The Darrelle Revis trade certainly made an immediate impact on the public perception of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It was blatantly clear to that a defense finishing last in passing yards allowed would benefit massively from the best cornerback perhaps all time — that is if Revis can regain his pre-injury form.
Either way, this notion seems to have percolated with the bookmakers as Tampa’s climbed up the odds ladder in recent months.
(The first number is from Aug. 24; the second in parenthesis from roughly three months ago to illustrate the change of perception over the offseason.)
Super Bowl Odds: 50-to-1 (65-to-1)
Division Title Odds: +500 (+600)
Season Win Total Line: (8) 7.5
Late-May Snapshot: “Whether Tampa Bay can deliver on their +600 NFC South odds — the 65-to-1 Super Bowl odds are a tad crazy to consider in my opinion — will come down to whether quarterback Josh Freeman finally strings together a strong full season in his contract year,” I wrote earlier this offseason.
Like a few other teams including the Cleveland Browns, the Bucs are a sleepery squad to win the NFC South that must see huge improvement from their first-round quarterback to do so. Tampa is well-rounded across the roster and has seen Freeman play very well in spurts, but is also at the mercy of terrible stretches of QB play like down the stretch last season.
The Tampa secondary is greatly improved from a personnel standpoint, but the absolute strength of this roster is in the run game with Doug Martin. The second-year back has great burst and should benefit from the healthy return of guards Carl Nicks and Davin Joseph.