The Tennessee Titans visit the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for an early game Sunday. The Titans have dropped three of four to fall to 3-5. Tampa Bay has dropped four straight games to also fall to 3-5. Both teams are 2-6 in over under betting due to offenses not scoring much and defenses that have been able to hold the opposition in check. With neither team playing well, the Titans vs Bucs betting lines have this game even and the total is 38.5 points.
Location: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida
Tennessee Likely Having Second Thoughts
Before the NFL season started, the Titans had the chance to trade away Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill and start building for the future. But Tennessee decided to try one more year with the old guard and it hasn’t gone as well as Titans brass had hoped. The team is 3-5 and in last place in the AFC South. The Titans have played well at home, going 3-1. But Tennessee is 0-4 on the road, which is why they’re down in the NFL standings.
Tennessee’s numbers aren’t quite as bad as you expect to see from a 3-5 team. Tennessee is scoring 18.5 points against teams allowing 20.1 points. So they’re not as far behind offensively as it looks at first glance.
The Titans run the ball halfway decent. It’s the passing game that has been up-and-down. Tannehill is listed as questionable right now for this one, but was just demoted to backup quarterback. That means rookie Will Levis will be the starter against Tampa Bay.
Defensively, the Titans have been a little better than average. Tennessee allows 20 points per game to teams averaging 22 points. The Titans are pretty average against the run and a little worse than average against the pass. But Tennessee makes NFL teams work to score points.
Tampa Bay Fading Quickly in NFC South
The Buccaneers had to be feeling pretty good about what they had done in the offseason when they started out 3-1. But a four-game losing skid has put Tampa Bay 1.5 games back in the NFC South. But it’s also made it harder for Tampa Bay to grab a wildcard berth.
The Bucs are scoring 19.8 points per game, which isn’t bad considering they have no running game. Tampa Bay averages 3.1 yards per rush and gains 78.3 yards per game on the ground. The passing game hasn’t been bad, with the Buccaneers throwing for 224.3 yards per game.
The Tampa Bay defense has given the team a chance to win several more games. But the offense couldn’t capitalize. The Bucs have lost their last three NFL games by a combined 11 points, so they’ve had their chances. Tampa Bay is allowing 20.9 points per game against team who score 23.4 points per game.
Tampa Bay’s run defense has been decent, allowing 3.8 yards per carry and 92.9 yards per game. The Buccaneers’ pass defense was just light up by CJ Stroud, who threw for 470 yards, and hasn’t played well as of late. The Bucks have allowed more than 300 passing yards in three of their last four games.
What to Expect
The Titans didn’t do much of anything different with Levis playing against Pittsburgh. So it’s unlikely things will change against Tampa Bay. Tennessee would like to run the ball some, but are confident in Levis if they’re forced to throw a lot. Bettors may not share that confidence, as Tennessee has gone from -1 to even in the NFL spread movement. It’s not a huge line move, but it does take away the Tampa Bay +7 for teaser bettors.
The Buccaneers would like to run the ball. It’s just that they’re not very good at it. The passing game has been better, although it’s not great. But the Bucs will likely to make their short passing game handle the bulk of the work.
Who to Bet On?
The Titans vs Bucs betting lines don’t make it any easier as it pertains to the side wager. Just pick the team that you think is going to win the game. Tennessee has a small edge in yards per play, while Tampa Bay gets the nod in yards per point. It’s a tough game to call and use in your picks and parlays. Neither team is great. It’s a question of which team will play the least poorly.
The Titans vs Bucs betting lines on the total are solid. The total of 38.5 points make you pause before choosing a side. You can make a case for the over or under.
But all things considered, the Buccaneers are probably the safest side to take in this one, so take Tampa Bay even at home.
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