

Tampa Bay did have the benefit of knowing Winston would be suspended since June, allowing Ryan Fitzpatrick time to prepare to begin the year as the starter. The Saints, of course, will have the same quarterback who has guided one of the league’s most potent offenses for the past 12 seasons in veteran Drew Brees. “He’s one of the best to ever play the game,” Tampa Bay coach Dirk Koetter told reporters. “You know that he’s going to be dialed in to everything you’re doing. … Everybody’s tried to come up with a way to beat Drew Brees for the last however many years, and it’s just easier said than done.” New Orleans will be without running back Mark Ingram, who is suspended for the first four games for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy.

TV: 1 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE: Saints -9.5. O/U: 49.5

ABOUT THE BUCCANEERS (2017: 5-11, 4TH IN NFC SOUTH): Tampa Bay capped a disappointing 2017 season with a win over New Orleans to avoid ending with six straight losses. Winston had a solid campaign, but the team’s ground game was deficient, so it will look to Peyton Barber and rookie Ronald Jones to try to establish the run. The team’s biggest weakness a year ago was the league’s worst pass defense, but the secondary and defensive line have been revamped with the hope they can slow down opposing passers.

ABOUT THE SAINTS (2017: 11-5, 1ST IN NFC SOUTH): New Orleans again boasted one of the league’s best offenses last season, but it was more balanced than in years past with Ingram and Alvin Kamara powering a strong rushing attack. With Ingram suspended to start the year, Brees might be called upon to throw more often in the early going, and he has his favorite target back in Michael Thomas, who had a franchise-record 104 receptions in 2017. The defense was opportunistic last year, forcing 25 turnovers – including five interceptions by rookie cornerback Marshon Lattimore.

EXTRA POINTS

1. Brees ranks third all-time with 70,445 passing yards, trailing only Peyton Manning and Brett Favre.

2. Buccaneers WR Mike Evans is one of three players (Randy Moss and A.J. Green) in NFL history with four consecutive 1,000-yard receiving seasons to begin his career.

3. Kamara recorded 826 yards receiving and 728 rushing last season, joining Charley Taylor (1964) as the only rookies in history with at least 700 yards both rushing and receiving.

PREDICTION: Saints 27, Buccaneers 17

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