Buccaneers (6-8) at Cardinals (4-10)
Opening Spread: Cardinals +4.5
Opening Game Total: 41
Opening Team Totals: Cardinals (18.25) Buccaneers (22.75)
The Line Report
- This line opened as Cardinals +4.5.
- This line has moved all the way up to Cardinals +7.5.
- DraftKings Pick’Em has the Cardinals +6.5.
- Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Cardinals +7.5.
- This total opened at 41 points.
- This total has moved to 41.5 points.
Cardinals: Out: QB Colt McCoy, DL Zach Allen, CB Bryon Murphy; Questionable: WR Marquise Brown, RT Kelvin Beachum
Buccaneers: Out: LT Donovan Smith, DT Vita Vea, CB Jamel Dean; Questionable: WR Julio Jones, RT Tristan Wirfs, S Mike Edwards, S Antoine Winfield Jr.
The Cardinals Offense vs. Buccaneers Defense
The Cardinals’ injury-ravaged offensive line is a bottom-tier unit. The Buccaneers’ injury-reduced front is a below average unit. Given their injuries, Tampa Bay’s defense has just a mild trench advantage in this matchup.
Betting Notes Per TruMedia
- The Cardinals are 6-8 against the spread this season.
- The Cardinals are 8-5-1 on overs this season.
- Kliff Kingsbury is 32-29-2 against the spread in his career as an NFL head coach.
- Kliff Kingsbury is 30-31-2 on overs in his career as an NFL head coach.
- The Cardinals are scoring 20.9 points per game, which is 18th in the league.
- Arizona is 17th in the league in yards passing per game and 20th in yards rushing.
- The Cardinals are passing on 67% of their plays and running on 33% of plays, per Sports Info Solutions.
- Trace McSorley takes over at quarterback for Arizona. McSorley brings some rushing upside to the table, but he’s a limited passer.
- Per the Edge, James Conner has 14 or more carries and three or more targets in each of his last five games. Conner has at least 60 yards rushing in four of those five contests.
- DeAndre Hopkins is fourth in the league in target share (30.1%) and fifth in air yards share (41.6%). Hopkins has double-digit targets in four of his last five games and in six of his eight games this season.
- Marquise “Hollywood” Brown has a 25% target share and a 40% air yards share. Brown has eight targets in all three of his games since returning from injury.
- Since Zach Ertz’s injury, Trey McBride has a 12.3% target share and a 9.9% air yards share.
- The Buccaneers have allowed 20.6 points per game, which is tenth in the league.
- Per The Edge, the Buccaneers have allowed the 15th-most yards rushing per game and the second-fewest yards receiving per game to running backs this season.
- Tampa Bay has given up the 24th-most yards receiving per game to wide receivers this year.
- The Buccaneers have allowed the 14th-most yards receiving per game to tight ends this season.
- The Buccaneers have allowed the fourth-most PPR points per game to tight ends lined up in the slot.
The Buccaneers Offense vs. Cardinals Defense
With left tackle Donovan Smith sidelined, the Buccaneers’ offensive line is a slightly below average unit. The Cardinals’ defensive front has improved as the season has gone on, where I now have them towards the back of league average. This trench matchup is a relative draw.
Betting Notes Per TruMedia
- The Buccaneers are 3-10-1 against the spread this season.
- The Buccaneers are 4-10 on overs this season.
- Tom Brady is 187-131-12 against the spread in his career.
- Tom Brady is 170-158-2 on overs in his career.
- Todd Bowles is 35-41-5 against the spread in his career as an NFL head coach.
- Todd Bowles is 39-42 on overs in his career as an NFL head coach.
- The Buccaneers are scoring 17.6 points per game, which is 28th in the league.
- Tampa Bay is sixth in the league in yards passing per game and last in yards rushing.
- The Buccaneers are passing on 69% of their plays and running on 31% of plays, per Sports Info Solutions.
- Per the Edge, over their last three games, Leonard Fournette has 24 carries and 18 targets while Rachaad White has 33 carries and 15 targets.
- Chris Godwin has a 21.9% target share and an 18% air yards share. Godwin has eight or more targets in each of his last nine games.
- Mike Evans has a 19.3% target share with a 35.9% air yards share. Evans has breached 100 yards receiving just twice this season.
- Russell Gage is coming off a 12-target usage spike last week against the Bengals. Gage had 12 targets total over his previous four games.
- When both Cameron Brate and Cade Otton are active, they are in a relative timeshare where both players have volatile usage.
- The Cardinals have allowed 26.6 points per game, which is last in the league.
- Per The Edge, the Cardinals have allowed the 17th-most yards rushing per game and the eighth-most yards receiving per game to running backs this season.
- Arizona has given up the 25th-most yards receiving per game to wide receivers this year.
- The Cardinals have allowed the most yards receiving per game to tight ends this season.
- The Cardinals have allowed the second-most PPR points per game to in-line tight ends and the most to those lined up in the slot.
This Is What You’re Betting on in Cardinals vs. Buccaneers
The Cardinals have one of the league’s best wide receiver duos in DeAndre Hopkins and Marquise “Hollywood” Brown. On top of that, the Buccaneers will still be without several key defenders. That’s where the good news ends for the Cardinals offense, as third-string quarterback Trace McSorley takes over behind an offensive line that is down three opening day starters. If you’re betting on the Cardinals, you are betting on McSorley against a Buccaneers team that needs to stack wins to make the playoffs. If you’re an Arizona bettor you also have to contend with Tom Brady’s offense, which is coming off their best performance in weeks. While that resulted in 23 Tampa Bay points in a losing effort against the Bengals, the Buccaneers have enough talent on offense to at least match that number against the Cardinals this week. I’d suggest that a bet on Arizona is more of a bet against struggling Tampa Bay than a bet on the current Cardinals’ roster.
Tom Brady’s offense has performed way below expectations this season, as they are scoring the fifth-fewest points in the league. That said, the Buccaneers’ offense got off to a strong start against the Bengals last week, posting 23 points in a losing effort. If you’re betting on the Buccaneers, you are betting on Brady’s offense at least matching that figure against a below average Cardinals defense. Tampa Bay has the raw materials on offense to achieve that expectation. Tampa Bay is still down a few of their best players on defense, which makes this exceptional matchup against third-string quarterback Trace McSorley less appealing than it would be if the Bucs were at full strength. Still, we can reasonably expect Todd Bowles’ defense to send pressure against a volatile quarterback. If you’re betting on the Bucs, you are primarily betting against McSorley. Motivation is also in question for the 4-10 Cardinals, especially considering their injuries and current quarterback situation. Your primary concern as a Bucs bettor is that their offense continues to underwhelm while the Cardinals piece together a couple of scoring drives against the Bucs’ injury-reduced defense. A 16-10 or 20-14 type of Bucs’ victory would be a cover for Cardinals bettors.
Awards Market Ramifications: None.
Winner/Confidence Pool: I will take the Buccaneers across the board in winner pools. I expect to be right in line with consensus on this contest in confidence pools.
Spread Pool: The Buccaneers injury report has me less enthused about betting on this game against the spread than I was earlier this week. Still, I will take the Bucs or pass here.
Survivor Pool: The Bucs are a strong option in survivor pools, but they are an injury-reduced roster in a number of areas, which dampens my enthusiasm some.
Ryan’s recent betting record:
ATS 2021: 49-31
ATS 2022: 46-24
Props 2022: 51-31