NFL Survivor Pools Expert Advice and Predictions for Week 2
Things started out well on the survivor pool front in Week 1 of the NFL season. Basically, if you got yourself knocked out in that week then you just may not be smart enough to play survivor pools. There were five games that were obviously playable, and all five of them turned out the right way. And this week's slate is not that tough to play with, either. There are three games that stand out from the rest - with one so obvious that you would really have to have a very good reason not to play it. Actually, there basically is no reason not to play it. Let's take a look at how the week sets up:
New England at Miami: Sometimes there are plays that are just so glaringly obvious that you don't have to think about them. Just spent the 12 seconds it takes to make the clear decision and find something else to do with the rest of your time. There is no reason to overthink this. New England came out of the gate looking to prove that the offseason of change had no impact on them. They have two robots at the helm of this team, and they showed that their programming is still in prime form. When Gronk retired it was easy to question who was going to catch passes this year. But then Josh Gordon became available, and now Antonio Brown is joining up. Suddenly pass catching isn't an issue anymore. And after the way they totally destroyed a pretty solid Pittsburgh team, there aren't too many other things that are an issue right now, either. This is a dialed in, proven, and again very dangerous team. And they are up against a total mess. Miami traded away a bunch of their team late in the preseason, which is not exactly the best way to improve morale. And they appear to be sticking with Ryan Fitzpatrick, which isn't the best way to win games. They are really short on talent. The coaching staff will be at a real disadvantage because Belichick and company know all their secrets. It's just a mess. I don't usually love taking a road team in a survivor pool unless there is a good reason to do so. But there is a very good reason to do so here. A Miami win here would be not only the most shocking win of this young season, but one of the most shocking in a few seasons. We know how this one is turning out before it happens. Take the Patriots. Just do it.
Baltimore vs. Arizona: If there is some reason you don't want to take New England - and there is absolutely no reason that is good enough in this case - then you could take Baltimore. They looked fantastic in their opener against Miami, and Lamar Jackson is clearly very dialed in at this moment. Arizona showed some nice things late in their game against Detroit, but they also showed a lot of ugliness early on. They can't protect their quarterback, and Baltimore can take advantage of that. And the Ravens are going to be able to score, and protect a lead, more effectively than Detroit can. The Ravens are at home, and they are very playable - just not nearly as playable as the Pats.
Kansas City at Oakland: Again, I don't love taking a road team, but it can be justified here. The Raiders won their opening game, but it hardly counts because it was against a Denver squad that clearly doesn't have a clue. It's tough to trust that the Raiders can avoid distractions and get ready for this one in a short week. Kansas City keeps losing offensive pieces - Tyreek Hill going down, while a clear proof that karma is real, is the latest blow. But it's not like they are going to run out of talent to work with, and Patrick Mahomes clearly seems to have picked up right where he left off as MVP last year. I just don't trust or like the Raiders right now, and this one is a mismatch. Again, though, just not as attractive as New England, because it is basically impossible to imagine a scenario where a team is more attractive than New England is right now.
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