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. And if you managed to escape the buzzsaw of upsets the past few weeks, this article should help you win the whole thing.
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.” Since it is so late in the season, we’re skipping the best teams since most participants have likely already used those squads.
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 13 Lock Survivor Pool Pick
Carolina Panthers (-9.5) vs Washington Redskins
Washington used a fortunate 91-yard kickoff return for a TD to get in front of the Lions and held off Detroit on a windy day at home, but the ‘Skins will be on a level playing field this week in mild Carolina. The Panthers are in must-win territory after taking a third straight loss last Sunday, and this is their last “easy” game with the following games remaining: @ATL, SEA, @IND, NO.
The Redskins rank 21st in DVOA rush defense and 26th in pass defense, which is more of a concern when facing Christian McCaffrey. Washington has allowed the ninth-most receiving yards (502) to RBs this season. The Panthers have found a go-to receiver in D.J. Moore, which will keep the defense from doubling or tripling down on McCaffrey. Washington has zero rushing TDs with a 5:5 TD:INT ratio on the road this year and Carolina is allowing a modest 4.2 YPC at home.
Week 13 Thrifty Survivor Pool Pick
Philadelphia Eagles (-9) at Miami Dolphins
This is actually far from a lock, but if you were thrifty enough to save the Eagles until Week 13, you should be pleased to deploy them in a very winnable game at Miami. The Eagles offense has been riddled by injuries, yet even if Alshon Jeffery (ankle) and Nelson Agholor (knee) remain out, Carson Wentz should be able to produce against a weak Miami defense.
The Dolphins are dead last in DVOA pass defense and points allowed per drive (2.64) this season. At their home stadium, the Dolphins have coughed up a ridiculous 16:1 TD:INT ratio while allowing a 125.6 passer rating. Miami has given up the eight-most receiving yards (619) to TEs this year and the Eagles will at least have two healthy options at that position in Dallas Goedert and Zach Ertz.
Defensively, the Eagles are playing much better since getting CB Jalen Mills back from injury, and now rank 12th in DVOA pass defense. Since Philly gives up the fifth-fewest rushing YPG (94) and the Dolphins are down to their fourth-string RB behind a weak offensive line, Ryan Fitzpatrick should be in for a long day.
Week 13 Contrarian Survivor Pool Pick
New York Jets (-3.5) at Cincinnati Bengals
We were skeptical of the Jets after they won two straight games, but a 34-3 thrashing of the visiting Raiders proves that this team is clicking towards the end of a lost season. Cincy was not competitive with rookie QB Ryan Finley, so they will go back to Andy Dalton. But without dangerous receivers, the Bengals have to lean on Joe Mixon and a run-heavy approach. However, the Jets have allowed just 48.3 rushing YPG over their last four outings.
The Bengals rank 31st in DVOA pass defense and Sam Darnold is hitting his stride with a 124.5 passer rating and an average of 10.28 yards per attempt over his last two starts. Le’Veon Bell should also be effective against a Bengals defense that yields a league-high 166.4 rushing YPG and has forced just nine turnovers during an 0-11 season.