NFC Division Round Odds: Los Angeles Rams vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers Betting Odds, Preview, and Predictions
Los Angeles Rams vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers Betting Odds, Preview, and Predictions
For the second time this season, the Rams and Buccaneers go head-to-head. While the Rams won the first meeting 34-24 at SoFi Stadium in Week 3, the Buccaneers will have home advantage this time around when they reprise hostilities in the NFC Division Round.
Books tip the Buccaneers as the home favorites, but the public is overwhelmingly leaning towards the star-studded Rams as the road underdogs. Does the public have it right?
Los Angeles Rams vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Date: Sunday, January 23, 2022
Time: 3:00 PM ET
Location: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa Bay
TV Network: NBC
Click here for Rams vs Bucs odds
Rams Betting Preview
The Los Angeles Rams’ roster is made of a swash of stars, the so-called who’s who of the NFL. At first sight, bettors could be forgiven for being partial towards the attractive Rams purely based on the look of them. However, in the dismantling of the Arizona Cardinals in the Wild Card round, the Rams were ruthless on the way to the lopsided 34-11 triumph.
The Rams looked the part of contenders. Matthew Stafford had a solid game, although he had little to do as he finished with just 13 of 17 passes for 202 passing yards and two touchdowns. He did use his legs as he toted the ball on six carries for 22 yards and a score. The Rams defense played the biggest factor, setting the tone for the game right from the start. They sacked Murray twice, kept him under never-ending pressure, and forced two interceptions.
There’s something to be said about the fact that the Cardinals were in over their heads, Kyler Murray looked like a deer in the headlights in his playoff debut, and Kliff Kingsbury was thoroughly outmatched tactically in his first-ever postseason assignment. But the Rams did that. They unsettled the Cardinals in no uncertain terms and deserve some credit for it. J.J. Watt put it aptly when he called it an “embarrassing performance.”
Buccaneers Betting Preview
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are coming off a comprehensive 31-15 win over the Philadelphia Eagles that fell in line with the markets for this game. Books opened the Buccaneers as the 8.5 to 9-point home chalk – and even though the line dipped to 7.5 points by kick-off, it still registered as a betting mismatch.
The Buccaneers got off to a flying start, underscoring the gap in quality and class between the sides. Tom Brady and the offense put up 31 points over the course of the first three quarters while the defense held the Eagles scoreless. Going into the fourth quarter, the Buccaneers were up 31-0. Tom Brady easily could have sat down for the fourth quarter, but the veteran wouldn’t quit the field and finished the game going 29 of 37 passes for 271 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions.
Brady connected with his trusted BFF Rob Gronkowski and Mike Evans for the touchdown passes. The Buccaneers also rushed for 106 yards and two scores courtesy of Ke’Shawn Vaughn and Giovanni Bernard. The defense was merciless, forcing three fumbles one for a loss. They pressured Jalen Hurts into two interceptions and sacked the second-year quarterback twice.
Rams vs Buccaneers Odds
The markets opened this game with the Buccaneers tipped as the field goal favorites, but the line quickly dropped down to Bucs -2.5 where it has held relatively firm. According to consensus betting reports, the Rams are getting upwards of 75% of early bets – and that likely prompted the line to move against the Bucs. The total for this game opened on 48.5 points before dropping down to 48 points.
Rams vs. Buccaneers Line Movement
Rams vs Buccaneers Predictions and Picks
For a second year, the Rams are through to the Division Round of the NFC playoffs. Last year, they were dismissed by the Green Bay Packers 32-16. Sean McVay will be hoping his gamble at the quarterback position will pay dividends this time around as the Rams look to overcome the defending Super Bowl champions on the road.
The last time the Rams played the Buccaneers, Stafford had a stellar game. He threw for four touchdowns, two to Cooper Kupp in the 34-24 win in Week 3. But that was then. Both teams have undergone noteworthy changes and lost players to injuries amongst other things. It’s likely to be a whole different ball game as a result.
On paper, both these sides have a lot to recommend for the win. There are stars aplenty, and the coaching is unquestionably good in both camps. One could say the playing field is level but for one key position.
The differentiating aspect between these sides is the quarterback position. Matthew Stafford hasn’t been in high-pressure situations often, and certainly never this deep in the playoffs. He's through to his first-ever division round game.
That lack of experience can't be overlooked because it's potentially deciding. There’s a reason why many would suggest his biggest downside is his inability to be clutch in the big moments. Tom Brady has been there and done that. Even when his team is trailing, there’s always a chance he’ll rally them back into contention. That’s simply an intangible that’s hard to bet against.
- Pick: Buccaneers -2.5 (-117) (Bet $117 to win $100)
Nikki Adams is a freelance sports writer that’s honed in on the world of sports betting. She joined OddsChecker in 2021 after having covered a number of major American sports, including NFL and NCAAF, for several other publications in the industry. When she’s not looking for the best betting angles and writing engaging and insightful articles, she’s likely on a tennis court or binging on reality TV.