Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Week 15 Expert Picks: Buccaneers vs. Ravens

The Bucs are the underdog as they face one of the league's best defenses on the road in Baltimore.


After the tale of two halves that was Week 14's contest against the Saints at home, the Buccaneers will assume the underdog role as they travel to Baltimore on Sunday, rounding out their AFC North opponents for the season. The Bucs have had decidedly more success at home and it doesn't help that they will be greeted in Baltimore by one of the league's best defenses.

However, it's not a defense without some holes. Though the Ravens rank first in fewest points allowed, allowing just 18.5 per game, they are struggle significantly inside the red zone. They are allowing opponents to score over 65 percent of the time once inside the 20-yard line. They also struggle with actually taking the ball away, despite the amount of pressure they bring. They have a -6 turnover margin on the season, which ties for 23rd in the league. The Bucs and their high-powered passing offense could have an opportunity to again play a clean game as they try to get past Baltimore's third-ranked passing defense.

On the other side of the ball, the Bucs' defense will have to account for the rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson. Jackson has filled in for the injured Joe Flacco the past four weeks, going 3-1 in that span. He's more mobile than the team's veteran and presents more of a ground threat than most quarterbacks, period. Head Coach John Harbaugh announced Jackson would again be starting against the Bucs, though Flacco is now healthy and participating in practice fully, according to the team's injury report. With more shuffling expected in both the linebacking corps and the secondary come Sunday, it'll put a little bit more pressure on the guys up front to keep Jackson contained and in the pocket as much as possible.

See the experts' rationale for their picks below.