Best bet for week 17: Capping the wild ride that was the 2019 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Friday, 27 December 2019 19:49 EST

From purely a football’s fans perspective, the 2019 Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been right up there with the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers as the NFL’s most exciting teams: No other team is top-3 in points scored and points allowed. From the NFL bettor’s perspective, the Bucs have been unpredictable as their ultra-mercurial QB Jameis Winston himself – but that 15-game tendency might just prove lucrative in week 17 betting.

NFLbets’ Best Bet for week 17, then, involves:

Atlanta Falcons “pick ‘em” at Tampa Bay

That points scored/points allowed stat cited above is just scratching the surface of insane outlier trends surrounding this team in ’19. How about a ranking of dead last in pass attempts allowed and second in pass attempts? And sure, you probably guessed that gunslinging Winston leads the NFL in interceptions, but he’s also tops in passing yardage, no. 3 in passing TDs and no. 6 in yards per attempt. And between the turnovers and well below average special teams play, Tampa Bay gives opponents the second-best average drive-starting spot.

Even more fun, both teams, long since virtually eliminated from playoff contention, are finally heating up. Tampa Bay is on a 4-1 SU (3-0-2 ATS) run, while Atlanta are on a 5-2 SU/ATS run, with three consecutive SU/ATS wins after a 1-point ATS loss to New Orleans in week 14.

Like scoring? The over is an incredible 11-1 in Tampa Bay games; though Atlanta’s scores aren’t quite as impressive, the over is 3-2 in the last five Falcons games and they’re averaging over 27 points per game in the second half of the season. That 11-1 is way too much of an outlier for NFLbets to back the over again – we don’t care how scoreboard-spinning these two teams are.

No, we’re banking instead against another trend even more insane than Tampa Bay’s over/under marks. Namely: The Buccaneers are *winless ATS for the season*. Despite a 3-4 SU mark in Tampa Bay, the Bucs are a wacky 0-5-2 ATS. On this basis alone, we’re ready to recommend that NFL bettors take the Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Atlanta, but placing money on the homers will make an already exciting game even more engaging. Thanks for the (gambling) memories, Buccaneers!

NFLbets’ Best Bets last week: 0-1.
NFLbets’ Best Bets this season: 17-14.

–written by Os Davis

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