The 2020-21 NFL season continues as the league juggles its schedule to make room for several postponements due to positive COVID-19 test results. Once betting lines are set, there are many ways to cash in on your knowledge of the most popular professional sports league in the country, including survivor pools.
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 our strongest survivor pick for this week, called a “lock“, and a “thrifty” pick that can help you save better teams for later in the season.
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 land mine identifies a team that might be a popular pick but could come up short 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 sportsbooks. Also, be aware that the point spread could be considerable with these teams favored to win by over a touchdown in some cases.
Week 8 Lock Survivor Pool Pick
Tampa Bay Bucs vs New York Giants
Obviously the Chiefs () are the biggest lock this week as massive home favorites against the Jets. But if you want to save KC for a tougher week, the Bucs get their easiest draw the rest of the season at the Giants this Monday night.
Tampa Bay () is clicking on both sides of the ball with a league-leading defense and a rushing attack that ranks sixth in DVOA. Tom Brady is finding his rhythm and Rob Gronkowski is rounding back into form, giving the Bucs another option if James Bradberry is able to hold down Mike Evans.
But the biggest mismatch in this game resides on the other side of the ball, where a Giants O-line that ranks dead last in RB yards created (3.11) and is stuffed at the highest rate in the NFL, faces a Bucs front that allows a league-best 66 rushing YPG. The Bucs pass rush is second in adjusted sack rate (10.3%) and will tee off on Daniel Jones if the Giants can’t run at all.
Week 8 Thrifty Survivor Pool Pick
Tennessee Titans vs Cincinnati Bengals
Joe Burrow has turned the Bengals into a competitive outfit, but without Joe Mixon (foot), he may not be able to threaten a rapidly improving Titans defense. Malcolm Butler is returning to shutdown form and Keith Byard and Kenny Vaccaro are a great tandem at safety. After getting burned early by the loaded Steelers, that group put the clamps down last week and the momentum should carry over.
Derrick Henry is in a huge bounce back spot against a Bengals team that ranks 23rd in DVOA rush defense and is coughing up the fifth-most rushing YPG (133.7) this season. With A.J. Brown back to full speed and Corey Davis off the COVID-19 list, the Titans () have a balanced attack that will be too much for Cincy’s talent-deficient D to handle.
Week 8 Survivor Pool Land Mine
Green Bay Packers vs Minnesota Vikings
The Packers () bounced back impressively in Week 7 with Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams demolishing the Texans in a runaway victory. Adams shredded the Vikings young secondary for 156 yards and 2 TDs in a Week 1 win at Minnesota, but that group has played much better and had an extra week of prep time to scheme against Green Bay’s No. 1 receiver.
The Vikings are 12-7 when playing with a rest advantage under Mike Zimmer, who is 2-2-1 at Lambeau Field. If Dalvin Cook (groin) is healthy coming out of the break, Minnesota can control the pace of play against a Packers team that ranks 25th in DVOA rush defense. The Vikings averaged 6.09 YPC on 22 totes in a Week 1 loss to Green Bay, so they could definitely win this division showdown if they get an early lead.