Sunday, December 17, 2017
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Dallas Cowboys-Tampa Bay Buccaneers predictions from the Tampa Bay Times Staff

I smell an upset

Tom Jones, @tomwjones: Teams with confidence going into different directions. Bucs are soaring and Cowboys reeling a bit after loss to Giants. Bucs will win takeaway battle again and pull off upset. Prediction: Bucs 27-21.

Why this could be a long game for the Bucs

Rick Stroud, @NFLStroud:

Bucs have not done a good job of stopping the run (21st) and the Cowboys have three All Pros on their offensive line and sensational rookie Ezekiel Elliott, who leads the NFL with 1,392 yards. If Elliott gets to the second level, it will be a long game for Tampa Bay. Prediction: Dallas 24-20.

Run 'em, Cowboys

Thomas Bassinger, @tometrics: Against the Giants, the Cowboys got away from running the ball. Prescott threw 37 passes, his third most this season. I'm expecting Dallas to recommit to the run, especially early, and to have success. The Cowboys rank second in the league in Football Outsiders' run offense efficiency ratings (the Bills rank first) while the Bucs rank 21st in run defense. Prediction: Dallas 31-23.

A stead diet of Elliott

Martin Fennelly, @mjfennelly: I might have liked the Bucs' chances if Dallas wasn't playing for anything and it wasn't Sunday night on national TV and the Cowboys weren't determined to take the heat off Prescott. The Bucs believe in themselves, and that's large, but a steady diet of Ezekiel Elliott will be too much too handle. The Cowboys will try to pound the Bucs and throttle Mike Evans. That will be too much for the surging Bucs defense and Jameis Winston. Prediction: Dallas 27-14.

Bucs could play well, and still ...

Greg Auman, @gregauman: It would be huge if the Bucs could pull it off. There's a vulnerability after the loss to the Giants, and an early interception would have half the Dallas crowd chanting "ROMO!" But I think Dallas bounces back. The Bucs can continue to play well and still lose this game close. The wild card? If the Bucs can really establish the run, set up play-action for Jameis Winston, then just maybe ... Prediction: Dallas 24-20.

Cowboys regroup

Ernest Hooper, @hoop4you: I was fully prepared to pick the Bucs —- before the Giants upset Dallas last week. The Cowboys were primed to go down, but I thought the Bucs, not the Giants, would be the valiant victors. Now Dallas will regroup, work out some of the flaws in Prescott's game and pull out a close one at home. It's the Bucs' winning streak that now makes them vulnerable. Plus, the Bucs are a historically meager 1-10 in road games against the Cowboys. Prediction: Dallas 17-13.

 

Comments

Bucsí Gerald McCoy, Lavonte David out for Mondayís game vs. Falcons

TAMPA ó As if containing All-Pro Julio Jones and the Falcons offense isnít challenging enough, the Bucs will try to do so Monday night without perhaps their top defensive players, tackle Gerald McCoy and linebacker Lavonte David.On Saturday, Bucs coa...
Published: 12/16/17
McCoy, David, Hargreaves all out Monday against Falcons

McCoy, David, Hargreaves all out Monday against Falcons

As if containing Julio Jones and the Falcons offense weren't challenging enough, the Bucs will try to so Monday night without perhaps their top two defensive players in DT Gerald McCoy and LB Lavonte David.Bucs coach Dirk Koetter on Saturday ruled bo...
Published: 12/16/17
Bucsí Ward glad to be back, eager for rematch with brother Terron

Bucsí Ward glad to be back, eager for rematch with brother Terron

Bucs safety T.J. Ward will make a healthy return Monday after missing two games with a concussion, and it's also a chance to face his brother Terron, a running back with the Falcons."Our whole family's going to be there, rooting us on," T.J. said aft...
Published: 12/16/17
Jones: Tony Dungy didnít leave the Bucs on the clearance rack

Jones: Tony Dungy didnít leave the Bucs on the clearance rack

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Published: 12/16/17
Jon Gruden or Tony Dungy? Why the debate rages on

Jon Gruden or Tony Dungy? Why the debate rages on

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Published: 12/16/17
Staff writers pick sides (kind of) in the Dungy-Gruden debate

Staff writers pick sides (kind of) in the Dungy-Gruden debate

Even with ó perhaps especially with óJon Gruden set to be inducted into the Bucs Ring of Honor Monday night, Tampa Bayís Great Sports Debate hasnít abated. Who deserves more credit for the biggest moment in Tampa Bay sports history ó the Bucsí Super ...
Published: 12/16/17
Nobody has Jameis Winstonís back more than Dirk Koetter, offensive coordinator Todd Monken insists

Nobody has Jameis Winstonís back more than Dirk Koetter, offensive coordinator Todd Monken insists

Nobody is a bigger supporter of Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston than head coach Dirk Koetter.That was the passionate message that offensive coordinator/receivers coach Todd Monken unloaded at his news conference Friday, saying that reports that Winst...
Published: 12/15/17
Updated: 12/16/17
Bucs journal: Adarius Glantonís experience could come in handy for ailing LB corps

Bucs journal: Adarius Glantonís experience could come in handy for ailing LB corps

TAMPA ó The Bucsí linebacker depth was tested during the first five weeks of the season, when Lavonte David and Kwon Alexander missed a combined six games with injuries.And now, as David is again sidelined by a hamstring injury, the experience gained...
Published: 12/15/17
Cannon Fodder podcast: Letís revisit Monday night games in Bucsí past

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Times Bucs writer Greg Auman has injury updates on Lavonte David and Gerald McCoy and a nostalgic trip through the Bucsí history on Monday night, including the current three-game win streak and yes, that infamous 2003 Colts game where the Bucs were u...
Published: 12/15/17
Why the Bucs need a Dungy more than a Gruden

Why the Bucs need a Dungy more than a Gruden

TAMPA ó The worst week of Dirk Koetterís life rolls on.Itís Gruden Week, just like Shark Week, only with smaller teeth and a bigger playbook. Itís the big build-up to Grudenís induction into the Buc Ring of Honor this Monday night, with the accompany...
Published: 12/15/17