The Buccaneers are in Atlanta for their Week 12 matchup against the Falcons. Both teams are coming in at 3-7 but only one has looked impressive in their last two games.
And we know that’s not the Bucs.
Atlanta has won their last two, beating the New Orleans Saints 31-9 two weeks ago and beating the Carolina Panthers last week 29-3. The Falcons are certainly flying high heading into this game so it’ll be interesting to see how these defenses handle the opposing offenses.
The Buccaneers are ranked seventh in the NFL in total offense while the Falcons are ranked 10th. Neither is doing much on the ground, however, they are both getting it done through the air as Atlanta is ranked third in the league for passing yards per game while Tampa Bay is right behind them at fourth.
Both are in the bottom seven in the NFL for most passing yards given up. This game has the potential for a lot of points to be put up through the air.
Here are this week’s staff predictions for Week 12 between the Bucs and the Falcons.
Gil Arcia (6-4)
Score Prediction: Falcons 30, Bucs 26
Why: When the Falcons were struggling, this seemed like a game the Buccaneers could win. But that’s not the case anymore. Atlanta is suddenly a very hot team in recent weeks and have the chance of winning their third game in a row. Quarterback Jameis Winston will be throwing against an Atlanta defense that has forced just six interceptions this season but he has thrown 18* (the asterisk for “technicality” on whose fault those interceptions were since that is a real thing). Matt Ryan has nearly a 70-percent completion percentage and a two-to-one touchdown to interception ratio and he’ll be going up against a secondary that allowed another NFC South veteran quarterback to throw for three touchdowns with an 80-percent completion rate. No bueno.
James Yarcho (3-7)
Score Prediction: Falcons 35, Bucs 34
Why: The Falcons’ pass rush is getting hot at the right time and they’re preparing to take on a team that allowed their quarterback to be hit twelve times, sacked twice. A big part of the recent transformation on defense the last two weeks where the Falcons beat both the Saints and the Panthers? Former Buccaneers head coach Raheem Morris. This will also be a personal game for Dirk Koetter who was fired by Tampa Bay, leading to his return to Atlanta. I think it’ll be close, but the Falcons will do enough in the end to squeak past the Bucs in this one.
Evan Winter (7-3)
Score Prediction: Falcons 32, Bucs 28
Why: The Bucs are in a downward spiral, while the Falcons are trending upward.
This team is still making the same mistakes on a weekly basis. Communication issues on defense, turnovers on offense, and penalties are just a few of the many examples one can offer.
Until that can be fixed, this team will continue to lose ball games.
Bailey Adams (5-5)
Score Prediction: Falcons 35, Bucs 27
Why: A few weeks ago, this seemed like a game even the Bucs could win. But the Falcons have beaten the Saints and Panthers in back-to-back weeks and Tampa Bay has a ton of problems that it just can’t seem to figure out. Of course, this has the potential to be a game where Jameis Winston comes out and throws for 300 yards and four touchdowns and quiets his detractors again. He’s had success against the Falcons in his career to the tune of a 20-to-5 touchdown-to-interception ratio. The defense could have a growth moment and contain Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley. But I can’t confidently pick Tampa Bay in this one. I think the Bucs hang around and put up some points, but two or three turnovers prove to be the difference in yet another loss.
Kyle Marks (3-7)
Score Prediction: Falcons 38, Bucs 24
Why: The Falcons seemed to have figured a few things out over the past couple of weeks while the Buccaneers continue to look lost. This has the feeling of an ugly game for Tampa Bay as they set to face their former head coach, now offensive coordinator, Dirk Koetter. Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley should have zero issues dominating the Buccaneer secondary. Jameis Winston will have very little room for error in this one and that doesn’t bode well for the Bucs.
David Harrison (3-7)
Score Prediction: Bucs 30, Falcons 24
Why: Both of these teams are right out of a Katy Perry song, and you’ll never know what you’re going to get when each steps on the field. So who will win? Who knows? Here’s what I do know, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are averaging 35 points per win this season and 25 points per loss. The Atlanta Falcons are averaging 27 points per win and 21 points per loss. So, when I’m on the fence, I’m going to let the averages do the talking. The Bucs are coming off an extra ugly loss, so I’m thinking they’ll come back to normal a bit, and the average of their win and loss scores is 30. The Falcons have been on a bit of tear, but I think they’ll come back down to earth a bit, and the average of their win and loss scores is 24. So, my prediction is a six point win for the Buccaneers. Why? Because, math.
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Week 12 Community Poll
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