NFL Sunday Lineup Offers Plenty of Challenges for Fans and Bettors
The NFL season’s Week 3 action continues on Sunday with another full slate of games. Seven teams are still looking for their first win, which likely means a handful of teams will still be winless heading into Week 4.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers enter Week 3 of the NFL season undefeated. However, they have a few casualties on offense. Receivers Chris Godwin and Julio Jones are injured. Even running back Leonard Fournette was limited in practice this week.
In addition, receiver Mike Evans will not be on the field. He’s out after receiving a one-game suspension from the fight he had with New Orleans Saints defender Marshon Latimore last week.
This is just one of the hot games on Sunday, with oddsmakers giving the Bucs the benefit of the doubt.
Bucs Need Help On Offense
Looking at a full bench of starters incapacitated, the Buccaneers decided to try to fill the hole. They acquired Cole Beasley, who was released by the Buffalo Bills last March and has not been active since.
The receiver’s pleas of “Put me in, coach,” were finally heard, but only for the Bucs practice squad. He could be called up, which would prove that Tampa is desperate for help.
QB Tom Brady has not had a great start for Tampa so far. He only has two touchdown passes and a total of 402 yards, according to ESPN. He has a long way to go if he hopes to beat last season’s 43 TDs.
Still, the Bucs are obviously doing something right. They have control of the NFC South with their 2-0 record.
On the other hand, the Green Bay Packers are fighting for control of the NFC North. All four of the division teams are 1-1, although only the Packers and the Detroit Lions won in Week 2.
Aaron Rodgers and the Packers haven’t beaten the Buccaneers since the 2017 season. The last time they met was in the 2020 season, facing off in the regular season and the playoffs. Brady’s team beat them by scores of 38-10 and 31-26.
The Bucs, as usual, are the favorites with the sportsbooks, but not by much. DraftKings, Caesars and BetMGM have them around -115 or so. However, the Packers are getting around -105, except on Caesars. There, it’s looking at a push.
The spread is just one point on an over/under of 42. The Packers are 2-5 against the spread (ATS) when facing the Bucs. The over has hit in the last five games these two have played. However, with injuries mounting, this could be a low-scoring game.
Tua Silences Critics
In Week 1, the Buffalo Bills (2-0) didn’t have any trouble taking down the L.A. Rams. They then repeated the feat against the Tennessee Titans.
Now, the Miami Dolphins (2-0) could prove difficult, especially after Fins QB Tua Tagovailoa silenced his critics last week. He gave a stellar performance on Sunday in Baltimore, setting career highs for passing yards with 469 and adding six aerial TDs.
He was also responsible for Miami’s comeback after the team was down 35-14 late in the third quarter. Tua helped draft a playbook that led the Fins to a 42-38 victory.
Buffalo has won the last seven games in this matchup. This includes an embarrassing 35-0 beatdown at Miami last year. With Josh Allen at the helm, the Bills are currently in control of the leading offense in the NFL with 36 points per game. The Miami defense may not stop them, but the offense definitely has the strength to give Buffalo’s defense a hard time.
Stefon Diggs is having a good season so far. The wide receiver leads the league with four TD receptions, and has 20 catches and 270 yards to claim second place in both categories. The Dolphins’ secondary is going to have a hard time keeping up.
The bookmakers know it, too. They’re giving the game to the Bills, with DraftKings putting the line at -215. FanDuel has them at -230, and Caesars lists them as -225 favorites. The Fins are getting around +185.
The spread is a respectable 5 points at most books, and the over/under is 52.5. The total has gone over for the Bills in six of their last nine, and 10 of the last 14 between these two. Someone will have to chalk up a loss on Sunday. But it won’t likely be the Bills.
The End of A Goose Egg
After Sunday, either the Las Vegas Raiders or the Titans will keep their goose egg in the win column. The Raiders did their best in their first two games, but it wasn’t enough.
They took a loss against the Chargers in Week 1, followed by an embarrassing loss in Week 2 against the Cardinals. Letting Arizona pick up 16 points in the fourth quarter was a definite crash course with disaster.
The Raiders should tip the scales soon, but their defense will have to get better first. There are five starters on their injury report right now, which could spell trouble on Sunday.
After last year’s performance, the Titans began this season as the favorites to capture the AFC South. However, they quickly plummeted following two disappointing performances.
Considering the Titans’ defensive debacle in Week 1, the Week 2 thrashing was predictable. While the Raiders offense isn’t the same as the Bills’, it will punch through the Titans defense more than once.
The same can be said about the Raiders. Their loss in Week 2 set off alarms. If they play like that again, the Titans could be in a good spot to claim a win on Sunday.
Oddsmakers aren’t ready to call it that way, though. They’re still giving the Raiders more optimism at -130 to the Titans’ +110. However, the spread is only 2 on an over/under of 45.5.
This is could a good spot to back the underdog, as well as the under. For both teams, the under has hit at least five times in seven games.
Take it for what it’s worth. In Week 2, the favorites went 5-9-1 against the spread. In addition, six underdogs won. The over/under was 5-10-1, marking the second consecutive week with mostly unders.
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