Week 1 Fantasy Preview: Bucs @ Vikings

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Minnesota Vikings Best Lines Available

    Buccaneers(+205) @ Vikings(-230): O/U 46.0
    Buccaneers +5.5 (-110), Vikings -5.5 (-110)

    Happy Week One Sunday to all!  Points Points Points.  I expect there to be a lot of disgusting games in week one.  That said, I could see this Vikings-Bucs matchup being the highest-scoring game of the slate.  Historically, you think of the Vikings having a scary defense in a tough home environment.  Do not have those expectations anymore because this is one of the worst defenses in the NFL.  Honestly, I don’t see the Bucs having one that is much better.  I see two gunslinger quarterbacks with great receiving corps and two turnover-dependent defenses that are going to ease into the season by giving up an easy 30 points.

    Main Storylines to Watch

    What Vikings team are we going to see this year? If you follow the Fantasy Road Show, then you how I feel about the Vikings this year.  I believe you are going to see a much different football team than the one we saw last season which won 11 one-score games.  Replacing Adam Thielen and Dalvin Cook in your offense is going to experience a learning curve.  Thielen has been a Viking since 2014 and Dalvin Cook since 2017.  I do like the receiving pieces they have added in Addison and Hockenson but you cannot expect the rookie to step in for Thielen and not skip a beat.  Mattison to me is just not an impressive running back.  He is going to get you the yards given to him but he is by no means a playmaker in which you had in Dalvin Cook.  Combine all of that with the schedule to start the season for the Vikings and I am projecting them to finish last in the NFC North.  Bringing us back to this game, I think this is a sneaky must-win game for the Vikings whose next two games are at Philadelphia and home against the Chargers who I think could win the AFC this year.  You do not want to start the season 0-3 as we’ve seen teams fall into quicksand from there with their next two home games against the Chiefs and Niners.

    How real is the Bucs rebuild?  Real enough that they brought in Baker Mayfield as their starting quarterback.  That said, I’m excited to see how he manages an offense consisting of Mike Evans and Chris Godwin.  I am also excited to see if Mike Evans is a Buc this entire season.  If you’re the Bucs, you need to have a real conversation with Evans to see if he values retiring a Buccaneer or winning a championship more.  Then, you need to either trade him to a contender or pay him a respectful extension.  That is what Mike Evans and his nine straight 1000-yard seasons mean to the franchise.  You want to be known as a franchise that takes care of their Hall of Fame players, end of story.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers


    Baker Mayfield (QB21): Baker Magic will be on full display against a bad defense in the Vikings.  Baker was on my GREEN LIGHT list this week as I think this will be one of those games where you hear the narrative from mainstream media “Is Baker back?” only to follow it up with a 3 interception game at Philadelphia in week 3.  If you are still in the age of streaming quarterbacks, put Baker on your shortlist but that is getting pretty desperate, in my opinion.


    Rachaad White (RB13):  Another Buccaneer sitting on my GREEN LIGHT list for this week.  Rachaad is going to benefit from Baker Mayfield checking down to his running back more than any other QB in the NFL.  Rachaad is arguably one of the best-receiving backs in the NFL so I truly think he has a chance to catch 80balls this year.  Expect him to eat early & often in this game and find himself in the endzone during this high-scoring game.


    Mike Evans (WR29) & Chris Godwin (WR17):  Mike Evans is professional enough to emotionally set aside contract negotiations to do what he does and ball out.  If Mike Evans extends his streak to 10 seasons with 1,000 yards receiving then he will need games where he goes off for 150+ and this could be one of them.  Godwin is a target hog and expect to see him have a huge game in Minnesota.  I am not a DFS expert but I imagine the Bucs stack has a low ownership percentage and has the potential to be a week winner.  There is a scenario where Baker throws for 300+ 3tds and the majority of that goes to Evans & Godwin.


    Cade Otton (not in top30): Irrelevant, he will live on your league’s waiver wire regardless of depth.



    Kirk Cousins (QB10):  KirkCo cannot ask for a much better week one matchup to start the season.  The Bucs could easily be one of the worst teams in the NFL this year and you get them at home.  Time to step up and show off your new look offense and showcasing your new offensive weapons.


    Alexander Mattison (RB22): I am not the biggest Mattison guy in the world but the theme of this article is points.  If Mattison finds the endzone, he’s in store for a huge day.


    Justin Jefferson (WR1): Top receiver in the NFL gets a cupcake matchup in week one.

    Jordan Addison (WR46): Addison is going to have the opportunity to start his NFL career off with a bang.  This is going to be one of the storylines I follow in this game. How does the rookie wide receiver fit into the offense early in what should be a relatively easy matchup for him?

    K.J. Osborn (WR56): K.J. is the receiver (over Addison) that I think has the ability to catch his way into the top 5 this week.  I could easily see Osborn breaking free for two touchdowns 40+ and finding himself in a 8/150/2 type of opening game.


    T.J. Hockenson (TE1): Hock has now been paid and it’s time to show the world why you’re the most expensive TE in the league.  If Cousins continues to target Hockenson the way he did at the end of last season, then he will be a lock for a top 3 fantasy tight end.

    Betting Insight

    Hammer the over 46.  I could sit here and dig up potential prop bets for you but save yourself the time.  Take a look at yourself in the mirror and ask “how many units do I want to bet on the Vikings/Bucs week one?” then put that on the over.

    BET: Game Total O46 points (-110) 1.1u to win 1u (available everywhere)

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