New York Giants (19.5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (30.5) -11.5
Odds to Score: Fournette -110, Evans -110, Godwin +110, Barkley +125, Gronkowski +140, Golladay +225
Bucs have lost each of their last two games, getting outscored 65-46 (23 PF v 32.5 PA)
Giants have won two of their last three games, outscoring opponents 65-39 (21.7 PF vs 13 PA)
Injuries: TB: A. Brown (O), Vea (D), Gronkowski (Q), Pierre-Paul (Q) | NYG: Ryan (O), Shepard (O), Carter (O), Barkley (Q)
The New York Giants travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Super Bowl champion Buccaneers. The Bucs are on a bit of a losing skid as mentioned above, and the Giants have been hot, winning 2 of their last 3 games. With the Bucs currently tabbed as massive -11.5 home favorites, I’m very skeptical that the Bucs will actually cover that spread given that Brady has not been good against it in primetime games to this point in his career (surprisingly). 11 points is a lot, especially against a Giants team that is expected to get back not only Saquon Barkley and Kenny Golladay, but also starting LT Andrew Thomas. With Thomas in, Danny Dimes is averaging over 120 more passing yards per game than without him. Let’s also not forget that Jones had a career game in his first career start against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2019 with 4 all-purpose TDs in that game. With the Bucs also more vulnerable than usual against the run this week, with key nose tackle Vita Vea out and JPP questionable to play, I think there are some paths to success for Saquon Barkley. The most likely path would come as a receiver, where the Bucs have given up heaps of fantasy points to pass catching RBs all season. Kadarius Toney will man the slot, and I think is likely to be the most active of the Giants pass catchers sans-Barkley on this slate. Slayton, Golladay, and Engram are all GPP plays while the former provides some salary relief. Golladay is my favorite of the three as a leverage play. Kyle Rudolph is viable in single game formats here as well, as one of the predominant red zone targets for Daniel Jones this season and at a cheap price.
On the Buccaneers side, there is obviously a lot to like. Tom Brady is expensive, and will see high ownership, but owns the highest PFF grade amongst QBs in the NFL on the league’s highest scoring offense. Leonard Fournette is a stellar play here but comes in at a very expensive price tag. Still, he has the highest odds to score of any player on this slate, and is the unquestioned starting RB in a massively favored Bucs team playing at home against the Giants 30th ranked DST vs the run. Fournette is both CPT/FLEX viable tonight. Chris Godwin is my favorite receiving option here, and will draw Darnay Holmes in coverage (57.2 coverage grade per PFF). This matchup for Godwin is far superior to that of Mike Evans, who draws a corner he’s had issues with for many years in James Bradberry dating back to his days in Carolina. Due to Bradberry’s solid track history on Evans, I’ll put my money on Godwin here tonight and take a lean against Evans, though I do think Evans warrants tournament consideration given his massive red zone role and 7 TDs in his last 5 games. Tyler Johnson is flat-out too expensive for a WR3, I’ll pass. I’m not super hyped on the any of the TEs given Gronk’s health and the overall split between Brate and Howard. I’ll take a couple shots at Gronk against the Giants who’ve always been bad covering TEs, but worry he may play with limitations in health or snap count tonight. Howard is cheap enough to take a couple shots at as well, but I’m not looking to play Brate at all.
I think you could make a case for either kicker tonight as they are almost always in my player pool in showdown, especially with a void of cheaper options in the value range for the most part. Bucs DST (upside) and Giants DST (price) can also be included in your mix.
Here are my preferred plays for tonight’s Showdown slate:
Everyone mentioned above
Darius Slayton (value)
Saquon Barkley (volume)
Kenny Golladay (GPP)
Kyle Rudolph (red zone role)
Ryan Succop (floor)
Graham Gano (floor)
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