Thursday Night Football Preview: Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Baltimore Ravens

The 3-4 Tampa Bay Buccaneers will try to turn around their spiralling season when they host the 4-3 Baltimore Ravens on Thursday Night Football in Week 8. The Bucs offense has stumbled out of the gate through seven weeks, but they'll have a chance to finally build some momentum against a Ravens defense that hasn't lived up to expectations. The Bucs and quarterback Tom Brady are 2-point favorites to put an end to a two-game losing streak.
The Buccaneers offense has yet to find its rhythm in the 2022 regular season. The team ranks 26th in scoring this year thanks in large part to a league-worst run game that has averaged a ghastly 64.4 yards per game on an abysmal 3.0 yards per attempt. Typically, the Bucs could rely on an elite passing attack to compensate, but Brady has yet to get on track with a receiving corps that has seen its stars in and out of the lineup all season. The quarterback still ranks sixth in passing yards and sports the best interception percentage in the league this year, but a lack of explosive plays and persistent third-down failures have sabotaged the team again and again. 

The defense has mostly fared better, ranking fifth in points allowed and seventh in yards allowed. They've also allowed the sixth-fewest passing yards in the league and the fourth-best net passing yards per attempt mark. If Brady can eventually get the pass game on track, the Bucs still have a roster that can do some damage in the NFC. Meanwhile, the Ravens offense has had its own problems in recent weeks. After jumping out to a scorching 33.0 points per game start in the first three weeks, the Ravens have regressed to the pack over their past four games, scoring 20.5 points per game while totalling six turnovers. Their rushing attack still rates as one of the league's best, ranking fifth in rushing yards and second in yards per carry. That should serve them well against a Bucs run defense that isn't as stout as its reputation: after notching top-three finishes in rushing yards allowed from 2019 to 2021, the team ranks 16th this year.

As for the Ravens defense, they've continued a disappointing trend after seemingly decades of dominance. They rank 21st in points allowed and 23rd in yards allowed through seven weeks this year. Game after game, the Ravens are proving last season's 19th and 25th finishes were no flukes. They'll hope that pass rusher Jason Pierre-Paul's debut against his former team sparks a stronger effort. Pierre-Paul tallied 33 sacks and won a Super Bowl over four seasons with the Bucs before joining the Ravens this season.

The Baltimore Ravens visit the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday Night Football at 8:15 pm ET.
Photo Credit: © Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports