Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars Preview
Where: EverBank Field – Jacksonville, FL
When: Thursday, August 17, 2017, 8:00 PM ET
Line: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+1.5) at Jacksonville Jaguars (-1.5); total: 40.5 – view all NFL lines
TV Broadcast: ESPN
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Betting on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+105)
The Buccaneers opened up the preseason with a loss, as they fell to the Cincinnati Bengals this past Friday, 28-12. They were competitive in the early stages but faltered in the second-half, where they got outscored, 17-3.
One of the more interesting news about the team, though, is them cutting their second-year kicker Roberto Aguayo – the guy they traded up in the draft for… in the second round! Aguayo, who is now claimed off waivers by the Chicago Bears, was 22-for-31 in field goals last season (71 percent, worst among kickers), and missed another FG and extra point in the Bengals game.
As the Bucs now move on, it’s intriguing to see if they plan to stay aggressive in creating rhythm for their starters. Last week, both Jameis Winston and Mike Evans appeared to not have too many limits, as they had team-highs of 13 pass attempts and four receptions, respectively – a rarity in any team in the preseason. The same goes on defense, with key linebacker Kwon Alexander pacing the team in tackles and Vernon Hargreaves recording an interception.
Betting on the Jacksonville Jaguars (-125)
Rolling in Week 1 of the preseason are the Jaguars, who edged the New England Patriots 31-24. It was a good confidence-booster for the young guys, especially since they were able to rack up all their points in the first three quarters.
Blake Bortles went 3-for-6, while back-ups Chad Henne and Brandon Allen saw most of the action, as the two combined to go 10-for-13 for 224 yards and two touchdowns. Henne’s 139 passing yards in five completions was in large part due to rookie receiver Keelan Cole, who broke out for a 97-yard score after easing past a corner on a routine go route. The run game also saw a similar explosion, with unheralded back Corey Grant bursting for a 79-yard TD run (108 rushing yards). Prized rookie Leonard Fournette wasn’t as prolific (nine carries for 31 yards), but he was at least able to punch-in a score.
We should see the same type of production this Thursday. Cole will be an interesting watch; Fournette, meanwhile, hopefully gets more touches or yardage.
As for the defense, they too should come in with a lot of confidence. They were able to put up three sacks and four QB hits on the Pats’ offensive line.
The Bucs (+1.5) win it, 24-20.
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