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Are the Buccaneers a Darkhorse to Win Super Bowl LIV Next February?

The Bucs were not very good in the NFC last season after a solid start to the season, but many think that they will once again be able to make their way back to the top of the list in 2019.

NumberFire today came out with an interesting piece entitled “3 Value Bets to Win Super Bowl LIV,” and along with the Colts and Browns, the Bucs are on the list.

Here’s what they had to say about Tampa and their chances to win the big game next year.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers +6000

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 2018 season was an utter disappointment, as were many of the seasons under then-coach Dirk Koetter. Koetter was shown the door, and fresh out of retirement the Bucs hired offensive guru Bruce Arians. In his first head coaching job, Arians took the Arizona Cardinals to three straight playoffs from 2013 to 2015 and he will look to do so in Tampa in 2019.

Arians was able to resurrect Carson Palmer in Arizona, and will aim to do similar things with Jameis Winston. Winston has struggled with turnovers in his young career (58 interceptions in 56 games). Palmer was very much turnover-prone; before playing for Arians he had a 1.45 touchdown-to-interception ratio, but under Arians that turned into 1.84.

The play on the Buccaneers’ super bowl odds is really just a bet on the talent level and the addition of a proven head coach in Arians. The offense that the Bucs put on the field week in and week out is arguably one of the most skilled and talented groups across the NFL. It just didn’t seem like Koetter was able to get the most of the young talent.

In the past, Arians got a 1,000-yard and 10-touchdown season out of John Brown in 2015, and helped David Johnson have arguably one of the greatest statistical running back seasons (2,118 rushing and receiving yards & 20 touchdowns) in 2016.

One of the biggest questions will be who will play that Johnson role for Tampa? It might be a position they have to address in the offseason because currently the roster lacks a guy who can excel in both the run and pass game out of the backfield.

As for the defense, it actually showed some signs of improvement over the last six games of the 2018 season. Over that span, they allowed opponents to score 22.5 points per game and had 11 takeaways. That is something that they could potentially build off of heading into 2019.

Having finished 2018 with a 5-11 record, the Bucs will be picking fifth in the 2019 NFL draft and should draw a weaker schedule. In terms of the NFC South division, Drew Brees will be another year older and there is plenty of question marks surrounding Cam Newton and his injured shoulder. And as for the Atlanta Falcons, they have been very up and down in the Dan Quinn era, failing to capitalize on the talent of guys like Matt Ryan and Julio Jones.

Look for the Bucs to be rejuvenated heading into next season, and with all of the talent on the offense side of the ball paired with a proven offensive wizard at head coach the 60/1 odds seem like a nice longshot to take a chance on.

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