Buccaneers vs Cowboys Odds, Picks: Our 5 Best Bets
Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images. Pictured: Tom Brady.
Cowboys vs. Buccaneers Odds
|Moneyline||-145 / +120|
|Time||Monday, 8:15 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM.|
After a wild Sunday of football, the NFL saved its biggest-name matchup for last. With that, we look for Buccaneers vs. Cowboys picks
Our staff of betting analysts has scoured the Buccaneers vs. Cowboys odds for its favorite picks. We have two people betting the spread, one bet on a total and two on player props.
Check out our favorite Bucs vs. Cowboys picks below.
Cowboys vs. Buccaneers Picks
Brandon Anderson: I never imagined I’d be backing the Buccaneers after everything we’ve seen this season, but my research flagged a barrage of trends over the past two decades in their favor:
- Wild Card Round hosts who made last year’s playoffs: 25-12-3 ATS (68%)
- Wild Card teams at .500 or below: 8-1 ATS (89%) and 6-3 SU (67%)
- Wild Card teams 15+% worse than opponent: 6-0-1 ATS (100%)
- Wild Card teams who won by 14+ in the previous meeting: 9-3 ATS (75%)
- Fade Wild Card road teams on a one-game losing streak: 14-3 ATS (82%)
Every one of those trends supports Tampa Bay, and none of my research backs Dallas.
Dak Prescott is 0-4 ATS in the playoffs. Tom Brady is 3-0 both ATS and SU as a playoff underdog. Brady is also 22-7-2 ATS (76%) lifetime as an underdog of three or less, including a perfect 6-0 SU since 2014.
Turns out that Brady guy is pretty good, especially when everyone has counted him out. The spread may say Tampa Bay is an underdog, but I have to back Brady and the Bucs.
I’ll play the +2.5 cover rather than the moneyline, because I could see Tampa losing by a point or two and still covering, so I’ll take the extra outs. I may wait to see if we get that +3 back before kickoff.
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John LanFranca: Over the final five weeks of the regular season, the Cowboys defense ranked 16th in points allowed per drive (according to Sharp Football).
Over the same span, Dallas’ defense was 18th in defensive DVOA. This defense can no longer be considered one the league’s elite. Since Thanksgiving they have barely even been tested, facing only one quarterback who’s playing in the 2023 playoffs — Trevor Lawrence. The Cowboys surrendered 40 points in that game.
This may be the healthiest the Bucs roster has been the entire season, and there are definitive signs they just now may be hitting their stride.
Tom Brady and Mike Evans had their best performance of the year in their last full game played, and just two weeks prior to that, the Bucs outgained everybody’s favorite team, the Bengals, 396 to 237 in total yards.
Tampa Bay will win this game, further reminding everybody that Mike McCarthy isn’t the coach to take the Cowboys to a Super Bowl-contending level.
Billy Ward: These are two of the more cautious teams left in the playoffs, with Dallas having a significantly negative pass rate over expectation, and Tampa Bay trying to establish the run early in most of its games this season.
While Tampa Bay throws the ball at a fairly high rate, Brady’s 3.7 air yards per attempt is one of the lowest marks of any starting QB (only five quarterbacks played at least 10 games with a smaller rate). That leads to a high completion rate, which keeps the clock moving, and less yardage per play.
Additionally, Tampa is the fastest second-half team in the league, implying that they’re even less aggressive early in games. If the full-game total of 45.5 is roughly efficient, that means we should expect more of that scoring to come late.
I would take this one down to 22 points at -110.
Nick Giffen: Our Action Network Luck Rankings showed some value on the over, which I took and tracked in the Action App at 44.5 early in the week. The full game line has since moved up to 45.5, and while I still like that, the value certainly isn’t as good.
So if you’re making a bet on the total for this game now, I prefer the second half.
These teams combine to play about one second per play faster in the second half, and the pace splits are pretty game-script independent. In a close game, Dallas and Tampa Bay combine for over two seconds per play faster, and should either team get ahead by more than a score, that jumps to at least four seconds per play.
Additionally, there are no efficiency concerns. Both teams are pretty even in defensive rush and pass DVOA metrics, so we don’t have to worry about an offensive efficiency drop based on a particular game script.
With a full game total of 45.5, that should favor more second-half scoring. We’d expect at minimum a line of 23.5, so 22.5 is a gift.
Brandon Anderson: Dallas should outclass and out-talent Tampa Bay based on what we’ve seen this season, but the Cowboys are the run-heaviest team in the playoffs and remain far too committed to establishing Ezekiel Elliott and the run game.
The Bucs defense has been far better in the first half of games, and if the Cowboys let the underdogs hang around, Tom Brady will make them pay.
Unlike Dallas, the Bucs sling it around early and often. Tampa Bay had the highest early down pass frequency in the league, and Brady set an NFL record for pass attempts.
I love backing Brady to go over 42.5 attempts. He’s topped that number in six straight starts (excluding Week 18) and 11 of his last 13 (85%), averaging 47.1 attempts during that stretch.
Whether Tampa is building a lead or pushing from behind, Brady will be slinging it, like always.
Tony Sartori: While a ton of attention will be on the two-headed monster out of Dallas’ backfield, Prescott deserves more respect in his passing yards prop. To end the regular season, he went over this total in eight of his last 10 games.
This total is set so low because the Bucs pass defense has been solid, at least on the surface level — they rank ninth in opposing passing yards per game. However, their underlying metrics suggest regression could hit the secondary in the playoffs as they finished the season ranked 15th in defensive pass DVOA.
Prescott has more than enough weapons to work with, especially on the outside. With the Bucs’ strength on defense residing with their linebacking corps, hitting guys like CeeDee Lamb for big chunk plays on the outside should help get over this number.
Both BetRivers and Barstool are offering this line that is found 5-7 yards higher at other shops. For those who want a good middle opportunity, you can take Prescott over 239.5 passing yards at BetRivers and under 246.5 at BetMGM.