NFL Wild Card Opening Odds: Dallas Cowboys At Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Written By Brett Gibbons on January 8, 2023
cowboys buccaneers wild card odds

The Dallas Cowboys (12-5) host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-9) in the NFC Wild Card Round on Monday, Jan. 16 at 8:15 p.m. ET at Raymond James Stadium. The Buccaneers thumped the Cowboys in Arlington in Week 1, holding Dallas to just three points and injuring Dak Prescott on the way. With plenty of space from Week 1, the Cowboys opened as a -3 (-110) road favorite at FanDuel Sportsbook and the Buccaneers opened at +128 on the money line. Find Cowboys at Buccaneers NFC Wild Card opening odds below.

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NFL Wild Card Opening Odds: Dallas Cowboys At Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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How The Buccaneers Got Here

Tom Brady returned for another NFL season at age 45 and proceeded to break his own completions and attempts record. Another career first: a losing record. Brady hadn’t quarterbacked a team with a losing record since high school but still winds up in the postseason. Tampa Bay took advantage of a listless NFC South and secured their berth in Week 17.

Brady finished with his lowest yards per attempt (6.4) since 2002 and his lowest touchdown rate of his career. It was hard to ignore a serious decline in production despite a cast of talented receivers around him, namely Mike Evans and Chris Godwin.

Injuries are the story of the season for the Bucs. Their offensive line was ravaged before the season even began, with four starters going down for long stretches of time. Luckily, Brady may return Ryan Jensen up front in time for the playoffs.

The Buccaneers picked up the scoring down the stretch of the season, but 10 times this season were they held under 20 points. They scored over 30 points twice, one of which was too little too late in a 41-31 loss to the Chiefs.

Defense may win championships, but offense gets you there.

How The Cowboys Got Here

No defense was more disruptive than the Cowboys. Behind superstar Micah Parsons, Dallas led the NFL in turnovers (33) and pressure rate (25.6%) while coming in fourth in sacks (51). PFF grades the Cowboys defense second in pass rush and fifth in tackling, as well.

The Cowboys scored the second-most points (28.8 per game) and led the league in turnover differential (+15). They scored at least 40 points four times, including in their late-season victory over the Eagles on Christmas Eve. A big step forward this season came in the ground game with the emergence of Tony Pollard. He and Ezekiel Elliott formed a one-two punch that finished 10th in success rate.

They also posted a 5-4 record against playoff teams during the regular season.

All of these accolades would usually end up with a first-round bye as well if not for the terrific season their division rival had. Dallas came up a game short of the NFC East title, a first-round bye, and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Instead, Dallas will likely play all of their playoff games on the road, starting with at Tampa in the Wild Card Round.

NFL Playoffs Begin Jan. 15 With Super Wild Card Weekend

The Kansas City Chiefs secured the AFC’s top overall playoff seed Saturday with their win over the Raiders. Patrick Mahomes & Co. get the coveted bye week for the Wild Card Round. The bye also fortifies their position as the Super Bowl odds favorites. On the other side, the Philadelphia Eagles locked up the NFC’s top overall seed. Led by NFL MVP contender Jalen Hurts, the Eagles also get an extra week’s rest and await winners of the Wild Card Round.

Aside from this game in the NFC bracket, the San Francisco 49ers play either the Packers or Seahawks and the New York Giants visit the Minnesota Vikings. Across the way, the Buffalo Bills host the Miami Dolphins, the Baltimore Ravens visit the Cincinnati Bengals, and the Los Angeles Chargers visit the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Playoffs.

Super Wild Card weekend begins Jan. 15 with the Seahawks at 49ers. Follow along with TheLines for NFL Playoff odds and coverage.

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Brett Gibbons Avatar
Written by
Brett Gibbons

Brett is an avid sports traveler and former Division-I football recruiter for Bowling Green and Texas State. He’s a graduate of BGSU and works as an auditor for Google content curation products. He’s also contributed to Sports Illustrated and Fansided during his young writing career.

View all posts by Brett Gibbons