Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Vegas bookies see about seven wins for Buccaneers
Although the Buccaneers boast nine players on their roster who have made the Pro Bowl, Las Vegas oddsmakers don't like Tampa Bay's chances of ending a five-year playoff drought.
In recent weeks, Las Vegas sportsbooks have released their 2013 over-under win forecasts for NFL clubs. Some of the early lines listed Tampa Bay's over-under total at 6.5, and the Las Vegas Hilton just set the Bucs line at 7.5 wins, two months before the start of training camp.
"The Bucs are certainly trying to win 'now' and I have positive thoughts about Tampa Bay," Las Vegas Hilton sportsbook director Jay Kornegay said. "They are doing the right things and addressing some of their weaknesses. Darrelle Revis will help with that atrocious pass defense and Doug Martin has the capability of being a star for years.
"The division will be tough again and looking over their schedule, I can't see one gimme. The Falcons are a touch overrated and the Saints are unpredictable. Carolina is very similar to Tampa Bay and they're trying to piece together a winner."
The Bucs won six of their first 10 games under new head coach Greg Schiano last season before a 1-5 finish relegated them to the NFC South basement.
Revis was acquired in a trade with the Jets before the draft and Tampa Bay signed All-Pro safety Dashon Goldson from the 49ers as a free agent.
The Bucs finished No. 9 in total offense last year, despite injuries to Pro Bowl guards Davin Joseph and Carl Nicks. Quarterback Josh Freeman set franchise records for passing yards and touchdown passes but slumped in December, throwing nine of his 17 interceptions in the final three games.
The Bucs selected North Carolina State quarterback Mike Glennon in the third round of last month's draft.
"You need a star quarterback in this league to win, but you also need all the components," Kornegay said. "Whether it's Freeman or Glennon, they will need to get solid support around the quarterback. Looking at the quarterbacks coming out this year, I personally preferred Glennon over the others.
"Overall, the Bucs will have to figure out who they want to lead their offense and they have to play overall better defense. Those are two big question marks for the NFL."