How Loss of Antonio Brown Impacts Bucs’ Super Bowl Odds, Chances Amid Other Key Absences
Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Antonio Brown
Tom Brady’s chances to secure an eighth Super Bowl title took another hit on Sunday afternoon.
After reportedly refusing to return to the Buccaneers’ game against the Jets because of injury, star wide receiver Antonio Brown removed his jersey, pads, shirt and gloves before walking off the field into the locker room.
In his post-game press conference, Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians said that Brown is “no longer a Buc.”
While there are still plenty of questions surrounding Sunday’s incident, what isn’t up for debate is that the loss of Brown will deal a blow to Tampa Bay’s chances of defending its championship.
Brown, who is obviously a very talented receiver with a great on-field rapport with Brady, will be sorely missed simply for his ability alone.
However, throw in the other recent losses to Tampa Bay’s offense, and the compounding effect is even more significant.
Fellow wide receiver Chris Godwin is out for the season after tearing an ACL two weeks ago and starting running back Leonard Fournette is currently sidelined with an injured hamstring. Even if Fournette is able to return for a playoff run, the Bucs’ wide receiving corps will be especially thin behind Mike Evans.
So, what does this mean for Tampa Bay’s chances with Brown no longer a member of the team? Let’s take a closer look.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl Odds
On Dec. 28, the Buccaneers’ odds of winning the Super Bowl sat at +650 at PointsBet (bet $100 to win $650). Those odds have now ticked down to +700 as of early Monday afternoon (bet $100 to win $700), with other sportsbooks (like DraftKings) at +900 (bet $100 to win $900).
Sure, Tampa needed to rely on late-game heroics from Brady to top the lowly New York Jets, but a win is a win.
That said, it’s not unreasonable to think that the combination of Brown’s loss on a wide receiver group already without Godwin, plus a poor performance against one of the league’s worst teams, could both be behind the odds movement.
So, from a big-picture standpoint, what does Brown mean for Tampa’s real-world chances?
To find out I checked in with The Action Network’s NFL simulations guru Travis Reed. Per his data, the Buccaneers’ Super Bowl chances dipped from 11.5% following Week 16 to to 8.83% heading into Monday Night Football of Week 17.
For those wondering, their current 8.83% title chances translate to about +1033 odds to win Super Bowl 56, suggesting that the Bucs are overvalued in the current futures market.