Eagles vs. Buccaneers Expert Pick and Prediction – January 15, 2024
EAGLES VS. BUCCANEERS EXPERT PICK AND PREDICTION – January 15, 2024 — If you had told the Eagles in September that their first playoff game would come against Tampa Bay, everyone in Philadelphia would have jumped on that possibility. Now? Not so much, as the Eagles look like they’re collapsing in a big way.
Something went out of Philadelphia at the end of November, and the result has been ugly for all involved. The Eagles are 1-5 SU and 0-6 ATS since beating the Bills in November, and the results have gotten more discouraging every week. The Eagles even tried to put out some starters in the season finale against the Giants to try to gain some momentum. The Giants smashed them by 17, Philly’s third loss in four games to a team that didn’t make the playoffs.
Comparatively, the Bucs come in with momentum. Tampa Bay wasn’t exactly impressive all season, but the Bucs have picked it up as of late. They were left for dead at 4-7, but they won five of their last six to steal the NFC South and a trip to the playoffs.
That’s the good news. The bad news is that out of nine wins, eight were against teams that missed the postseason. Only Green Bay snagging the final spot gave Tampa Bay a win over anyone that’s still playing football after Week 18. But the Bucs can certainly play defense, and the way they do it means they’ve got a chance to take advantage of Philly’s fold act.
(11-6 SU, 6-8-3 ATS)
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers
(9-8 SU, 11-6 ATS)
When: Monday, January 15 at 8 p.m. EST
Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla.
Public Bets: 60% on Philadelphia
Public Money: 64% on Philadelphia
Odds courtesy of DraftKings, as of January 12th, 2024.
Eagles vs. Buccaneers In-Season Trends
The Bucs might have played a soft schedule, but they’ve done a fine job of playing to their expectations. Out of the six games where they failed to cover, five of them also saw them lose the game. Only two of the Bucs’ final eight games saw the spread result and game result produce different outcomes, and they’ve mostly let the defense take the lead. In 12 games this season, the Bucs have held the opponent to 24 points or less.
Philadelphia’s offense has gone missing in action. The Eagles have scored 21 or less in five of their final eight, and of the exceptions, two were the Cardinals and Giants. Philadelphia also has not covered a spread since Nov. 20 at Kansas City, failing on seven straight occasions.
Thunderstorms could lead this to go further to the under. Temperatures shouldn’t be an issue, with the high sitting at 74 degrees, but thunder, lightning, wind and rain might make it harder to pass.
Baker Mayfield has to be accurate with his passes and make some smart, aggressive decisions. The Eagles’ biggest weakness is their pass defense, especially when the line doesn’t generate any pressure. Mayfield has plenty of work to do compared to his performance against Carolina, where the Bucs were just trying to not lose the game. This time, there’s no pressure on Tampa Bay, so Mayfield needs to be aggressive.
Jalen Hurts needs to discover what was lost from the first three months of the season. Nothing is changing with the Philadelphia running game, so it’s on him to take control of the game and avoid the back-breaking mistake.
I know Tampa Bay hasn’t been playing good competition. But the Bucs believe in themselves right now, and the Eagles are kind of lost at sea. Philadelphia really isn’t playing well at all, and any team that can lose at home to the Cardinals is perfectly capable of losing in Tampa.
Given how the offense hasn’t been great for the Bucs and has regressed for the Eagles, I think the defenses have the advantage here. I’m backing a low-scoring game, and with how these teams have played, I have to ride with Tampa.