Survivor: Week 14 Strategy & Picks

Survivor: Week 14 Strategy & Picks

This article is part of our Survivor series.

Last week thinned the herd in Survivor pools. The Jaguars, the most popular pick, were upset by Jake Browning and the Bengals. The Steelers, the third-most popular pick, were upset by the Cardinals. It could have been worse. The Buccaneers, the second-most popular pick, survived the Panthers with a late interception and the Chargers, the fourth-most popular pick, were only slightly less awful than the Patriots, winning 6-0. 

In my pool, 15 of the remaining 18 Survivors were eliminated — nine on Pittsburgh, six on Jacksonville. Of the original 414, three remain (two picked the Bucs last week, the other picked the Rams). 

On to Week 14. 

Ownership percentages below come from Officefootballpools.com. The Vegas Moneyline is the average of the matchup's two moneylines, according to BetMGM. Vegas odds are the percentage chance a team has at winning. Expected Loss is a team's percent-taken multiplied by its chance of losing.

TEAMOPPONENT%TAKEN*VEGAS ML**VEGAS ODDSEXPECTED LOSS
PackersGIANTS21.9%27073.0%5.92
TexansJETS18.2%22569.2%5.60
STEELERSPatriots15.8%247.571.2%4.55
RAVENSRams13.6%30575.3%3.36
DOLPHINSTitans9.6%67587.1%1.24
SAINTSPanthers9.5%22068.8%2.97
49ERSSeahawks7.1%47582.6%1.23
BROWNSJaguars1.1%16061.5%0.42
FALCONSBuccaneers0.6%12555.6%0.27
VikingsRAIDERS0.6%142.558.8%0.25
BENGALSColts0.4%11052.4%0.19
LionsBEARS0.3%16061.5%0.12
CHARGERSBroncos0.2%137.557.9%0.08
EaglesCowboys0.1%16061.5%0.04
BillsCHIEFS0.1%127.556.0%0.04

Last week thinned the herd in Survivor pools. The Jaguars, the most popular pick, were upset by Jake Browning and the Bengals. The Steelers, the third-most popular pick, were upset by the Cardinals. It could have been worse. The Buccaneers, the second-most popular pick, survived the Panthers with a late interception and the Chargers, the fourth-most popular pick, were only slightly less awful than the Patriots, winning 6-0. 

In my pool, 15 of the remaining 18 Survivors were eliminated — nine on Pittsburgh, six on Jacksonville. Of the original 414, three remain (two picked the Bucs last week, the other picked the Rams). 

On to Week 14. 

Ownership percentages below come from Officefootballpools.com. The Vegas Moneyline is the average of the matchup's two moneylines, according to BetMGM. Vegas odds are the percentage chance a team has at winning. Expected Loss is a team's percent-taken multiplied by its chance of losing.

TEAMOPPONENT%TAKEN*VEGAS ML**VEGAS ODDSEXPECTED LOSS
PackersGIANTS21.9%27073.0%5.92
TexansJETS18.2%22569.2%5.60
STEELERSPatriots15.8%247.571.2%4.55
RAVENSRams13.6%30575.3%3.36
DOLPHINSTitans9.6%67587.1%1.24
SAINTSPanthers9.5%22068.8%2.97
49ERSSeahawks7.1%47582.6%1.23
BROWNSJaguars1.1%16061.5%0.42
FALCONSBuccaneers0.6%12555.6%0.27
VikingsRAIDERS0.6%142.558.8%0.25
BENGALSColts0.4%11052.4%0.19
LionsBEARS0.3%16061.5%0.12
CHARGERSBroncos0.2%137.557.9%0.08
EaglesCowboys0.1%16061.5%0.04
BillsCHIEFS0.1%127.556.0%0.04

Home teams in CAPS
* According to "polling" data on Officefootballpools.com 
** Average of the two moneylines

Miami, San Francisco and Baltimore are probably long gone for most (if not, take one of those, obviously), so that leaves the likes of Green Bay, Pittsburgh, Houston, New Orleans and Detroit, with no obvious pot-odds play available.

While we don't encourage looking ahead early in the season, it's time to start checking future matchups. For example, if the 49ers are still available, you might want to save them for next week against the Cardinals.

Also, check which teams your opponents have available and make an educated guess as to who will be picked; the percentage-taken numbers above are noisy this time of year and might starkly deviate from your pool. So, gameplan it out. Hopefully, you can glean approximate ownership numbers and find a pot-odds play to win the pool. 

For example, in my pool the three remaining teams have these teams available:

Team A: Green Bay, Pittsburgh, Houston, 

Team B: Green Bay, Pittsburgh, Houston, New Orleans 

Team C: Green Bay, Pittsburgh, Houston

If I'm Team B, I'm taking New Orleans and rooting hard against the other three. 

My lean this week is Houston. But I've been off four weeks in a row, so ... 

If you have a difficult decision or are considering a team not listed below, bring it up in the comments and we'll hash it out. 

Picks below are in order of preference (but after the top three, the rest are fairly interchangeable). 

My Picks

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins welcome a Titans team to Miami whose only win in the last five games was against the Panthers. Easy pick, if available. 

San Francisco 49ers

It's possible the 49ers have a bit of a letdown after last week's huge, emotional wipeout of the Eagles. But the 49ers and Seahawks strongly dislike each other and it's doubtful San Fran won't come out swinging. Give me the 10.5 points, but the 49ers should win at home.

Baltimore Ravens

The Rams have won three in a row, but a trip to Baltimore should end the fun. The Ravens are rolling and coming off a bye. 

Houston Texans

Houston has won four of five, its only loss coming against division-rival Jacksonville. The Texans lost Tank Dell for the season but still have weapons for C.J. Stroud, who as a rookie is among the top QBs in the league — second in TD-INT ratio (4.0), third in YPA (8.5). The Jets are the Jets, losers of their last five in which they averaged nine points per game. Zach Wilson might be back under center this week — a slim upgrade, at best. The only thing going for the Jets is the game is in New York, but that's not enough.

Detroit Lions

The Lions beat the Bears in Week 11 in a game that proved tougher than expected  — they didn't pull ahead until 29 seconds remained. So, this one sets up as a revenge game of sorts, even though the Lions won the last time. The Bears' offense is woeful and they probably didn't find any magic during last week's bye. 

Pittsburgh Steelers

Mitch Trubisky will start for an injured Kenny Pickett this week, and while that would usually be a reason to run the other way, Pittsburgh plays New England, which might be the worst team in the league. The Steelers' offense struggles with Pickett, so with Trubisky it might be an even bigger grind. But the Patriots have their own QB problems and Rhamondre Stevenson is out. New England has scored 13 points total in their last three games, including being shut out by the Chargers last week. (For perspective, the Chargers entered Week 13 allowing 23.5 points per game, 24th in the league.)  It's highly doubtful they'll find their way against a good Steelers defense. 

New Orleans Saints

The Saints are mediocre and this week could be without Derek Carr. But Jameis Winston is probably no worse than Carr (provided he doesn't throw five interceptions), especially against the 1-11 Panthers, who have scored less than 19 points in eight games.

Notable Omission:

Green Bay Packers

The Packers won their last three, the latter two against legit competition (Lions, Chiefs). The Giants won their last two, against non-legit competition (Commanders, Patriots). Green Bay's obviously the better team, but the Giants could give them a game at home on Monday night. Tommy DeVito has been decent and the team is coming off a bye. It's slim pickin's this time of year, but all things being equal, this game gives me a worse feeling than the others.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jason Thornbury
Thornbury is a senior editor at RotoWire. A former newspaper reporter and editor, he has also worked in sports television and radio, including co-hosting RotoWire Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM.
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