The 2019-20 NFL season is rolling, and there are many ways to cash in on your knowledge of the most popular professional sports league in the country.
At PlayPicks, we’re breaking down the NFL Survivor Pool landscape to bring you weekly options that will help you stay alive and ahead of the field in your pool.
For those new to Survivor Pools, the format is simple: Pick an NFL team to win each week, advance if they win, and you can’t pick the same team twice. The last member of the pool standing takes home the cash.
In this article, we will identify tiers of survivor picks, ranging from “lock” to “thrifty” to “contrarian.”
The lock is our safest and most obvious pick for the week. The thrifty pick is a good team to consider at this point in the season schedule. And our contrarian pick goes against the grain to potentially keep your pool alive when the defecation hits the oscillation in the NFL and thousands of survivors lose a supposed lock to an upset.
You can also use advice from this article to place bets on FanDuel Sportsbook and DraftKings Sportsbook. Many of the recommended bets can be applied to those New Jersey books. Also, be aware that the point spread could be considerable with these teams favored to win by over a touchdown in some cases.
Week 10 Lock Survivor Pool Pick
New Orleans Saints (-13) vs Atlanta Falcons
If you still haven’t used the Saints in your Survivor Pool, this week is certainly a prime time to take them. New Orleans comes out of the bye with Drew Brees (thumb) healthy and Alvin Kamara (ankle) presumably ready to shred a Falcons defense that’s giving up the most receptions to RBs for a third straight season.
Atlanta ranks 31st in DVOA pass defense and dead last in Drive Success Rate and points allowed (3.04) per drive this season. Meanwhile, the Saints rank fifth in opponent’s Drive Success Rate and second in time of possession allowed, which is how they’ve been winning games with Teddy Bridgewater under center.
Matt Ryan (ankle) may be back for the Falcons and might make it enough of a game to cover this lofty spread, but the Saints are 8-2 after a bye this decade and a ridiculous 50-21 when listed as a home favorite during that span.
Schedule Notes: The Saints have three more division games after this, with only their test against the Panthers coming at home. Otherwise they face top teams in the NFL this season, with the exception coming at Tennessee in Week 16 in a game that could have inclement weather or other factors in December.
Week 10 Thrifty Survivor Pool Pick
Indianapolis Colts (-10) vs Miami Dolphins
While they finally got in the win column against the plummeting Jets, the Dolphins are still a very poor team that can be exposed in a number of ways. Miami lost its No. 2 receiver (Preston Williams) and new featured back (Mark Walton) in the win over New York and will be on the road for only the fourth time this season.
Miami is 3-15 when listed as a road underdog since 2017 and the Colts are a league-best 11-1 when listed as a home favorite during that span. Frank Reich is an incredible coach and his ability to strategize could overcome the potential absence of Jacoby Brissett (knee) in addition to T.Y. Hilton (calf). The Colts could win this game without attempting over 15 passes, because their offensive line ranks ninth in power run blocking and the Dolphins are coughing up 150.8 rushing YPG.
Schedule Notes: The Colts host the Jaguars in Week 11, but Nick Foles should be back under center for that one. Indy hosts Tennessee in Week 13 on 10 days rest, so it might be worth using the Colts in that divisional bout if you want to save them.
Week 10 Contrarian Survivor Pool Pick
New York Giants (-2.5) at New York Jets
If you think the Falcons could pull off a shocking divisional result or the Dolphins somehow maintain their momentum by taking down a shorthanded Colts squad, picking the Giants this week could essentially win your pool.
Nobody is going to trust New York’s better football team in this crosstown battle, but the Giants are far, far superior to a Jets team that just lost to the Dolphins. Sam Darnold is justifiably “seeing ghosts” because his offensive line is tied for last in adjusted sack rate (12.6%) and could still be without center Ryan Kalil and tackle Kelvin Beachum. Le’Veon Bell (knee) is also questionable and the Jets appear to be ready to tank for a top draft pick with team chemistry on fire in the dumpster.
Meanwhile, the Giants are getting healthier and nearly took down the well-rested Cowboys on Monday night. For what it’s worth, the Jets have one of the worst records (7-17) in the NFL this decade when playing with a rest advantage. The Giants had won five straight over the Jets before losing, 23-20, last December. Now the G-Men have far more weaponry with an athletic young QB to complement the game-changing presence of Saquon Barkley.
Schedule Notes: The Niners host the Cardinals in Week 11 and host the Falcons in Week 13. However, if you’re struggling to find reliable options this week, consider using the 49ers on Thursday night.