Super Bowl 55 Betting: Buccaneers Come to Big Game Well-Rounded
It would seem to be the quarterback duel with the right kind of storyline. When you can put the new kid on the block against the old pro, you’ve really got something.
And that is why we’re expecting tremendous interest in the matchup between Patrick Mahomes and Tom Brady. And Brady’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers are playing at home against the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.
Super Bowl 55 kicks off at 6:30 PM ET at Raymond James Stadium. In the betting odds that have been established at BetOnline, the Chiefs are the favorites, in effect, on the road:
Super Bowl LV Odds by BetOnline
|Chiefs||-3 (-105)||56 (EV)||-165|
|Buccaneers||+3 (-105)||56 (-110)||+144|
A look at this game from the Bucs’ perspective
The Bucs are ranked sixth in defense and seventh in offense. And behind Brady they were second in the NFL in passing yards. But the Buccaneers have been pretty permissive in terms of passing yards on the defensive side. But interestingly enough, the team allowed just 5.9 net yards per attempt.
And Todd Bowles’ stop unit did a pretty damn good job preventing explosive plays. So what are explosive plays? Those running plays that go for ten yards, and pass plays for 20 or more. Tampa Bay is eighth in the NFL preventing explosive run plays and fourth against explosive pass plays.
The Bucs have actually had to gain only 12.5 yards for every point they’ve scored, which is a lower figure than the Chiefs’ 14.1. And there is another metric called “points per play” in which they have the statistical edge (.479 to .450).
The Bucs – how much offensive momentum do they have?
Tampa Bay has scored at least 30 points in six straight games, averaging 35.7 points over that stretch. And when you look at their playoff performances, the results, you’d have to say, are mixed.
On the one hand, they gained 507 yards against Washington, which had one of the league’s three best defenses. They did not stand out so much in the other two against the Saints and Packers, however. The Bucs had 316 and 351 yards in those games. But they also kept things very much under control on the defensive end, allowing 294 (New Orleans) and 381 (Green Bay).
Tom Brady completed 65.7% of his passes in the regular season. But in the three playoff games combined, he had only 55% completions. And of course, in the NFC Championship game at Lambeau Field, he threw three interceptions.
The Bucs – Can they win the battle at the line of scrimmage?
There is no question that if the Bucs are going to win this game, they’ll have to hit big with their defensive front. There’s a chance they could dominate. The Chiefs are working with an offensive line with three players missing who had been projected starters before camp. Most recently, they suffered the loss of Eric Fisher, who is gone with an Achilles injury.
So it’s a patchwork unit, and we could be charitable in saying that. The Bucs have standouts up front.Jason Pierre-Paul has revived his career. Ndamukong Suh is still a formidable force. Shaq Barrett is an established star. And Vita Vea, the big nose tackle, has come back from his broken ankle.
The Bucs’ defensive line ranks first in the NFL in the metric of “Adjusted Line Yards.” And they are second in “Stuff Rate,” which means that they are good at stopping runs without them crossing the line of scrimmage. Tampa Bay allows just 3.6 yards a carry, which is the best figure in the league. They are also sixth in “Adjusted Sack Rate,” so they can get pressure on the passer.
If they can get sufficient pressure on Patrick Mahomes rushing just four people, they can get a “leg up.”
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