The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-8) travel to Maryland this weekend for a showdown with the Baltimore Ravens (7-6). Kickoff is set for 1:00 PM EST on December 16th at M&T Bank Stadium and the game will be broadcast on FOX.
Oddsmakers opened this game up with the Ravens listed as 8-point home favorites. That line has remained unchanged after early betting, as Baltimore is currently available at -8. The total for this matchup is 47 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 15 NFL odds and for more links to our individual game previews.
Ravens vs Bucs Vegas Odds & Game Preview
Baltimore had their three game winning streak come to an end last weekend, losing a tough 27-24 decision on the road against Kansas City. The Ravens were within striking distance all game long but couldn’t find a way to grind out the victory in the second half despite outscoring the Chiefs 14-7. QB Lamar Jackson played well yet again, passing for 142 yards and two touchdowns while also adding 67 rushing yards on 14 carries. Although it was announced earlier this week that Joe Flacco was healthy enough to play in Week 15, Jackson will continue to start for the foreseeable future after reeling off several strong performances. RB Gus Edwards continue to shoulder most of the load out of the backfield, racking up 67 yards and 16 carries in Week 14. As a whole, Baltimore is currently averaging 24.7 points per game on 369.6 yards of total offense.
The Ravens have been fantastic on the other side of the ball through their first thirteen games, allowing opponents to score just 18.5 points per game (1st overall) on 294.0 yards of total offense. They have been especially good against the run, giving up only 87.8 rushing yards per game (4th overall).
Tamp Bay couldn’t find a way to win their third straight game last weekend, falling 28-14 at home to New Orleans. The Bucs hung tough for the first couple of quarters before the Saints scored 17 unanswered points in the final fifteen minutes to win by two touchdowns. QB Jameis Winston certainly didn’t have his best game, going just 18/38 for 213 yards and two touchdowns. Winston also turned the ball over a couple of times, which proved very costly for the Buccaneers down the stretch. Mike Evans led the way in the receiving game, catching four passes for 86 yards. The duo of Adam Humphries and Chris Godwin was quiet after a solid Week 13 performance, as the pair combined for only 55 yards. Overall, Tampa Bay is currently averaging 25.5 points per game (10th overall) on 430.1 yards of offense.
The Buccaneers have been dreadful on defense for much of the year, giving up an average of 29.5 points per game (30th overall) on 387.9 total yards of offense per game. They have consistently been exposed through the air, as opponents are currently averaging 268.5 passing yards per game (27th overall).
Free NFL Betting Prediction: Baltimore -8
I have really been impressed with how Lamar Jackson has played since taking over for Joe Flacco several weeks ago. The Ravens were definitely one of the better defensive teams over the first half of the season, but the offense had looked mediocre at best. However, Jackson’s ability to use his legs has made a huge difference for Baltimore, as they have now scored 24 or more points in four straight games. The Bucs have played well against good teams a few times so far this year, but they certainly struggle a lot on the road in colder environments. It also doesn’t help that they will now have be facing a top 3 defense that held the high-flying Chiefs to just three touchdowns.
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The Ravens are 7-2 overall in their last nine games against Tampa Bay. They are also 4-2 ATS over their last six home games. The Buccaneers are only 1-5 ATS in their last six road games. They are also a brutal 3-7-1 ATS over their last 11 games overall.
This matchup might be a little more appealing if Tampa Bay was playing at home on Sunday, as Winston and Co. have definitely performed much better at Raymond James Stadium this season. I certainly don’t expect the Bucs to grind out a win at M&T Bank Stadium, which is always one of the toughest buildings to visit in the entire league. Jackson has really been rolling on the ground since he got his first start several weeks ago – he should be able to post another 100+ yard rushing performance against a leaky Bucs defense. I’m laying the 8 points in this spot – give me Baltimore.