Both the Falcons and Buccaneers were blown out in the NFC South last week, however this week I think things will be much different for Atlanta, and more of the same for the beleaguered Tampa Bay Bucs. The latter are looking for the bleeding to stop as head coach Raheem Morris is hanging onto his job by a thread, meanwhile for the Falcons their game last week was ugly against the Saints in a game where New Orleans were more concerned with records than class, but that's another story.
As it stands the Falcons are favored by over 10 pts, and this could be the undersell of the week.
The only way the Falcons don't blow out the Bucs is if they choose to rest a lot of their offensive players and conserve them for the playoffs. Not only are Tampa Bay struggling on defense, but they have lost faith in head coach Raheem Morris which is definitely weighing heavily on their play on Sundays. The Bucs were unable to do anything against Cam Newton and the Panthers last week as they were essentially a revolving door allowing 40+ points hung on them.
In this vein I find it surprising that Vegas are only setting the line at 46 pts. Again, unless the Falcons plan to rest their players there's little reason to think they wont be able to have a big game. Matt Ryan is feeling it right now, and was one of the few bright spots in the Falcons' loss last week. In his own way Josh Freeman is returning to form too as he played quite well last week in his loss to the Panthers, although suspect pass protection isn't giving him enough time to complete his passes.
When it's all said and done I'm going all the way with ATL this week, that is of course unless we get info that Mike Smith will rest the majority of his players, which is a distinct possibility. If that happens then I wouldn't touch this game, it's too much of a wild card... but as it stands I like Atlanta outright, and the over.
To read more on the Falcons head over to The Falcoholic. For more on the Buccaneers please visit Bucs Nation.