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Buccaneers vs Falcons Predictions & Best Bets

Last Updated: Dec 7, 2023

The NFC South is up for grabs for all the wrong reasons, as the Atlanta Falcons’ 6-6 record is enough to give them first place in the division.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are right behind at 5-7 and already dropped their first encounter with Arthur Smith’s club, making this meeting especially critical.

The Game Day’s NFL Week 14 Odds unsurprisingly reflect that this contest between familiar teams could be among the most hotly contested of the slate.

With that in mind, let’s look at our best bets and predictions for this late-season divisional battle.

Buccaneers vs Falcons Odds

NFL odds used for this Tampa Bay vs Atlanta preview were found at DraftKings Sportsbook unless otherwise noted and are current as of Wednesday, Dec. 6 at 8:30 p.m. ET.

  • Moneyline: Falcons (-118) • Buccaneers (-102)
  • Spread: Falcons -1 (-110) • Buccaneers +1 (-110)
  • Total Points: Over 39.5 (-108) • Under 39.5 (-112)
  • Implied Score: Falcons 20.25, Buccaneers 19.25

Buccaneers vs Falcons Predictions

Score Pick: Buccaneers 23, Falcons 20

The Buccaneers have arguably been more competitive than expected with Baker Mayfield under center, with the 2018 first-overall pick doing a solid job with ball security and keeping Tampa Bay in the majority of games this season.

The Bucs did lose by 14 to both the Philadelphia Eagles and Detroit Lions earlier in the season, but their subsequent five defeats came by point totals of three (Atlanta Falcons), six (Buffalo Bills), two (Houston Texans), 13 (San Francisco 49ers) and seven (Indianapolis Colts).

Outside of the Carolina Panthers and perhaps Tennessee Titans, Atlanta may be the team least likely to be able to pull away from Tampa Bay despite the Bucs’ own average offense.

Smith continues to deploy a run-centric attack that sees the Falcons running the ball at the league’s third-highest percentage (48.9), including 50.3% at home.

That unsurprisingly leads to a lower scoring output for the offense as a whole and certainly plays a part in Atlanta having earned just 226 points in 12 games while allowing 240.

In contrast, Tampa Bay is running the ball at only a 40.25% rate, but the Bucs have only scored seven more points than the Falcons in the same number of games.

Mayfield has put up some solid numbers, however, and has been more consistent than Desmond Ridder, who lost three fumbles in the first game between the teams. Ridder also has 10 fewer touchdown passes than Mayfield’s 18, and his 14 turnovers outpace Mayfield’s 10.

A big part of the reason for Mayfield’s superior numbers is a deeper pass-catching corps that includes Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and one of the most versatile backs in the league in Rachaad White. Cade Otton is also a promising tight end who is capable of exploiting Atlanta’s weaknesses against the position.

The Bucs should also have a healthier defense this week, as Lavonte David has already been cleared of an injury designation after missing the last two games with a groin injury, while Devin White and Jamel Dean could have a chance to return from their respective foot and ankle injuries.

Ultimately, I see the team with the more experienced quarterback and slightly deeper and more aggressive offense having just enough to squeak by with a close upset win.

Buccaneers vs Falcons Best Bets & Props

Buccaneers +3 Alternate (-153)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

I’m going to hedge here at a not-awful price and use DraftKings’ alternate spread option to give us some breathing room in a game that I see as being decided by no more than a field goal in either direction.

Tampa Bay can pull off the outright win here, but with Atlanta having a -14-point differential and never really in position to blow any team out of the water, I’ll take an even safer route for my NFL Bet of the Day.

Buccaneers (-102)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

The Buccaneers arguably have slightly more cumulative offensive firepower than the Falcons, and Tampa Bay will have the benefit of a healthier defense than last week.

The Bucs should turn up the dial on their defensive aggression against a quarterback prone to mistakes, which will give them a chance to pull out a hard-fought upset win.

While this is a slightly lower-confidence bet than the one above, taking the money is certainly possible.

Falcons Under 21.5 (-142)

DraftKings Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

Atlanta’s offense has been more effective at home, but Tampa Bay held the Falcons to 16 points in the Week 7 matchup at Raymond James Stadium and could have a fully healthy defense this week.

The Bucs are allowing 20.4 points per game overall, and although they’ve done their best defensive work at home, the four teams Tampa Bay has allowed more than 21 points to on the road – the Bills, Texans, 49ers and Colts – have much more offensive firepower and/or aggressive philosophies than the run-centric Falcons.

Buccaneers vs Falcons Same-Game Parlay

Buccaneers vs Falcons SGP (+363)

FanDuel Sportsbook • WAGER: 1 unit

  • Buccaneers +3.5 Alternate (-174)
  • Over 39.5 (-110)
  • Chris Godwin Over 45.5 receiving yards (-114)

I’ve put together this feasible three-leg parlay with an appealing price on FanDuel Sportsbook, largely building on what I’ve laid out so far in my game prediction and best bets.

In this case, I’ve taken the alternate spread out beyond a field goal to 3.5 to give us even more security. Then, with my prediction of a 23-20 final score, I’m taking the Over on the slightly lower total offered by FanDuel.

Finally, since the Bucs can put up a decent score in this spot, I like Godwin to repeat some of his success from the initial Week 7 matchup with Atlanta (six receptions, 66 yards) and bounce back from his alarming receiving blank in Week 13 by eclipsing 45 receiving yards for the eighth time this season.

Author

Juan Carlos Blanco

Juan Carlos Blanco has been playing fantasy sports since 1997 and actively writing about the fantasy sports and sports betting industries since 2015 for multiple websites. He has covered a wide variety of professional sports leagues, including the NFL, MLB, NBA, CFL, Arena Football League, Alliance of American Football, XFL, NPB and KBO. He was the recipient of the FSWA's 2016 Newcomer of the Year award for his work with RotoWire.

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