NFL Week 12 survivor picks: Toughest week ever?
The most-picked team in survivor was upset for the fourth consecutive week, as the Titans followed in the footsteps of the Bengals (Week 8), Cowboys and Bills (Week 9), and Ravens and Buccaneers (Week 10).
Anyone blessed enough to make it this far now faces a murderer's row of a schedule, which presents the toughest survivor slate that I can remember, dating back many, many years.
There's just one spread over a touchdown this week, with nearly every game featuring close to equal opponents. Let's get nuts.
|Raiders||Cowboys (-7.5)||DAL (7)|
|Panthers||Dolphins (+2)||CAR (4)|
|Falcons||Jaguars (+1)||ATL (4)|
|Bills||Saints (+6)||BUF (3)|
|Titans||Patriots (-6.5)||NE (3)|
|Steelers||Bengals (-4.5)||CIN (3)|
|Buccaneers||Colts (+3)||TB (3)|
|Seahawks||Washington (-1)||WFT (3)|
|Browns||Ravens (-3.5)||BAL (3)|
|Bears||Lions (+3)||CHI (2)|
|Jets||Texans (-2.5)||NYJ (1)|
|Vikings||49ers (-3)||MIN (1)|
|Eagles||Giants (+3.5)||PHI (1)|
|Chargers||Broncos (+2.5)||LAC (1)|
|Rams||Packers (-1)||LAR (1)|
1. Cowboys (vs. Raiders)
Odds are you've used the Cowboys by now, so I'm not sure how much help this is, but they're one of the only teams I have actual confidence in this week. It's as much of a sell on the Raiders - a club I'm on record saying is in for a rough second half - as it is buying a bounce-back on Dallas, who will have Tyron Smith back for this one. Stating how big that is for this team would be an understatement, as the Cowboys look so much different with Smith in there at LT.
2. Panthers (@ Dolphins)
A week after fading the Panthers against Washington, I'm back on them here in what I believe will be a great matchup for them. Carolina's strengths (pass rush, secondary) match up perfectly with the Dolphins' weaknesses. I expect the club to exploit a bad Miami OL and put all sorts of pressure on Tua Tagovailoa, who continues to throw to a depleted wide receiving core. The Panthers can win this contest on defense alone.
3. Falcons (@ Jaguars)
There's almost no way I should feel as good about this game as I do - it's a toss-up in every sense of the term. The Falcons have taken care of business against inferior opponents this year, though. Atlanta is good value here to bounce back following a mini-bye against a Jaguars team that remains a complete mess under Urban Meyer, with the stunning upset of Buffalo remaining a true outlier.
4. Bills (@ Saints)
This matchup has moved higher up my list as the week has progressed, largely due to the Saints' injury report - they could be without Alvin Kamara, Ryan Ramczyk, Mark Ingram, and Terron Armstead. I'm low on this Bills team and saw real upset potential here, but it's hard to have much confidence if all four of those guys miss out. Could it finally be Taysom Hill szn in the Bayou?
5. Patriots (vs. Titans)
I mentioned last week how Tennessee had been barely passable on offense since losing Derrick Henry and was due for a stinker. Well, five turnovers and a loss to the Texans certainly qualify. I expect a much better effort from Mike Vrabel's side, but with the injuries they have on offense, it's tough to see anything other than a Patriots win at Foxboro. Still, there's upset potential here.
6. Bengals (vs. Steelers)
Cincinnati hasn't played convincing football in some time, despite what this week's lopsided victory over Las Vegas suggests. The Raiders managed 5.9 yards a play to the Bengals' 4.1, punting with shocking frequency in enemy territory. Now Cincinnati returns home to take on a Steelers team that's been typically dangerous as 'dogs under Mike Tomlin and is getting healthy ahead of this massive divisional showdown. I think the Bengals win, but I say that without any conviction.
7. Buccaneers (@ Colts)
Again, you probably have used the Bucs by now, and this isn't a great time to take them on the off chance you haven't. Vita Vea is on the right side of questionable currently after missing Week 11, and I'd need him to play here to take Tampa with any tangible confidence.
8. Washington (vs. Seahawks)
There's something wrong with the Seahawks. Actually, there's a lot wrong. If you let Russell Wilson cook these days, the best you'll get is a Lean Cuisine microwaved meatloaf. The offensive unit is out of sync, it's down to warm bodies at running back, and everyone's favorite DFS stack in Colt McCoy and Zach Ertz just torched the defense. Now Seattle takes on a rejuvenated Washington offense. Don't look now, but Ron Rivera's squad has deservedly climbed back into the playoff picture.
9. Ravens (vs. Browns)
The Browns are all sorts of a mess right now, and Baker Mayfield clearly isn't healthy. Still, Baltimore's defense remains uninspiring, and Cleveland could be getting significant reinforcements back on both sides of the ball this week, which is enough to give me pause.
10. Bears (@ Lions)
Anyone who saw Andy Dalton stumble his way through a 41-17 loss on Thanksgiving last year has an excuse for lacking confidence in his ability to guide the Bears to victory here in Motown. Jared Goff is likely back for this - anyone is an upgrade on Tim Boyle - and the Lions can realistically run all over this defense en route to their first Thanksgiving Day victory since 2016.
Alex Moretto is theScore's supervising editor of sports betting. Find him on Twitter @alexjmoretto.
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