NFL Predictions 2009: The Buccaneers would appear to be in full blown rebuilding mode after firing Jon Gruden, making Raheem Morris the youngest head coach in the league, and jettisoning a plethora of veteran players. Back-to-back 9-7 seasons, following a 4-12 year in 2006, combined with an aging roster prompted the Glazer family to enact the massive overall. Sportsbook.com is expecting the typical results from such moves as the team's win total is set at 6.5 with the under a -160 favorite in the bookmaker's Tampa Bay Buccaneers NFL Predictions 2009.
The Bucs offense, which was serviceable a season ago, averaging 22.6 points and 341 yards per game, loses quarterback Jeff Garcia as well as Gruden's offensive mind. Former Boston College Head Coach Jeff Jagodzinski takes over as offensive coordinator, and he will most likely be working with an inexperienced quarterback.
The team did sign veteran passer Byron Leftwich in the off-season, but it makes no sense to start him considering the transition that the team is presently going through. Given that, first round pick Josh Freeman or holdover Luke McCown will probably get Gracia's old job. Freeman has the potential to be a great quarterback, but he needs a good deal of work considering he skipped his senior season at Kansas State. McCown has a career passer rating of 75.2; he has thrown nine touchdown passes and 10 interceptions during his six years in the NFL.
Tampa Bay does have a solid offensive line in place as well as a capable stable of running backs. Derrick Ward, who comes over from the Giants, will likely be the starting tailback, but Earnest Graham will also get his share of carries.
The other skill positions, wide receiver and tight end, have some talent too, in Antonio Bryant, Michael Clayton, and Kellen Winslow.
Last year the Buccaneers defense ranked 10th in points per game allowed, ninth in yards per game allowed, and fourth in passing yards per game allowed. However, five starters are gone from that unit, including longtime stalwart, linebacker Derrick Brooks. Also gone is the man synonymous with Tampa Bay defense, Monte Kiffin. Jim Bates, who was with the Broncos in 2007, takes over for Kiffin at defensive coordinator.
Only two defensive players were brought in during free agency — both linebackers — while three of the team's six draft picks were spent on defenders. There are, however, some productive pieces still in place. Barrett Ruud, who led the team in tackles last year, is back at middle linebacker and leading sacker Gaines Adams (6.5) returns to one of the defensive end spots.
Tampa Bay opens the season with a home game against the Cowboys on September 13th.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Regular Season Win Total:
Over 6.5 (+130)
Under 6.5 (-160)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Odds to Win the NFC South:
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Odds to Win the 2010 NFC Championship:
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl Odds 2010:
Get a 100% Deposit Bonus at Sportsbook.com, simply use promo code WIN100 and start winning today!