NFL Survivor Pool Picks and Advice: Week 8
I always recommend waiting until the last possible second to make your Survivor Pool Pick because of potential last-minute injury news, but I really stress that here for Week 8 because there could be trades all weekend ahead of Tuesday's NFL trade deadline. On Tuesday alone, we saw the league's two unbeaten teams get better with New England acquiring Falcons receiver Mohamed Sanu and San Francisco acquiring Denver receiver Emmanuel Sanders.
Likely we see more fairly significant trades - the Dolphins no longer want running back Kenyan Drake, for example. Might the disappointing Chargers dump Melvin Gordon ahead of free agency? Could winless Cincinnati be bowled over by an offer for No. 1 receiver A.J. Green?
While it's easy to pick against the winless Dolphins every week - they play Monday in Week 8 and I never recommend a Monday game in Survivor just in case - you might also want to put Atlanta in that group as the fire sale seems to have begun (former NFL sacks leader Vic Beasley is likely next) and Dan Quinn is a Dead Coach Walking.
Buffalo was my top pick last week at home against Miami, but I warned you I didn't love the Bills in that spot because they aren't all that great. And indeed the Fins led entering the fourth quarter before imploding. Really no Survivor-altering upsets in Week 7.
Here's a look at Week 8, with Dallas and Baltimore on the bye. The team listed first is my choice. By the way, Sunday is the very rare day where there's at least one game from each of the four major sports leagues - it's being called the Sports Equinox. Although if the World Series is a sweep, which I doubt (or I suppose rained out), then that's off.
15. Minnesota vs. Washington (Thursday): Breaking a rule here too in that I normally don't like Thursday games, but at least you can not be locked into this one like you would be on a Monday night when all other games are over. Expect a monster game from Kirk Cousins against his former team that didn't want him all that much.
14. LA Rams vs. Cincinnati: Game is in London or this would be No. 15 - might still be. Those London games can have some wacky results, though, with all the travel involved, etc. The Rams smartly didn't go back to the West Coast after Week 7 in Atlanta and stayed there a few extra days before flying to the UK.
13. Pittsburgh vs. Miami (Monday): What a crappy week of prime-time games. Sadly, there's no World Series game on Monday. Warriors-Pelicans would have been a nice alternative, but no Zion Williamson. Ugh. Maybe I'll catch up on "Homeland."
12. Houston vs. Oakland: Somewhat strange to me that Jon Gruden would trade former first-round cornerback Gareon Conley to Houston this week. Wouldn't Conley be more than happy to give inside information on the Raiders to his new teammates? Why not just wait until Sunday evening or something to complete that trade if you are Gruden?
11. New Orleans vs. Arizona: The Cardinals are on a three-game winning streak, which matches their total amount of victories last year. Maybe Kliff Kingsbury was a good hire. I do think this could be a bit of a trap game for the Saints ahead of their bye, but they'll pull it out.
10. Detroit vs. NY Giants: Yeah, I had the Lions beating the visiting Vikings last week. Ah well. Detroit has lost starting running back Kerryon Johnson to injured reserve. Thus J.D. McKissic and Ty Johnson will be popular fantasy pickups this week. Just don't believe struggling Giants QB Daniel Jones winning on the road right now.
9. Indianapolis vs. Denver: So the Colts give up first-round bust receiver in Phillip Dorsett a few years ago to get QB Jacoby Brissett, and he turns into a darn good player. Meanwhile, the Bears trade up to take Mitchell Trubisky at No. 2 overall and pass on Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson? Life's not fair.
8. Jacksonville vs. NY Jets: Short week for the Jets, who looked completely inept in Monday's loss where Sam Darnold's quarterback rating was lower than my college grade point average. Oh, and Darnold apparently saw dead people on the field?? Just Google "ghosts" and "Darnold" if you don't know what I'm talking about.
7. New England vs. Cleveland: 100 percent believe the Browns can win this game coming out of their bye. They went to a very good Baltimore team a few weeks ago and slammed the Ravens. Plus, the Patriots are on a short week. Will the upset happen? Probably not, but this is why I have the Pats this low.
6. San Francisco vs. Carolina: I'm not buying the 49ers yet because their offense isn't very good - although Sanders will certainly help. Carolina sticks with Kyle Allen, he of the 5-0 career record as a starter. Panthers also off their bye. Hmmm … rethinking.
5. Chicago vs. LA Chargers: I can't even think about Trubisky or Matt Nagy right now without needing a Pepcid. So freaking disappointed. The Chargers are simply a bigger mess at the moment as they continue to find unique ways to lose.
4. Seattle at Atlanta: Move this up quite a bit if Matt Ryan doesn't play; he left last week's blowout loss to the Rams with an ankle injury and took my fantasy team down with him.
3. Tennessee vs. Tampa Bay: The Titans already have benched their former Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback who was taken very high in the 2015 draft in Marcus Mariota. The Bucs have yet to do the same with their guy, Jameis Winston, but if he turns the ball over six times like he did in Week 6 - Tampa off its bye - then this might be it for him too.
2. Green Bay at Kansas City: Potentially spectacular Aaron Rodgers vs. Patrick Mahomes MVP matchup ruined by Andy Reid stupidly calling a quarterback sneak in Denver last Thursday night. Mahomes dislocated his kneecap, and I'm guessing Fat Andy throws that play in the trash for good.
1. Philadelphia at Buffalo: Bills are easily the most overrated 5-1 team in the league - OK, they are the only one with exactly that record, but you get my drift. Their defense is legit, but that offense is Bears-like.
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