Tampa Bay to win vs. Los Angeles Moneyline
Matthew Stafford to throw a pick? (Yes) Player Prop
By Lawrence Smelser
Los Angeles Rams vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Week 9 matchup preview and current betting lines
What a difference nine months make. A lot has changed since these two teams last met up last January. The Rams eliminated the Buccaneers in the divisional round in Tampa, 30-27, with a game-winning field goal as time expired.
Los Angeles went on to win the Super Bowl but did lose receivers, Odell Beckham, due to injury (now a free agent) and Robert Woods to the Titans in the offseason. Tom Brady retired in February but opted to return for a 23rd season at 45 years old a month later just before the start of free agency.
So far in 2022-2023, it’s been disappointing for both teams despite high expectations. The Buccaneers sit at 3-5 and are behind the 4-4 Falcons in the NFC South. The Rams are 3-4 and trail the Seahawks (5-3) and 49ers (4-4).
Los Angeles is coming off a 31-14 mauling by San Francisco. Rams head coach Sean McVay is now 3-9 against his friend Kyle Shanahan (coached together in Washington under Mike Shanahan).
After taking a 17-14 lead via a Christian McCaffrey 9-yard touchdown catch late in the third quarter, the 49ers never looked back and went on to outscore the Rams 14-0 for the remainder of the contest.
It’s been a struggle for McVay’s offense. The Rams have now scored 14 or fewer points in each of their losses.
Tampa Bay has played nearly as poorly as Los Angeles, if not worse. The Bucs have now lost three straight after falling last Thursday, 27-22, to Baltimore.
This is practically a must-win contest for both organizations if they want to stay in the playoff hunt. Oddsmakers at DraftKings Sportsbook are favoring the Buccaneers by three points. On the moneyline, Las Angeles is +125 and Tampa Bay sits at -145 odds. Among the public, bettors have put 89% of their money on the Bucs to cover the spread but 58% of their bets on the Rams to win straight up.
Players to watch in the Rams vs. Buccaneers contest
Allen Robinson: The former Chicago Bear was signed during the offseason to a three-year, $46.5 million contract that includes $30.7 million guaranteed to be the WR2 in LA. It hasn’t been sunshine and roses for Robinson so far. The 29-year-old only has 22 receptions (86th in the league) for 224 yards (91st) and two touchdowns in seven games. He’s played a little better the last two weeks with 117 yards and a touchdown off of 10 receptions. It’ll be interesting to if he can continue to grow his connection with Stafford.
Chris Godwin: The Pro Bowl wide receiver has remained healthy after returning from injury on October 2. Godwin surprisingly hasn’t reached the end zone yet but has mustered up 35 receptions for 368 yards. The slot receiver has 10 or more targets in four of his last five games. Last year, Godwin posted 98 catches for 1,103 yards and five touchdowns.
Our NFL bet of the week for the Rams vs. Buccaneers
ESTNN is providing wagerers with two free selections for this game.
Rams vs. Buccaneers Moneyline: Buccaneers ML @ -145
Many fans and experts wonder: “Why are the Buccaneers so bad?”
The team retained its core after the last offseason. Brady came back, the receiving corps still has Pro Bowlers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Talented receiving tailback Leonard Fournette also returned to the fold. Defensively, stars such as Devin White, Lavonte David and Carlton Davis all returned. The one big loss, Rob Gronkowski at tight end, seems to have made a bigger impact negatively than many thought.
The issue has primarily been red zone offense. Tom Brady is slinging the football and moving the chains. He ranks second in the league in passing yards: 2,267. When the Buccaneers enter the red zone they just can’t seem to score touchdowns. Brady has missed some throws he’s made easily in the past and the Bucs are only scoring on 45.83% of drives in the red area (tied for fourth-worst in the league).
Over the Buccaneers’ last 12 quarters of play, they’ve only scored three touchdowns. Two of those came in garbage time against soft coverage by the opposing defense trying to chew the clock.
Offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich will have to come up with a solution because the defense is playing just fine and doing its job. Tampa ranks sixth in points allowed (18.9) and 11th in yards surrendered per contest (326.4). The Bucs are 25th in scoring offense (18.3 PPG) and 21st in total offense (332.9 YPG).
As mediocre as the Bucs’ offensive stats are, the Rams are even worse. Los Angeles is third-worst in the NFL for total offense (297.4 YPG) and is only putting up 16.9 points per contest (28th). Defensively, they rank fifth in the NFL allowing only 310.9 YPG but are much lower in scoring defense, 17th (22.4 PPG).
The Rams have lost three out of their last four games and are averaging 10.75 points per game in each loss this year (four). Matt Stafford looks like a totally different quarterback from last year. The 34-year-old has thrown more interceptions (8) than touchdowns (7) and has a quarterback rating of 48.4 (18th).
Brady will need to make throws in the red zone this Sunday and should have plenty of time to do so. Tampa Bay has allowed opponents to pressure Brady on just 13.9% of pass attempts this season — second-best in the league. Los Angeles has pressured opposition signal callers on only 14.6% of passing plays this season — third-worst in the NFL.
The Rams are 2-5 against the spread this season while the Buccaneers sit at 2-6 ATS. At ESTNN, we believe the best choice when betting this game is to take Tampa Bay at -145 on the moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook.
Rams vs. Buccaneers odds: Matthew Stafford to throw an interception?: Yes @ (-130)
The Georgia product has always been known as a gunslinger and a likely candidate to toss an interception. In 14 of his last 20 games, Stafford has hit the over on his interception prop odds (over 0.5).
As mentioned earlier, Stafford has thrown a pick eight times this season, despite playing in only seven games (1.14 interceptions per game average). The long-time Lions quarterback has thrown at least one interception in five of the seven games.
Stafford will face a Bucs defense that ranks tied for sixth in the NFL with six picks so far this season. We believe it’s wise to bet that the veteran will throw an interception at FanDuel. The sportsbook is offering -130 odds for the prop.
If you’re interested in learning about more prop bets for week 9, read our NFL player props page.
Frequently asked questions regarding Los Angeles vs. Tampa in week 9
The legendary quarterback has won seven Super Bowls. The 45-year-old has six with New England and one with Tampa Bay.
If you’re interested in seeing other game lines, read our NFL Odds for this week page for more information.
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