NFL Survivor Pool Best Bets: Week 3

When the numbers let you down and two straight teams with 80+% odds let you down, where do you turn? Right back to the numbers again.

I’m A Survivor: Maximize Your Winnings

Most people, when picking for their eliminator pool, just pick the team with the best chance to win that week. The best way to maximize your chances of winning, however, is to make a decision based on what teams other people are picking. If 75% of the population is picking the top game, you stand to gain from picking the second best option. That way, even though both teams are likely to win, if the top team is upset (see: Patriots, Week 2), 75% of the pool has been eliminated and you are still standing. Using every possible combination of game outcomes for the week (65,000+), we tell you who maximizes your potential gains.

And that’s where half my pool went…

That’s something you will only say if your above-ground pool is leaking or the Patriots lose at home against the Cardinals. Between 40% and 50% of all people in survivor pools picked the Patriots in Week 2 and it was a good pick at that. We had the Pats as the top pick to win at 81.8% and Vegas had the money line as high as -1100, which translates to an estimated 91.6% win probability. Random variation strikes again. If you listened to us and took our win-maximizing pick, you would have been sweating while Eli Manning and company eked out another comeback victory. That’s exactly why it’s important to take into account the picks of the population. When that rare “Any Given Sunday” upset occurs, you stand to benefit greatly from the opinions of the masses. Hopefully we helped and you are alive in your pool while the majority of people were eliminated after Gostkowski’s kick sailed wide.

Week 3's Top Picks

Dallas over Tampa Bay (77.7% Win Probability)
Dallas looked shaky against Seattle to say the least, but playing at home against a weak Tampa Bay team should be as close to a lock as you will find this week.

New Orleans over Kansas City (73.6% Win Probability)
Isn’t it about time New Orleans got their first win?

Pittsburgh over Oakland (71.1% Win Probability)
Oakland got beat down by Miami last week. Steelers are favored heavily, even on the road.

This week’s most picked teams:
1. Chicago Bears over St. Louis Rams (28.0%)
2. San Francisco 49ers over Minnesota Vikings (17.4%)
3. New Orleans Saints (13.2%)

Who to pick:
Dallas Cowboys (75.32% adjusted win odds)

Full Adjusted Win Odds (Based on population picks)

This Week Adjusted Win Odds
Dallas 75.32%
Pittsburgh 69.15%
New Orleans 67.90%
Philadelphia 64.51%
San Diego 63.78%
Green Bay 60.35%
Indianapolis 58.68%
San Francisco 57.20%
Baltimore 56.20%
Buffalo 55.15%
Miami 55.15%
Detroit 54.61%
New York Giants 54.18%
Houston 53.72%
Chicago 53.51%
Washington 50.89%
Cincinnati 49.11%
St. Louis 46.49%
Denver 46.28%
Carolina 45.82%