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Bucs at Broncos: By the numbers, what they're saying

Bucs at Broncos

4 p.m., Sports Authority Field, Denver

TV/Radio: Ch. 13; 620-AM, 103.5-FM

Line/over-under: Broncos by 7; 50½

The poll

Which missed opportunity hurt most in the 24-23 loss to the Falcons last week?

Failing to score a touchdown after first and goal from the 3: 54 percent

Josh Freeman missing a wide-open Mike Williams in the end zone: 26 percent

Settling for a field goal after Gerald McCoy's fumble recovery: 14 percent

Connor Barth's missed 56-yard field goal: 6 percent

Total: 701 votes

Inside the numbers

2-5 Bucs' record against the Broncos, including 1-3 at Denver; the win came in their last trip there, 16-13 in 2008

21 Combined NFL starts for Bucs corners E.J. Biggers and Leonard Johnson, who are expected to do so today

149 Wins as a starter for Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, fewer than only the 186 of Brett Favre

959 Receiving yards for the Bucs' Vincent Jackson, ninth most in the league

What they're saying

After that critical Bucs loss at home to the Falcons, I don't like their chances of making the dance. Not with road trips to Denver, New Orleans and Atlanta still to come. Still, this season's foundation-laying work by rookie head coach Greg Schiano feels a lot more solid than Tampa Bay's surprising 10-6 finish under Raheem Morris in 2010.

Don Banks Sports Illustrated

A guy like Vincent Jackson, you can do some things on offense in this league if you've got yourselves one of those. That's the matchup in today's NFL. Those are the guys you didn't see in this league years ago. They're like power forwards out there who run like sprinters. You've got defensive backs 5 or 6 inches shorter, 30 pounds lighter, trying to keep the ball out of their hands. I'm pretty sure the Broncos aren't too sad to see Jackson out of that division now.

Herm Edwards ESPN analyst in the Denver Post

The picks

This easily could go the other way, but Peyton Manning's going to have his way with the inexperienced (except for Ronde Barber) Bucs secondary. Broncos, 24-20.

Peter King Sports Illustrated

This should be filled with fireworks. The Broncos can score with Peyton Manning. And Tampa Bay has been on fire on offense the past month. Tampa Bay has some issues on the back end of their defense, which Manning will eat up. Look for a lot of points. Broncos, 38-25.

Pete Prisco CBSSports.com

Peyton Manning's offense hit an uncharacteristic lull at Kansas City last week but should find its gear-shift at home. But I like Josh Freeman, Doug Martin and that suddenly potent T-Bay offense to keep it under the bet line. Broncos, 27-23

Greg Cote Miami Herald

Buccaneers are testing everyone and will give the Broncos a mile-high scare. Broncos, 28-27

Barry Wilner Associated Press

Bucs at Broncos: By the numbers, what they're saying 11/30/12 [Last modified: Friday, November 30, 2012 9:09pm]
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