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Tampa Bay Buccaneers Odds Take Hit After Antonio Brown Exit

Bill Speros for Bookies.com

Bill Speros  | 7 mins

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Odds Take Hit After Antonio Brown Exit

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Antonio Brown’s abrupt exit from the Buccaneers during their Week 17 win over the Jets and his subsequent outbursts have helped to put a dent in Tampa Bay’s NFL odds to repeat as Super Bowl champions.

The Buccaneers have fallen to +900 at DraftKings to win Super Bowl 56 at SoFi Stadium on Feb. 13. That’s the lowest price Tampa Bay has seen since winning the Super Bowl in February. The Buccaneers were as high as +500 in Week 15, but that was before a 9-0 loss to the New Orleans Saints at home. They were the overall odds-on favorite to win Super Bowl 56 until that loss, as well.

The loss of Brown on the field – and whatever distractions he is creating off it – has compounded a series of late-season injuries that have decimated a Bucs roster brought back in whole to defend its NFL championship. Most of Brown’s fury has been directed at coach Bruce Arians. Brown proved invaluable for QB Tom Brady in the slot and on specific long routes. He also caught a touchdown in Super Bowl 55.

NFL CHAMPION: Super Bowl 56 Odds For All 32 NFL teams plus NFL Futures Odds

Buccaneers NFC Championship & Super Bowl Odds

Tampa Bay has seen its odds tumble in the race to win the NFC Championship, as well. Tampa Bay’s price to repeat as conference champions peaked at +225 at FanDuel on Dec. 15. It is now +400 on the same site. The issue there is as much the loss of home field throughout the playoffs as any specific injury. The Buccaneers will likely have to win at Green Bay – for the second year in a row – to reach the Super Bowl.

Here’s a look at how the Buccaneers odds to win Super Bowl 56 and the NFC Championship have moved at sportsbooks and betting sites this season.

Week NFC Championship Odds Super Bowl 56 Odds
Week 1+275+600
Week 2+225+500
Week 3+260+500
Week 4+280+550
Week 5+280+500
Week 6+280+500
Week 7+250+600
Week 8+250+550
Week 9+310+650
Week 10+280+550
Week 11+310+650
Week 12+280+600
Week 13+280+500
Week 14+275+550
Week 15+225+500
Week 16+330+650
Week 17+350+750
Week 18+450+900

Odds via DraftKings and current as of Jan. 6. Be sure to check out the DraftKings promo code for all the latest promotions.

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WR Chris Godwin had 98 catches, 1,103 yards and 14 TDs in his 14 games. He underwent surgery to repair his ACL and MCL this week and is done until at least the start of the 2022 season.

WR Mike Evans is nursing a nagging hamstring injury. He could play in Week 18 to close out the NFL betting season, but the Buccaneers need him fully healthy for the postseason. RB Leonard Fournette, who came from obscurity and Jacksonville last season, has been another vital cog in Brady’s offense. Fournette suffered a hamstring injury in that loss to the Saints on Dec. 19. The Buccaneers are “very optimistic” Fournette will be back for the playoffs. “TD” Lenny amassed 1,266 yards from scrimmage and scored 10 times for Tampa Bay in his 14 games.

The Buccaneers are without linebacker Lavonte David (foot) on defense but remain “hopeful” he, too, can return for the playoffs.

Antonio Brown Turns On Brady, Trainer

Several offshore sites are offering odds on Brown’s potential next team in 2022, and on an imaginary fight between Brown and Jake Paul. But legal, regulated sites have avoided either market. Brown has been cut by the Bucs. He and his agent have claimed Arians demanded Brown play despite an injured ankle and cut him on the spot during the game against the Jets, however that has been disputed.

While Brady expressed concern and asked people to focus on Brown’s mental health and wellness, the mercurial receiver on Thursday unloaded on the GOAT and his trainer/guru Alex Guerrero in a series of social media posts. One of those posts, in which Brady was tagged, also featured Brown’s bank account and routing numbers.

Brown posted a series of text messages, purportedly between himself and Arians, in which the coach posted: “This is BA. Make sure you are ready to go tomorrow. We ARE NOT resting for the playoffs” on Dec. 30.

Brown also blasted Guerrero, claiming Brady’s long-time trainer took “100K” from him but never fulfilled their deal. The Buccaneers claim Brown was cleared to play Sunday by team medical personnel. They officially released Brown Thursday after saying they could not get with him to schedule a follow-up examination on the ankle in question.

Brady Used To ‘Ignoring The Noise’

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Odds Take Hit After Antonio Brown Exit 1

These sorts of injuries and antics would probably derail most teams, both entering the playoffs and trying to defend an NFL championship. But the presence of Brady, who is having one of the best statistical seasons of his 20-year career, remains a critical factor when handicapping the Bucs’ chances throughout the playoffs. Brady has seven Super Bowl rings, more than any NFL franchise.

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If Fournette, David and Evans are healthy, the Bucs remain a tough out – even on the road in Green Bay or Los Angeles. The ageless Brady has routinely defied both Father Time and the doubters again in 2021. Brady will likely lead the NFL in completions, attempts, yards passing and touchdowns when the regular season ends this week. He has thrown 12 interceptions, but an analysis of those show four of those passes being tipped.

The Bucs can finish either second, third or fourth in the NFC. Tampa Bay needs a win over Carolina at home and loss by the Rams against San Francisco to grab the No. 2 spot in the conference. Green Bay has clinched the top overall seed.

About the Author

Bill Speros for Bookies.com
Bill Speros
Bill Speros is an award-winning journalist and editor whose career includes stops at USA Today Sports Network / Golfweek, Cox Media, ESPN, Orlando Sentinel and Denver Post.