Week 9 Survivor Advice: Pros & Cons of Five Popular Picks

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In this post, we’ll analyze the pros and cons of NFL Week 9’s five most popular NFL survivor picks: San Francisco, Buffalo, Seattle, Green Bay, and the New York Jets. We’ll also recap the impact of last week’s results on NFL survivor pools.

This Week 9 survivor pool analysis is brought to you by TeamRankings, the only site that provides customized survivor pool picks that maximize your edge. Since 2017, TeamRankings subscribers have reported nearly $1.5 million in survivor pool winnings.


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Last Week’s Survivor Picks Recap

Everyone stayed alive (well, pretty much everyone, and condolences if you are part of the 0.2% that did not). The 12 largest favorites all won in Week 8, and our subscriber recommendations also advanced 100% of the time.

However, that doesn’t mean it was a wash when it came to our picks versus the public. The public was heavily on Minnesota, as nearly half of all entries went with the Vikings, but they have great future value. Our recommendations leaned most heavily on Pittsburgh, a team that has very little future value. That means our subscriber entries are more likely to have an edge in future weeks when having Minnesota presents a good survivor option.

Now let’s get to the NFL Week 9 survivor pick analysis.

Survivor Pool Pick Analysis For Week 9

Below we analyze the pros and cons of the five most popular survivor picks for Week 9. To be clear, we’re not implying that any of these teams are necessarily the best pick for your pool — because there is no such thing as a universally “best” survivor pick.

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For example, if you’re in a pool that requires making two weekly picks later in the season, your optimal pick strategy is likely to favor taking a bit more risk early on. If you’re in a tiny, standard-rules pool with 10 or 15 friends, being more conservative is usually a better call.

Whatever your pool situation, though, the analysis below will help you weigh the pros and cons of the picks you’re most likely considering.

Note: Data referenced below was current as of Thursday morning, and could change between posting time and kickoff time. Our product updates multiple times per day with the latest information.

San Francisco 49ers (at Arizona)

Survival Pool Pick Popularity: 44%
Point Spread: -10

Pro: Highest Win Odds. San Francisco is rolling, and even with playing on the road, against a team with more of a pulse than the worst units in the league (Arizona has won three games and tied another), they come in as a 10-point favorite with 80% win odds.

Con: High Popularity. The 49ers are at 44% and climbing over the last day as more picks get entered (they were at 39% on Tuesday). Relative to their win odds, that is a pretty high figure that lowers some of their value.

Con: Future Value. San Francisco continues to surge up the power ratings and will be a good option in several other weeks. If you don’t use them this week, San Francisco is also going to be one of the safest options in Week 11 (hosting Arizona) and Week 15 (vs. Atlanta).

Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

Buffalo Bills (vs. Washington)

Survival Pool Pick Popularity: 18%
Point Spread: -9.5

Pro: Win Odds similar to San Francisco. Buffalo is the second-largest favorite of the week, just behind San Francisco (The betting market-implied odds have them at 80% while our models give them a 74% chance of winning).

Pro: Popularity held down because of heavy usage in Week 7. For those who have read our past advice, or have subscribed to get our customized survivor picks, you know that we recommended the Bills far less in Week 7 than the public pick rate, which was nearly 67%. That’s because of a week like this, where their popularity would be held down but they would still be a top choice against Washington.  

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Con: Future value. The Bills get the Dolphins again in Week 11 and play the Jets at home in Week 17.

Seattle Seahawks (vs. Tampa Bay) 

Survival Pool Pick Popularity: 17%
Point Spread: -6

Con: A Tier Below Top Options in Win Odds. Seattle plays a little livelier underdog in Tampa Bay, who has already knocked out a chunk of survivor entries when they beat both Carolina and the Rams. Our projections have them at 70% win odds.

Pro: Low future value. Seattle has a tough stretch coming up, and likely won’t be a survivor option again until Week 16 when they host Arizona.

Green Bay Packers (at LA Chargers)

Survival Pool Pick Popularity: 5%
Point Spread: -3

Con: Big Drop in Win Odds. The Packers are a risky choice on the road against the Packers, and we project eight other teams to have better win odds in Week 9. 

Con: Future Value. The Packers are currently projected to have the highest win odds in Week 14 when they host Washington and are a reasonable option in at least three other weeks. 

New York Jets (at Miami) 

Survival Pool Pick Popularity: 4%
Point Spread: -3

Pro: Low Future Value and Tiebreaker Considerations. The Jets, let’s face it, aren’t very good this year, but they have been a little better than the Dolphins. That means they have little value in survivor pools other than this week or when they play the Dolphins again in Week 14. Add in that they don’t project to have many wins, and if your pool uses a season wins the tiebreaker, the Jets could be an important choice.

Con: Lower Win Odds/Higher Risk. You would be putting your survivor life in the hands of the J-E-T-S. The Dolphins have played better recently with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback, and the Jets have laid two stinkers in a row after shocking the Cowboys. There are plenty of safer options than going with New York in Week 9.

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Which Week 9 Pick Is The Best For Your Survivor Pool?

The teams above are the most popular survivor picks in Week 9, but that doesn’t mean one of them is the best pick for you. Every possible pick has an expected value and future value associated with it, and those values vary based on the characteristics of your pool.

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We built our NFL Survivor Picks product to do all of the number-crunching needed to identify the best picks for your pool. You answer a few questions about your pool’s size and rules, and it provides customized pick recommendations for all of your entries using the latest matchup data, betting market odds and public picking trends from national survivor pool sites.

The proof that it works? Over the last two NFL seasons, our subscribers have reported winning over $1.5 million in survivor pool prizes. We invite you to give it a try with our free trial or to sign up for the season at the link below. 

Good luck in your survivor pools this week!


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