Raymond James Stadium Tampa

Carolina Panthers vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Pick & Prediction JAN 9TH 2022

NFL | FOOTBALL
TV: FOX | CBS
Logo Carolina Panthers
VS
Logo Tampa Bay Buccaneers
0
OPENNER
43.5

8 +137
CURRENT
43.5o -110

+390
MONEYLINE
-490

17
SCORE
41

The last week of the NFL is full of divisional games, some of which have no playoff implications. The game between the Panthers and Buccaneers is one of these games. The Panthers have already been eliminated and Tampa Bay already has a spot. Still, a lot of pride goes into these games, and teams can evaluate certain players.

This is also a great chance for the Buccaneers to evaluate their backups. The starters won’t play much as they will be resting up before the playoffs.

That means no Tom Brady. The Buccaneers are looking to grab another Super Bowl; risking injuries won’t help. So, Blaine Gabbert could be the starting quarterback on Sunday. If he is, the Buccaneers are still in capable hands.

Panthers vs. Buccaneers Odds for Week 18

TV: FOX

MONEY LINE: Panthers (+290) vs. Buccaneers (-380)

SPREAD: Panthers +8 (-110) vs. Buccaneers -8 (-110)

GAME TOTAL: Over 42.5 (-110) vs. Under 42.5 (-110)

Panthers vs. Buccaneers Preview, Trends and Stats

As of today, the Panthers are eight-point underdogs in this matchup. The reason for this is that neither team hasn’t submitted the lineups. However, if Tampa Bay announces they are resting their starters, the lines could change. On the other hand, the Panthers will be playing all of their active starters, including Sam Darnold, Chuba Hubbard, and Robby Anderson.

The Panthers have lost six straight games but hope to close the year on a high note. Unfortunately, they’re playing a pretty stingy defense. The Buccaneers allow an average of 21.0 points per game, not great, but not the worst in the NFL.

The Panthers will need to find a way to sustain drives. The last thing they need is a repeat of their 32-6 loss to the Buccaneers.

We all know that Tampa Bay is in the playoffs, but what’s their plan for Sunday? The Buccaneers need to win to secure home-field advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

They could clinch the #2 seed with a win and an L.A. Rams loss. However, Tampa Bay would be no higher than third in any scenario where the Rams win.

If they've built up a comfortable lead, we would assume the Buccaneers would rest starters in the second half. Carolina's defense allows the second-fewest yards per game at 299.5 but ranks in the middle of the pack in points allowed at 22.7. The offense will need to start strong, which could be easier said than done.

Panthers vs. Buccaneers Predictions

Panthers 10 - Buccaneers 21

This is a pretty heavy spread to cover for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who are 8-8 ATS. Not to mention, they lost one of their best receiving threats in Antonio Brown last week when he quit on the team in the middle of the game.

Unfortunately, the Panthers have been awful against the spread, especially recently. Carolina has gone 0-6 ATS in their last six games. This season, they have an ATS record of 5-11, giving us very little confidence in them.

We'll take Tampa Bay to cover.

EXTRA POINTS

1. Carolina is 1-5 ATS in their last six games against Tampa Bay.

2. The Carolina Panthers are 2-5 ATS in their previous seven games on the road.

3. In their last seven games, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are 5-2 ATS.

Best Bet: Tampa Bay Buccaneers -8

PREDICTION
Carolina Panthers
17
25
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Carolina Panthers vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tom Brady threw a touchdown pass and Leonard Fournette scored two touchdowns as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the visiting Carolina Panthers 31-17 on Sunday afternoon in Tampa, Fla.

It was the home opener and the first victory for Brady, a six-time Super Bowl winner, in a uniform other than the New England Patriots.

Brady, a week after receiving criticism from coach Bruce Arians, completed 23 of 35 passes for 217 yards with an interception. Fournette's 46-yard touchdown ramble with 1:48 to go put him at 103 rushing yards on 12 carries for the Buccaneers (1-1).

The Panthers (0-2) committed turnovers on their first two possessions under first-year coach Matt Rhule, whose team fell into a 21-0 hole.

Christian McCaffrey scored on second-half runs of 1 and 7 yards for Carolina. Teddy Bridgewater completed 33 of 42 passes for 367 yards with two interceptions.

Bridgewater's interception and fumble marked the first two Carolina turnovers.

Tampa Bay opened the scoring on a 7-yard run by Ronald Jones II. Then Brady connected with Mike Evans for a 23-yard touchdown play on the first snap following Bridgewater's lost fumble.

The Buccaneers scored their third touchdown following Carolina's failed fake punt in the second quarter. Fournette capped a 65-yard drive with a 1-yard run with 3:01 left in the half.

McCaffrey put the Panthers on the board with his first touchdown run at the 8:36 mark of the third quarter.

Carolina then converted on fourth-and-2 from the Tampa Bay 7 when McCaffrey took a pitchout and ran to the end zone with 13:25 remaining. McCaffrey injured an ankle on the play and didn't return.

The Buccaneers stretched their edge to 24-14 on Ryan Succop's 33-yard field goal with 6:18 left. That came a play after LeSean McCoy dropped a would-be touchdown pass in the end zone.

Joey Slye's 23-yard field goal with two minutes left cut the margin to 24-17, but the Panthers had only two timeouts left. Tampa Bay's Rob Gronkowski recovered Carolina's onside kick before Fournette's second touchdown run.

Tampa Bay played minus receiver Chris Godwin, who led the team in receiving yards in the opener but is in the concussion protocol. The Panthers were without veteran defensive tackle Kawann Short due to an ankle injury.

--Field Level Media

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