- The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will visit the New Orleans Saints in the Divisional Round of the playoffs
- The Saints won both regular season meetings between the teams, winning 34-23 and 38-3
- Which way will the odds move as we approaching this playoff game?
The New Orleans Saints and Tampa Bay Buccaneers are set for a third meeting of the season when the Saints host the Bucs in the divisional round of the playoffs. The Saints have opened as a 3.5-point favorite for this contest but which way will the line move throughout the week?
Let’s take a closer look.
Buccaneers vs Saints Opening Odds
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||+152||+3.5 (-110)||51.5 (-110)|
|New Orleans Saints||-180||-3.5 (-110)||51.5 (-110)|
All odds as of Jan 10th at DraftKings
Tampa Bay Edges By Washington
The Bucs closed as a 10-point favorite and were expected to roll through Washington but that’s not how the game played out. The Football Team, who was without starting quarterback Alex Smith, proved to be very competitive with backup Taylor Heinicke running the show. The Bucs earned an eight-point win but the game was closer than expected.
While the Bucs offense played fairly well, there was some concerns with the defense. They allowed Heinicke – a journeyman quarterback – to pick up 306 passing, 46 yards rushing, two touchdowns and a pick. They couldn’t get off the field as Washington went seven-of-14 on third downs.
— Steve Palazzolo (@PFF_Steve) January 10, 2021
What’s going to happen next week against the Drew Brees and the Saints? The Bucs defense will have to tighten up as they’ve already been blown away twice by New Orleans.
Saints Edge Out Bears
While the Bucs win over the Football Team wasn’t all that impressive, neither was the Saints win over the Bears. They ended up with a 21-9 victory but the game was tight through the better part of three quarters. If the Bears weren’t so sloppy with dropped passes and interceptions, they probably would have been leading at the half.
The Saints offense looked mighty sluggish in the first half as they only had seven points. Things did get a little better in the second half as they scored 14 points and moved the ball well. Michael Thomas returned from injury and had five catches for 73 yards and a touchdown, and Alvin Kamara finished with 116 yards and a touchdown.
Michael Thomas TD 🚨
Bring out the slime cannon pic.twitter.com/fEQWcFkWHx
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) January 10, 2021
The concern is that the Saints have put forth disappointing efforts in recent postseasons. The effort they produced on Sunday likely would have cost them against a better foe but they’re lucky that they were only facing the hapless Bears.
Which Way Will The Line Move?
The Saints and Bucs squared off twice this season and the Bucs got roasted both times. New Orleans won 34-23 and 38-3, and those final scores don’t even tell the full story. Tampa Bay had six turnovers in those two contests; they only had a total of 17 giveaways all season.
The thinking here from bettors will be that the Saints know exactly what buttons to push to beat this team. They’re also at home and neither team looked great last week. Look for bettors to look back to those regular season meetings and bet up the Saints to -4 as a result.