Stronger Defense Makes Bucs +3 Our NFL Pick When Facing Rams

Joe Gavazzi

Thursday, December 17, 2015 3:11 PM GMT

Thursday Night Football presents a matchup between the Tampa Bay Bucs and the St. Louis Rams. This time, our NFL odds handicapper has a lean on the dog! Find out why.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. St. Louis Rams (-3) 8:25 ET NFL
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Free NFL Pick: Tampa Bay Bucs +3
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

 

Sub .500 teams, the Tampa Bay Bucs and St. Louis Rams meet at 8:25 ET as televised by the NFL Network. It will have sports fans everywhere scurrying for their remote to tune into the OKC Thunder vs. Cleveland Cavaliers NBA game! This game opened with Tampa Bay as a 1 point favorite. At this writing, the Rams are now favored by 3 points. If you did not learn your lesson about following the line movements in the Week 1 MNF game between San Fran and Minnesota, then you are doomed to repeat the error of your ways.

 

St. Louis Rams
St. Louis snapped their 0-5 SU ATS streak with last week’s (21-14) win vs. the Detroit Lions. That game featured the re-emergence of St. Louis’ RB Gurley, who rushed for 140/8.8 as part of the St. Louis’ overland dominance that saw them outrush the Lions 203-111. At the same time, the pitiful passing game of St. Louis was on display. They tossed it for just 114 yards on 22 attempts. That sad sack offense is now averaging just 16 PPG, only 57% completions and just 298 yards. The Rams will clearly have less overland success against a Tampa Bay defensive front, allowing just 94 RYPG and just 3.4 YPR (2nd best in the NFL). This is the 3rd consecutive home game for St. Louis and their LHG (last home game). Realistically, at 5-8 SU ATS and with a game at Seattle next week, the Rams have no shot at the playoffs.

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
For a greatly improved Tampa Bay team, such is not necessarily the case. At 6-7 SU (remember, they were 2-14 SU LY), a win tonight and at home against Chicago next week would give them 8 victories for the season and possible hope for a Wild Card. The addition of QB Winston has proven to be a positive one for the Bucs. Though Tampa Bay is completing just 58% of their passes, they are running for 141/4.8 overland, which is 4th best in the league. That means they are outrushing the opposition by an average of 47 RYPG. Much like the record in recent NFL seasons, any NFL team who outrushes the opposition by 30 or more yards in a given game is covering 75% of the time.

 

The Pick
I invite you to put the NFL odds in your favor and following me with my NFL pick on the Tampa Bay Bucs plus the 3 points with the better running game and defense, it will provide you with a winning ticket.