So Tom Brady’s Tampa debut didn’t quite go to plan did it.. not only did the Saints dominate the game but Brady made a few errors, the worst of which was the pick six he threw, making it three consecutive games Brady has thrown one. On the whole the offense looked as if they weren’t quite on the same page and the loss of Chris Godwin for this one isn’t great but I’m far from worried about this offense, it’ll click sooner rather than later and when it does the whole league will be on notice. On D they looked solid upfront in stifling the run, holding the Saints to under 85 yards on the ground, Alvin Kamara caused them the most problems last week as a receiving option from the backfield though turning 5 receptions into over 50 yards and a score which is positive news for Christian McCaffrey.
The Panthers pushed the Raiders all the way in Charlotte in week 1 and looked pretty good on Offense, posting 30 points, McCaffrey had 2 scores and nearly 100 yards on the ground whilst new boy, Robby Anderson went for nearly 115 yards and a TD through the air and although it was against an unspectacular Raider defense these are good signs for a new offensive system and play caller but getting Run CMC going against this Bucs defensive front is not going to be easy, this might be the time to get him out of the backfield in a similar role to the one we saw Alvin Kamara in last week. Not so encouraging however was the defense who failed to to register a sack or interception and gave up over 370 total yards, this is a defense which has been heavily invested in with draft picks this year and seems to still be a work in process.
Give me Tampa here, Brady’s home opener and against a divisional rival who’re somewhat rebuilding. If the Bucs somehow lose this game and go 0-2 on the year and in the division there’s going to be lots of noise about the team seemingly build to ‘win now.’
Seeing how the Panthers fared against Josh Jacobs in week 1 I like the Bucs chances on the ground and I’m plucking for new boy, Leonard Fournette to get his first score for the Bucs in this one.
PREDICTION: BUCCANEERS 27 – 21 PANTHERS
BEST BET: Leonard Fournette Anytime TD – 7/2 with PaddyPower. 1 point bet.