NFL Survivor Pool Picks and Advice: Week 4
Well, wasn't Week 3 something! Upsets galore - most of the 1 p.m. ET Sunday games had fantastic finishes. Now if we can just move on from making the National Anthem a story each week and simply play football. But I digress.
In Week 3, eight games were decided by six points or fewer, including two overtime contests. All eight of those games were decided in the final two minutes or OT. Just two teams - Atlanta and Kansas City - remain undefeated. Usually, 3-0 teams make the playoffs, but just one team last season to start 3-0 - New England - advanced to the postseason.
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Your Survivor Pool competition likely thinned about a bit with upset losses by Pittsburgh in Chicago, Miami at the New York Jets (so much for 0-16), Carolina vs. New Orleans, and Oakland in Washington. It almost thinned out MUCH MORE, but New England staged a late rally to beat Houston and Green Bay did the same at home vs. the Bengals.
The Patriots were my top choice last week, but I totally forgot to put my picks in by the noon ET Sunday deadline because I was dealing with Hurricane Irma cleanup, etc. Thankfully, my leagues all understood what was going on and let me pick a late Sunday game. I went with the Packers over the Bengals even though that worried me a bit with Green Bay missing about seven starters and Cincinnati on extra rest. I was worried even more with the Pack down 21-7, but Aaron Rodgers sparked a 27-24 OT victory.
I also owe the 49ers & Rams an apology. I wrote last week of their Thursday night matchup that "I almost don't want power back by Thursday night because then I'd have to watch the worst TNF matchup of the season." I did get power back early Thursday and glad I tuned in as that was one of the most exciting TNF games in a while. Rams-49ers!?! Just proves you never know what will happen.
Week 4 is the last before the bye weeks start. Here are the picks,only liking two road teams, with club listed first the choice.
Atlanta vs. Buffalo: The Falcons have looked shaky in two road games, albeit wins. They were unstoppable at home last year (a different home) and put up 34 points in their first game in the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium this season. The Bills might keep this close with their clock-eating running game, but I can't see them winning.
Seattle vs. Indianapolis: The Seahawks are the only double-digit favorites on the board so they will be a popular choice unless used already. But I will warn you how bad they looked at home in Week 2 vs. the 49ers (when Seattle was my top pick).
Dallas vs. LA Rams: Are the Rams actually good? They shockingly lead the NFL in scoring and have two 40-point games already. If Dallas wasn't on a short week, it would be in contention for the top spot.
Green Bay vs. Chicago (Thursday): Since I used the Packers in Week 3, I won't be tempted to do so here. I've always said you should avoid the Thursday games because of too many intangibles with such tired players. I'd steer clear of the Pack here because it will be tough for all those injured guys from Week 3 to return in the quick turnaround. Jay Cutler could never beat Aaron Rodgers. Maybe Mike Glennon can? OK, no. Amazingly, this is the first time the NFL's oldest rivals will meet with both clubs coming off an overtime victory.
New England vs. Carolina: The Patriots are oh-so-close to being 0-2 at home. This really should have been the Super Bowl matchup two seasons ago. Here's hoping you didn't take Cam Newton early in your fantasy draft. He's not the same guy from 2015.
Arizona vs. San Francisco: The Cardinals would be in contention for my top spot if they weren't on a short week after losing Monday night at home to Dallas.
Tampa Bay vs. NY Giants: Did the Giants figure something out offensively last week? Will Odell Beckham faux-urinate like a cat in a litter box if he scores this week? Probably not, and I hope not. His antics vs. Philly made for some great New York tabloid headlines, though ("Urine Big Trouble" being my favorite).
Kansas City vs. Washington (Monday): The Redskins are one of just two teams to never win at Arrowhead Stadium. I'll let you guess/Google the other one.
Miami vs. New Orleans: I must admit thoroughly enjoying Miami's Cutler being outplayed by 68-year-old Jets journeyman Josh McCown last week. Steer clear of this game, too, as it's in London and those are always unpredictable with the time change.
Minnesota vs. Detroit: Wow, did the Lions get hosed last week vs. Atlanta - even if technically the rule was correct. Lean Detroit here if Sam Bradford is out again. No way Case Keenum plays like Dan Marino a second straight week.
Jacksonville at NY Jets: The Jags are road favorites for the first time in six years. You ready to risk your Survivor Pool on Blake Bortles?
Baltimore vs. Pittsburgh: The home team usually wins by a field goal in this series. If Pittsburgh's crap Week 3 effort in Chicago costs the Bears the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 draft, I'm going to be upset.
Houston vs. Tennessee: Not long ago, this would have been an unwatchable, boring defensive game. Now it's Deshaun Watson vs. Marcus Mariota.
LA Chargers vs. Philadelphia: I'd be willing to bet there are more Eagles fans in the StubHub Center stands than those rooting for the Bolts. The Chargers have played the best of the 0-3 teams and are due a win.
Denver vs. Oakland: Both these teams laid road eggs last week on the East Coast. The Raiders don't win in Denver often.
Cincinnati at Cleveland: "Battle of Ohio" - this might be harder to watch than the awful movie "Battle: Los Angeles." When do the Cavaliers start? The Indians' first ALDS game? At least Cleveland fans have those teams. Cincinnati only has the Reds. If this were in Cincinnati, I'd probably have the Bengals as my pick this week as they are better than a 0-3 team.
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