National Football League
2024 NFL odds: Can Buccaneers keep underdog win streak going vs. Lions?
National Football League

2024 NFL odds: Can Buccaneers keep underdog win streak going vs. Lions?

Updated Jan. 17, 2024 12:15 p.m. ET

Baker Mayfield and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are in the midst of a unique streak heading into Sunday's NFC divisional game at Detroit.

Although the Buccaneers are 6.5-point underdogs, it likely won't faze them, considering Tampa has won four games in a row straight up (SU) as the underdog, including Monday's 32-9 wild-card win at Philadelphia.

Can Tampa Bay make it five wins in a row as the underdog?

TB 23 · DET 31
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Detroit Lions

What does history say about the Bucs' chances to cover the spread?

According to FOX Sports Research, since the 2014 season, underdogs are 18-17-1 against the (ATS) and 11-25 SU in the divisional round.

Here's Tampa Bay's results in their four-game win streak as underdogs:

12/10/23: Buccaneers (+1.5) 29, Falcons 25
12/17/23: Buccaneers (+4) 34, Packers 20
12/24/23: Buccaneers (+2.5) 30, Jaguars 12
1/15/24: Buccaneers (+3) 32, Eagles 9

In FOX Sports' weekly "Talk the Line" feature, betting analysts Geoff Schwartz and Sam "Sammy P" Panayotovich discussed the Bucs being a 6-point underdog at the time.

"This may float up a bit to 6.5 in the next day or so, but I truly believe the appetite to bet on Tampa Bay's aggressive defense will grow later in the week. Don't be surprised if we see some 5.5s closer to kickoff," Sammy P said.

"Also, Detroit just gave up 357 passing yards against the Rams and escaped with a win. Good luck against Mike Evans, Chris Godwin & Co."

RELATED: Talk the Line: Early NFL divisional round thoughts

Schwartz said Mayfield will be the difference.

"The Lions' pass defense is not good, and the Bucs will be able to keep it close or backdoor cover with their passing attack. The Tampa Bay defense will force Jared Goff into making a dumb play, which he mostly avoided against the Los Angeles Rams."

Baker Mayfield, Buccaneers crush Jalen Hurts, Eagles – Dave Helman reacts

FOX Sports NFC South reporter Greg Auman pointed out that Mayfield threw for more than 300 yards (337) and three touchdowns against the Eagles, something Tom Brady didn't accomplish in three postseasons with Tampa Bay.

"End of November, he really started hitting his stride. We're like, 'Wow, this is a guy that they could keep long term, maybe they don't draft a quarterback, maybe he's a guy that can be more than just a bridge and be somebody they really like,'" Auman said. "He had kind of gotten through that midseason struggle they had when they lost six out of seven, and now it's a lot like he did with Cleveland in 2020, he didn't just get them to the playoffs, he won a big game in the playoffs (48–37 over the Steelers)."

The Bucs and Lions met in Week 6, with visiting Detroit winning 20-6 as a 3.5-point favorite.

Something's got to give Sunday — the Lions and Buccaneers are both 12-6 ATS, best in the league.

Who are you backing in the Buccaneers-Lions game? Follow FOX Sports for the latest news in the NFL and other sports.


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