NFL Survivor Pool Picks Week 8: Advice and Predictions
The NFL season continues to cruise by with a clearer picture being painted of which teams are legitimate and which simply don’t have it this year. In Week 7, favorites went 8-6 straight up and 6-8 against the spread. The most notable upset was the Panthers taking down the Buccaneers by a score of 21-3 despite going in as 13-point underdogs. There are four teams returning from their bye week with just the Chiefs and Chargers set to be taking the week off. Here is a look at the Week 8 slate with my Week 8 survivor pool picks ranked from most confident to least confident:
Doc’s Sports offers NFL expert picks for every game on our NFL predictions page.
Philadelphia Eagles (-11) over Pittsburgh Steelers
The Eagles have looked nearly flawless to start the season and are coming off a bye week. Kenny Pickett is coming off a three-interception performance against the Dolphins, and this is the second time he has thrown three picks in his four games under center. The Eagles are leading the league in forced turnovers, and this feels a recipe for disaster for the rookie quarterback. Pittsburgh is 2-8 in their last 10 games against the Eagles, and this is a trend that should be expected to continue. Count on Philadelphia to deliver a reminder of how good they are following their week off and secure a blowout victory.
Sunday Night: Buffalo Bills (-11.5) over Green Bay Packers
Coming into the season, this was a matchup circled on NFL fans’ calendars, but it has lost some of its allure due to the Packers slow start. Aaron Rodgers is averaging a career-low 228.1 yards per game, and the Packers are coming off a 23-21 loss to the Commanders. The Bills have looked impressive on both sides of the ball and come in with a 5-1 record, as Josh Allen leads the MVP race. His 330 passing yards and 17 touchdowns to just four interceptions have been a major reason for the team’s success. The Bills are the better team on both sides of the ball, and Rodgers no longer looks to have enough magic to keep the team in the game on his own. Count on the Bills to cruise to a comfortable victory.
Las Vegas Raiders (-2) over New Orleans Saints
The Raiders are fighting an uphill battle to get their season back on track. They took a step in the right direction with their 38-20 win over the Texans last week and have a valuable chance to continue building this against the Saints. The Las Vegas offense ranks third in the NFL in points and first in score percentage. They will be facing off against a Saints team that has allowed a league-worst 34.7 points per game over their last three outings and lead the NFL with 16 turnovers. New Orleans has lost five of their last six, and this will continue to be the case against a Raiders team playing with desperation and more overall talent.
Thursday Night: Baltimore Ravens (-1.5) over Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Buccaneers are coming off back-to-back upset victories at the hands of the Steelers and Panthers, and their outlook continues to get grimmer. This is just the 13th time in Tom Brady’s career in which he will enter the game as a home underdog. Expect Tampa Bay’s banged-up offensive line and wide receiver group to be too much to overcome and for the Ravens to lean heavily on the run game. The Buccaneers are due for some sort of improved performance, but it will not be enough to get past the 4-3 Ravens, who are looking to solidify their divisional lead.
Atlanta Falcons (-4.5) over Carolina Panthers
The Carolina Panthers surprised everyone with their victory over the Buccaneers following the trade of Christian McCaffrey. The Falcons saw their momentum slowed with a 35-17 loss to the Bengals but have exceeded expectations to start the season. Carolina is 2-7 against the spread in their last nine matchups and seems due to come back to earth a little. Last week’s victory was impressive but had more to do with the Buccaneers struggling than themselves playing well. Expect the Falcons to take control and produce a convincing victory.
Minnesota Vikings (-3.5) over Arizona Cardinals
The Vikings are coming into the matchup fresh off their bye week and will look to advance to 6-1 on the season. They also are 10-0 straight up in their last 10 matchups with the Cardinals. While DeAndre Hopkins returned to the lineup to provide Arizona with an offensive boost, the team has struggled to get stops. Expect the Vikings offense to be too much for Arizona and for them to be unable to keep pace with the scoring. Count on a comfortable victory for the Vikings as they continue to pad their playoff resume.
Tennessee Titans (-2) over Houston Texans
The Titans have been an under-the-radar team this year and come in with a 4-2 record and the inside track on the AFC South. Tennessee is 10-1 straight up in their last 11 games against AFC South opponents and 4-1 in their last five matchups with the Texans. Houston has had more positive moments than was expected thus far, but do not have the rushing defense to be able to stop Derrick Henry. Look for the Titans to lean on this heavily and for Tennessee to pick up another victory.
New York Jets (+1.5) over New England Patriots
It will be interesting to see how the quarterback decision plays out this week and for the remainder of the season for the New England Patriots. Bailey Zappe was subbed in after Mac Jones attempted just six passes during their Monday Night loss to the Bears. The Jets enter the matchup with a 5-2 record and have improved their win-streak to four games. Breece Hall tore his ACL last week, which is a hit to their offense, but the Jets have the 10th best scoring defense in the league and have allowed an NFL-best 12.0 points per game in the last three matchups. Expect whichever New England quarterback is under center to struggle and for the Jets to come out on top on what should be a grind-it-out football game.
Miami Dolphins (-3.5) over Detroit Lions
The Dolphins got back in the win column with a 16-10 victory over the Steelers as Tua Tagovailoa made his return to the field. The Lions will be looking to snap a four-game losing streak and have a chance to capitalize on Miami’s poor pass defense. Detroit is 0-8-1 straight up in their last nine games against AFC opponents, and the Dolphins will look to add another notch to the win column as they stay in the playoff mix. Expect this to be the case as Tagovailoa continues to settle back in. The Dolphins have the more talented roster and will pick up the victory in this one as the Lions losing streak extends to five.
Washington Commanders (+3) over Indianapolis Colts
Washington comes into the matchup with a 3-4 record and picked up a notable win over the Packers last week. Matt Ryan has struggled greatly this season, leading the NFL with nine interceptions, and has been benched this week in favor of Sam Ehlinger. The Commanders’ defense has held opponents to 21 points or fewer each of the past three weeks, while the Colts average the third-fewest points on the season. Expect the Commanders defense to get the better of the young quarterback and for Washington to get back to .500 on the season.
Monday Night: Cincinnati Bengals (-3.5) @ Cleveland Browns
The Cincinnati Bengals look to be returning to their contending form and are coming off a 35-17 victory over the Falcons in which Joe Burrow threw for 481 yards and three touchdowns. The Browns continue to lean heavily on Nick Chubb in their offense, and he has produced. Expect him to do some damage against Cincinnati’s injury-riddled defense, but for the Browns to be unable to keep up with the scoring of the Bengals. The momentum appears to be turning on Cincinnati’s season, and this will be and important win to continue in this direction.
Sunday AM in London: Jacksonville Jaguars (-2.5) over Denver Broncos
Each of these teams has lost four straight games and need a change. Russell Wilson is dealing with a hamstring injury, but he should play on Sunday. The Broncos offense has struggled greatly and tallied just two touchdowns in their last 14 quarters of football. While the Jaguars also have flaws, they are 6-4 straight up in their last 10 matchups with Denver. The Jacksonville Jaguars have shown some signs of life this year and has lost each of their last four games by eight points or fewer. Look for them to get on track in this one as the Broncos continue to search for what their identity is.
San Francisco 49ers (-1.5) over Los Angeles Rams
The 49ers added a new offensive weapon last week by trading for Christian McCaffrey, who tallied 10 touches for 62 yards in his debut. The 49ers sit half a game back from the Rams in the standings, so this NFC West matchup will be important for seedings. The Rams are coming off a bye week and had time to game-plan, but the 49ers are the more complete team. Expect the San Francisco defense to cause problems and for this to be the driving force of their victory.
Dallas Cowboys (-10) over Chicago Bears
While the quarterback play of the Patriots may have been the biggest storyline, the Bears Monday Night victory was a notable win. They will face a difficult task against the Cowboys, who come into the matchup at 5-2 and off an impressive 24-6 win in which Dak Prescott returned to his starting role. Chicago leads the NFL in rushing with 181 yards per game but averages just 18.0 points, which ranks 24th. This matchup will be closer than most expect, but expect the Cowboys to pick up another win.
Seattle Seahawks (-3) over New York Giants
It is still not clear what to make of either of these teams. The Giants have mostly looked uninspiring with Saquon Barkley being the only consistent factor on offense. Despite this, they remain 6-1 and riding a four-game victory. The Seahawks are averaging 26.1 points per game, which is the fifth-best rate in the NFL. New York is 1-4 against the spread in their last five games and 2-5 straight up in their last seven matchups with Seattle. Both teams will be looking to make a statement, and there is an argument why you should have faith in either side.
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