- The NFL season kicks off with the Dallas Cowboys taking on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 9.
- The Bucs are favored by 7.5 points on the odds boards by sportsbooks.
- Dallas QB Dak Prescott has been nursing a shoulder injury in the lead up to the season opener.
TAMPA, Fla. - The NFL is back and the first matchup is highly intriguing, as the Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the Dallas Cowboys on Sept. 9.
The Buccaneers are looking like they’re going to be a dominant force in the NFL at least until Tom Brady leaves.
The team has returned with all of their coaching staff from their Super Bowl run, as well as all of their starting players on both sides of the ball.
After they rounded into form halfway through the season, they were incredibly tough to beat, and if they’re firing on all cylinders for this game, they should be expected to win.
Dallas Cowboys Vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Spread
- Dallas Cowboys +7.5
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers -7.5
The Bucs are 7.5 point favorites against the Dallas Cowboys, who will be bringing back QB Dak Prescott after an injury derailed his and the team's season in 2020.
However, there has been persistent coverage of a nagging shoulder injury to Prescott, which should make NFL betting fans a bit weary of wagering on Dallas this game.
Prescott's current injury has been kept under wraps so far, with knowledge being limited to the type of injury (shoulder strain) and how well it’s going (per an MRI in August, pretty well).
Prescott has been very clear that he thinks the problem is not particularly serious and that if he were playing in the regular season, he would have suited up even two weeks before this game.
“This is something we want to nip in the bud and not let continue to linger,” Prescott said. “And I think the best way we do that is stay on the pace that I am and progress through it the right way, and once Sept. 9 comes I'll play that game and move forward without ever thinking about this again."
Dallas Cowboys Vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Point Total O/U
- OVER 51.5 -110
- UNDER 51.5 -110
As far as the O/U, the matchup is quite odd. The Buccaneers had a dominant defense in 2020, and all the starters - of course - are back with the team for 2021, so the ingredients are still there for dominance in 2021.
The Cowboys had an explosive offense when Prescott was starting, as he led the league in passing yards before his injury.
In 2020, Dallas struggled in the red zone without Prescott, completing only 50% of red zone drives over the course of the season.
He’s the key to the Cowboys' entire game - whether he plays well will likely be the determining factor in whether or not Dallas can be a formidable opponent for Tampa Bay - especially in the red zone, where Tampa was well over 60% in terms of scoring rate.
Make no mistake - the Bucs are Super Bowl champs for a reason and they’re very likely to walk away with a win in this matchup.
Prescott’s condition, however, could dictate how competitive and high scoring this game is and his shoulder injury might give online gambling fans pause when wagering on the game's outcome.