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Cowboys vs. Buccaneers 2021 Predictions: Buccs and the over

Bruce Arians will be looking forward to the opening game of the 2021 season
Bruce Arians will be looking forward to the opening game of the 2021 season
By Neil Monnery

The 2021 NFL season kicks off with a mouthwatering encounter as the defending Super Bowl Champions open up their campaign against the always fascinating Dallas Cowboys. Neil Monnery takes a look at the opening game of the season...

What the Bucs have done well is rather than reload after winning, they’ve kept the playing staff together as they look to go back-to-back. A full off-season for Antonio Brown may well be key as an up to speed WR3 is another key cog that will give opposition defenses a real headache.

I could go back into my archives and find a paragraph or two to copy and paste about Father Time and Tom Brady. It has all been written a hundred times before but here we are - TB12 is now 44 years of age and still looks like he’s in his prime. With another off-season to learn and adapt Bruce Arians’ playbook, I would expect Tampa Bay’s offense to hum along nicely.

On the other side of the ledger, Dallas welcome back Dak Prescott. The fine QB who missed the majority of 2020 due to injury is key to what Kellen Moore will want to do on offense.

They also see the return of key cogs to their o-line. Tyron Smith looks healthy after neck surgery. La’el Collins too looks lean and whilst his final pre-season performance wasn’t exactly anything to write home about, just having him back 100% should give the line more stability.

With a good performance up front, it should see a return to the Zeke Elliott of old. I’m bullish on the season-long prospect of this team. I love Micah Parsons as a player. He’s a dynamic linebacker who should relish playing in the pros. Yet do I see them beating the champs on opening night? I don’t.

Spread:

The line has been set at Tampa Bay-8 and I’m taking the home team even with an eight-point handicap. I think the Buccaneers roll early and win something like 31-21.

Straight-up/Moneyline:

I wouldn’t play the Moneyline as -370 isn’t a great number but I clearly think Brady and Co win.

Over/Under Points Totals:

I like the 51.5pt number as extremely competitive. I’ve gone with Tampa 31-21 and that is an over - by half a point!

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