Week 9 NFL Survivor Pool Picks: How to Navigate a Thin Week of Options
Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel (19) and wide receiver Kendrick Bourne (84).
- NFL survivor pool options are thin in Week 9.
- Travis Reed uses his model to determine the smartest picks to keep you alive through Week 9.
Last week was another boring NFL slate. Sure, there were exciting plays and still a few games that came down to the wire, but in terms of survivor pools, a whole lot of nothing. Every favorite won in Week 8 except for the Bears, who probably should have.
For a few weeks now, we have seen a large percentage of entrants move through to the next round due to lack of upsets. The Colts taking out the Chiefs in Week 5 knocked out around 20% of entrants, but just a handful have lost since.
This is fine for our strategy of being contrarian and having different options as the season goes along. Looking ahead, it sets up rather nicely, which we’ll talk about later.
Is this the week we finally get a big upset that sends a shockwave through survivor pools? Let’s find out.
Here are the projected win percentages for the remainder of the season.
Normally, I look for teams that have a projected win percentage of 70% or higher. This week has only one option even though the current betting market may disagree.
Here are the five best options for Week 9:
Buffalo is the team with the highest projected win percentage as it hosts Washington. Only 16% of players are taking the Bills, as many already used them when they hosted the Dolphins two weeks ago.
The Jets are an interesting proposition because they play the Dolphins, but New York has looked like garbage the past two weeks. Is this the Jets team that beat the Cowboys or the Jets team that looked lost against the Jaguars?
The 49ers are the popular pick on Thursday Night Football. They make the short trip to Arizona coming off a 51-13 shellacking of the Panthers.
There are not a lot of opportunities to use Seattle despite how impressive it has looked thus far. The Seahawks’ upcoming schedule is brutal and they face only one team with a losing record the rest of the way (vs. Arizona in Week 16).
It’s deja vu for the Cowboys all over again. They are touchdown favorites on the road heading to MetLife Stadium and my model thinks they are overvalued.
In fact, the Cowboys have nearly the same projected win percentage as they did in Week 6 against the Jets.
The Pick: Buffalo Bills
I am not just taking the Bills because they own the highest percentage on the board, but also how this pick sets up my entries going forward.
The only other time I would use Buffalo is in Week 11 when it goes to Miami. This was my original plan when I saved Buffalo the first go-round with the Dolphins. But the Bills aren’t the best play in a couple of weeks.
The 49ers play the Cardinals again in just a couple of weeks, this time with home-field advantage. The Bills this week, and the 49ers in Week 11, both figure to be contrarian plays and we are actually in the better spot both times.