Bruce Arians has come out of retirement to take over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which would say to me that he sees something in this roster, that I’m just not seeing right now. Yes, they have a young quarterback, and some very talented wide outs, but I still think they need a lot of work, one on a poor offensive line, and two, on a defence that is going through a major transition under Todd Bowles. Ndamukong Suh was signed in the off-season to help the NFL’s worst pass rush and fill the void left by Gerald McCoy, which has taken another massive blow with the injury to Jason Pierre-Paul. The Bucs are going to need to put a lot of points on the board if they’re even going to stand a chance in a very competitive NFC South.
As for Jameis Winston, its make or break time, entering his 5th season he’s had some nice statistical games, but he’s just far too inconsistent, and turns the ball over far too much. Looking purely at his touchdown value, Winston registered 6 scores in his first season, and has only scored 3 since in 40 starts.
Peyton Barber looks set to start in the backfield for the Bucs, with Ronald Jones II needing to show why he was drafted in the 2nd round last year. Barber only scored 6 times last season, so you will need to see odds over 3/1 which is very unlikely for a starting back. So you may want to avoid the Bucs backfield for a moment.
The same can’t be said for the Bucs receivers, with Mike Evans being a particular favourite of mine having backed the former Aggie 14 times in the last 2 years, for a return of over £250 profit. Having scored 40 times in 77 starts he is usually undervalued by most bookmakers. With Adam Humphries and Desean Jackson no longer in town that means Chris Godwin will have an increased role in the offence, and having scored 7 times last season he may offer great value in this pass first offence. The addition of last season’s 12/1 hero Breshad Perriman may also get more playing time than he has been accustomed to.
Tampa has two very good tight-ends in O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate, while Howard is clearly the better athlete; Brate has provided a nice compliment, especially in the red-zone scoring 23 times in the last 4 seasons. Howard has his season cut short by injury but had racked up an impressive 500 yards and 5 scores prior to that.