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Handicapping Buccaneers (7.5)
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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have not made the playoffs in more than a decade and based on their season win total for 2018 that drought is not likely to end. Oddsmakers put the win total for the Bucs at 7.5 for the 2018 season.

Tampa will have to win early in the season without quarterback Jameis Winston, as he is suspended for the first three games. Let’s look at the Tampa Bay schedule for this season to see if they will go over or under their win total.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2018 Regular Season Win Total - per [...]
Over 7.5 (-130)
Under 7.5 (+100)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2018 Schedule Analysis

Week 1: Sunday, Sept. 10, at New Orleans Saints

The Bucs have not played well at New Orleans through the years, as they are 11-18 all-time in New Orleans. It is hard to see them winning this one with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback.

Week 2: Sunday, Sept. 16, vs. Philadelphia Eagles

The Bucs home opener is no bargain, as they face the defending Super Bowl champs. Tampa has been a disaster against reigning Super Bowl champs, as they are 4-17 all-time. The Eagles are 9-6 in September road games since 2016 and they should improve that record here.

Week 3: Monday, Sept. 24, vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

There is a good chance that the Bucs will start the season 0-3, as they host the Steelers in Week 3. The Bucs don’t have the defense to slow down the Steelers in this one.

Week 4: Sunday, Sept. 30, at Chicago Bears

This game is the easiest of the first four, but the Bucs will still be underdogs, as the Bears are expected to be improved. It is hard to see the Bucs getting their first win of 2018 in Chicago, as Tampa is 6-21 all-time in Chicago.

Week 5: BYE

Week 6: Sunday, Oct. 14, at Atlanta Falcons

When will the first win for the Bucs come in 2018? It probably won’t happen here, as the Falcons are the better team and at home.

Week 7: Sunday, Oct. 21, vs. Cleveland Browns

If there is a game that the Bucs should win it is this one. They are 2-0 at home against the Browns since 2002.

Week 8: Sunday, Oct. 28, at Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals are normally a tough home team, but the Bucs should have a chance to be competitive in this one and stretch their winning streak to two.

Week 9: Sunday, Nov. 4, at Carolina Panthers

The Panthers are 6-1 at home in the month of November since 2015. The Panthers defense has owned Winston and this looks like a road loss for Tampa.

Week 10: Sunday, Nov. 11, vs. Washington Redskins

The Redskins have a new quarterback in Alex Smith and Washington should be improved this season. This game looks like a toss-up.

Week 11: Sunday, Nov. 18, at New York Giants

The Giants are expected to be much better this season with a vastly improved offense. The Bucs could be facing yet another road defeat.

Week 12: Sunday, Nov. 25, vs. San Francisco 49ers

The Bucs know Kyle Shanahan’s offense well, as he was with the Falcons, but that doesn’t mean they can stop it. This could turn into a shootout between Jimmy Garoppolo and Jameis Winston.

Week 13: Sunday, Dec. 2, vs. Carolina Panthers

The Bucs should have a chance to win this one, as the Panthers are not nearly as good on the road late in the season. They are 6-5 in their last 11 road games in December compared to 10-1 at home.

Week 14: Sunday, Dec. 9, vs. New Orleans Saints

The Bucs beat the Saints at home late last season, but this year it could be different. There is a good chance that Tampa may have a new head coach by this time, as Dirk Koetter’s days are numbered.

Week 15: Sunday, Dec. 16, at Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens have been very good at home, going 47-17 since 2010. It is hard to see Tampa going into Baltimore and winning.

Week 16: Sunday, Dec. 23, at Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys have not played well in the month of December, going 12-17 since 2001. This is a game that the Bucs could win.

Week 17: Sunday, Dec. 30, vs. Atlanta Falcons

The regular season finale will probably see the Bucs as home underdogs. The Bucs will try and play spoiler in their last game, but it is still hard to see them winning this one.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2018 Regular Season Win Total Prediction

Why is the win total for the Bucs at 7.5? There is no reason to think Tampa is going to be a .500 team this season. They won’t have Winston for the first three games, all of which look like losses. Koetter has somehow survived at Tampa, but he could be gone before this season is over. The Bucs have all the looks of a team that wins only four or five games, so we’ll go under the total of 7.5.

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