Buccaneers vs Cardinals Prediction & Picks (Week 16 Sunday Night Football): Can Arizona deliver some Christmas joy to the Saints and Panthers?

Eddie Griffin

There are only two games separating the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Arizona Cardinals in the NFL standings. But while the Tom Brady and the Bucs are closing in on another NFC South title, the Cardinals are on the verge of some significant changes.

But could be there be a surprise in store when the two teams meet in Week 16’s Sunday Night Football matchup tonight at State Farm Stadium? As always, this SNF showdown will kick off at 8:20 pm ET (5:20 pm local time), you can catch every second of the action on NBC.

The odds are not high that Arizona, who has lost four straight and six of seven, will keep Tampa Bay from collecting a valuable seventh win, especially with third string QB Trace McSorley making his first career NFL start.

But if McSorley and the Cardinals can somehow pull off the win, it will be a major boost for the New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers. Both teams moved to 6-8 with wins yesterday, and a three-way tie atop the NFC South would set up a wild final two weeks.

Read on for our Buccaneers vs Cardinals prediction, as well as our Tampa Bay vs Arizona betting picks and analysis.

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Arizona Cardinals Odds

Odds are via FanDuel as of Sunday, December 25, 2022, at 1:45 pm ET. This article may also include odds from our other recommended legal sports betting sites.


  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers -7.5 (-110)
  • Arizona Cardinals +7.5 (-110)


  • Over 41.5 (-104)
  • Under 41.5 (-118)


  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers -360
  • Arizona Cardinals +290

Will the Buccaneers Have a Field Day Against McSorley?

While this will be McSorley’s first NFL start, this isn’t the first NFL action for the former Penn State star.

During his time with the Baltimore Ravens, he appeared in three games, and he has already matched that number this year in his first season with the Cardinals.

However, there isn’t anything to indicate that McSorley will have a cheerful Christmas against the Buccaneers.

  • vs Kansas City (Week 1): 2 of 4, 12 yards
  • vs San Francisco (Week 11): 6 of 10, 59 yards, INT
  • at Denver (Week 15): 7 of 15, 95 yards, 2 INT

Getting little out of the offense puts a ton of pressure on the defense, and that is something that both of these teams have dealt with on a number of occasions this season.

Brady has not had an impressive season, and he enters today’s matchup ranking 21st in the NFL in QBR and with back-to-back games with multiple interceptions. But if there is ever a week for him to start getting things on track, this is the week to do so.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Arizona Cardinals Prediction and Picks

Buccaneers vs Cardinals Prediction: Buccaneers to win

Buccaneers vs Cardinals Pick: Cardinals team total under 16.5 points

As with today’s Grizzlies vs Warriors NBA matchup, I’m expecting the road team to win comfortably, though the Grizzlies are one of the NBA’s best teams, while the Bucs relinquished their place as one of the NFL’s best teams very, very early this season.

And just like in that matchup, I am staying far, far away from the spread, as the Bucs are only 3-10-1 ATS this season.

That record includes a 3-8-1 mark as a favorite, a 2-6-1 mark against teams currently below .500, and a failure to cover in any of their last four road games since covering at Dallas and New Orleans in Weeks 1 and 2.

But I like the under for Arizona’s team total above anything else on the board for this game.

After scoring 27 points in Colt McCoy’s first start, the Cardinals scored 10, 13, and 15 points in McCoy’s other three starts.

Anything is possible, but it is highly unlikely that McSorley will improve upon any of those numbers, based on what we have seen from him and the Cardinals.

Other NFL Week 16 Content at Betting News

Eddie Griffin

Eddie Griffin has been writing about and betting on sports for over a decade. He joined the ranks of Betting News as a content manager. For more of his thoughts on sports and sports betting, you can follow him on Twitter.

Eddie Griffin has been writing about and betting on sports for over a decade. He joined the ranks of Betting News as a content manager. For more of his thoughts on sports and sports betting, you can follow him on Twitter.