The biggest news on the eve of the 2020 NFL Draft is former-Patriot tight end, is that Rob Gronkowski has come out of retirement and is now reunited with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay.
The process was a little complicated, as Gronk is currently involved with WWE and still has a contract with New England as an active player.
Gronk had to come out of retirement and ask the Patriots to trade him to Tampa, which they did so, rather quickly.
Just an hour after NFL Insider Ian Rapoport reported that Gronkowski wanted to play with his former-quarterback, he was traded for two draft picks, a fourth-round, and seventh-round pick.
Buccaneers’ futures and win totals were already a hot bet coming into the NFL season with Tom Brady’s move to Florida, but the action started pouring in heavily after this trade was made.
BetOnline.ag moved their win total from 9 wins to 9.5 wins. Their Super Bowl odds went from +1700 to +1000. Their chances to win the NFC went from +800 to +600.
In the division, they moved from around +170 at most sportsbooks to +140, where they are still an underdog to win the NFC South against the favored New Orleans Saints, which can be had around even money at most betting sites.
There is no doubt this team has weapons. Chris Godwin and Mike Evans might be the best receiving tandem in the league right now.
But, this team still has question marks, and to see them now ahead of so many other excellent teams when it comes to Super Bowl odds is a bit perplexing to me.
One bet I do agree with the market is the over or under of 9 wins, which moved to 9.5 and Over -120 after the Gronkowski news. Even if you don’t buy that this team as a playoff and Super Bowl contender, it’s tough to seem them missing this mark.
Their schedule isn’t overly imposing. Their division doesn’t seem very tough. They should be able to get to ten wins without too much issue.
Super Bowl Futures
However, their Super Bowl odds have lost most of their value, at least in my mind. Currently, at BetOnline, they are +1000, with only the Kansas City Chiefs +650 and Baltimore Ravens +700 ahead of them.
Even at +1700, I didn’t love the Buccaneers as a Super Bowl Pick, but now, they’re far ahead of teams that, at least on paper, have far better rosters, such as:
- 49ers (+1200)
- Saints (+1400)
- Patriots (+2500)
- Eagles (+2500)
- Steelers (+2500)
- Eagles (+2500)
Also, there are some real questions about Tom Brady at age 42…
Is Brady Still Elite?
His supporting cast in New England last year was nothing special, but he didn’t do them any favors, either. He’s the greatest quarterback ever to play the game, but last year, he looked a lot more like a game manager.
Tampa Bay’s offensive line is a weak spot for them, something they may address in the draft, but that’s not an ideal situation with an aging quarterback on your roster that has zero mobility.
Yes, his receivers are great. Yes, he has an aggressive coach calling the plays on offense. But, forgive me if I say it, is Brady already done?
When quarterbacks lose the ability to compete, it goes quickly. Look at Phillip Rivers last season. Peyton Manning won a Super Bowl, but he was a shell of his former self and did it on the back of one of the best defenses ever assembled.
There is a good chance it’s still downhill from here for Brady.
And, What About Gronk?
I find it amusing to see these massive moves in betting markets after one player is signed to a free-agent contract. Yes, I am sure some of it was sharp money. But, like Brady, Gronk isn’t exactly in is prime.
He’s retired, in part due to a multitude of injuries throughout his career and didn’t exactly look too pliable the last time he was on the field. Furthermore, he’s a part-time player in this offense. At least, that’s what it looks like as of now.
One player doesn’t move the needle this much. If you got Tampa futures before the Gronk-signing and huge move, good work. But, now, the value is gone.
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