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NFL Week 13 Survivor Pool Analysis, Picks & Percentages: Pencil in Your Final 5 Weeks

NFL Week 13 Survivor Pool Analysis, Picks & Percentages: Pencil in Your Final 5 Weeks article feature image

Ethan Miller/Getty Images. Pictured: Derek Carr (#4) leads the Raiders out of the tunnel.

There are just five weeks remaining in the NFL regular season and this is the point in time where winning your survivor pool becomes a realistic outcome.

This is also the point in the season where absolutes aren’t realistic. Giving out a single pick doesn’t make sense because everyone reading this is in a unique situation.

Some of you have a handful of people left to beat. Some of you still have hundreds of entries fighting for the top prize. And everyone will have different options remaining.

So if I say something like “The Vikings aren’t a good play this week,” that is true in the general sense, but in your situation they could be the best play this week.

You should have your final five weeks penciled in for who you are going to take. With the new playoff format, we could have fewer teams resting in Week 17 than in previous years but you still want to have some backup plans for the final week.

To help map out those plans, here are the projected win percentages for the rest of the season.

Week 13 Survivor Pool Winning Percentages

Here are the best options for Week 13, how often they are projected to be picked and their expected value.


Team Pick % Model EV
Ravens 1.5% 88.5% 1.34
Dolphins 8.5% 86.1% 1.27
Chiefs 6.9% 84.3% 1.23
Steelers 2.7% 78.6% 1.17
Raiders 32.3% 75.9% 0.96
Seahawks 13.8% 73.8% 0.98
Vikings 27.7% 70.5% 0.90

There are three teams with a win percentage over 80% and none of the three are expected to get even 10% of picks. This is likely because people have already used them up, not because they are saving them for later.

The best of these three options is the Dolphins. If you somehow didn’t use them either time against the Jets, now is the time to take Miami.

This is the easiest projected game remaining for the Chiefs with home games against the Falcons and Chargers as their other remaining options. If you have Kansas City left, I’d feel comfortable using them now unless your Weeks 16 and 17 options look really poor.

This is also the easiest projected game for the Ravens (the simulation assumes Lamar Jackson is back) but they have two other games with a projected win percentage of 80% or more.

Taking the Ravens this week really depends on your five-week plan. It’s fine to take them now but not at the expense of taking a 60% chance later.

For the majority of you, all of that analysis is nice but does not apply. You have already used those teams above and you are in this next tier.

While the Steelers have a higher EV than the other teams in this group. I would have no problem saving them for later and using another team such as the Raiders.

This applies especially to those of you in smaller pools that are near the end. With fewer entries remaining, the focus should become more on maximizing win percentage and less about fading what the other people are doing.

This doesn’t mean you should ignore pick percentages completely. If you can ascertain that most of your pool is going to take Minnesota, then Las Vegas becomes a high EV play in your situation.

Again, I don’t think giving out a pick or a list of picks is helpful at this point. Your decision should be based on information in your unique pool and you can use the percentages above to make your plan.

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