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NFL Picks: Buccaneers vs. Steelers – Preseason Showcase Talent
August 11, 2023
The NFL preseason commences this Friday, with two teams in the midst of transition after bidding adieu to their iconic players. No more Brady, no more Big Ben, two franchises that haven’t cleared the shadow of legends begin their migration to new pastures. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are set to host the Pittsburgh Steelers at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, 7:00 p.m. ET.
BUSR NFL Odds:
Spread: Steelers -3 (-110), Buccaneers +3 (-110)
Moneyline: Steelers -144, Buccaneers +119
Total: Steelers O39 (-110), Buccaneers U39 (-110)
A New Chapter Begins for the Buccaneers
For three years, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had Tom Brady, the legend, as their cornerstone. A Super Bowl victory and three consecutive playoff appearances. However, with Brady’s recent retirement, Tampa is faced with the task of filling those colossal shoes and making up for the territory lost in NFL Lines.
Baker Mayfield, a former No. 1 draft pick and a star from his time with the Browns, is tapped for this responsibility and will start this preseason game. Yet, with injuries impacting his recent seasons, there is a veil of uncertainty surrounding his performance. Will he manage to rekindle the spark he once had with the Browns? Fans will also witness Kyle Trask’s prowess, as he challenges Mayfield for the starting spot, with Trask tipped to start the next preseason game.
The Buccaneers’ depth will be on display with the likes of Trey Palmer, the rookie from Nebraska, taking the field. He joins others like David Moore, Devin Thompkins, and Rakim Jarrett, vying for a position behind the Buccaneers’ star trio: Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Russell Gage. While there’s ambiguity surrounding Raschaad White’s participation, expect veterans like Chase Edmunds, Keshawn Vaughn, Sean Tucker, and Ronnie Brown to demonstrate their mettle. Defensively, Yaya Diaby, a third-round pick, might be introduced as an outside linebacker, while Josh Hayes from Kansas State will contest for a starting spot. However, the availability of first-round draft pick, Calijah Kancey, and center Ryan Jensen remains uncertain.
Steelers: Rising from the Ashes of 2022
Post-Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers embarked on a shaky journey, initially trusting Mitch Trubisky to steer the ship. A disappointing 2-6 beginning threatened Coach Mike Tomlin’s unblemished record. However, in a strategic pivot, rookie Kenny Pickett was entrusted with the helm, propelling the team to win 7 of the subsequent 8 games. Narrowly missing the playoffs at 9-8, this season sees Pickett as the undeniable starter, fostering hopes of a successful campaign.
This inaugural preseason game will primarily spotlight reserves, as both squads ascertain their final lineup. This implies limited field time for stalwarts like Kenny Pickett, Diontae Johnson, Najee Harris, and Pat Friermuth. Pittsburgh has kept their cards close regarding their starting quarterback, yet Mason Rudolph and Trubisky are anticipated to contest fervently for the deputy role. Fans can also expect to glimpse rookie tight end Darnell Washington, seasoned running back Jaylen Warren and rookie tackle Broderick Jones in action. The defense may witness Joey Porter Jr., a second-round pick, at cornerback aiming for a starting position. Meanwhile, Damontae Kazee and Tre Norwood are on the fence, and unfortunately, both Alfonzo Graham and Cory Trice are side-lined due to injuries.
In conclusion, as these two teams kick off their preseason, fans and analysts alike will be keenly watching how both teams adapt to their new eras post-Brady and Roethlisberger. With new and returning talent on both sides, it promises to be an intriguing start to the NFL preseason. With all the roster changes and new faces, the NFL Odds for both teams this season will be intriguing to watch.