Week 14 Survivor Pick Strategy & Advice (2023)

Week 14 gives us five different options with similar popularity in survivor pools, led by the Green Bay Packers.

The Packers are suddenly on a roll and rising in survivor (Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire)

In Week 14, we have five different teams with similar popularity as we enter the week, with no one above 20% but all five at 12% or more. That should make for a week where subtle changes and win odds could control the choices.

In these weekly columns, we explore strategies to maximize your edge in NFL survivor pools, also known as knockout pools or eliminator pools. We also provide some of the rationale behind picks potentially recommended by our product.

We plan to periodically update this post until Sunday of Week 14 arrives. Here’s what’s available now:


Five Most Popular Week 14 Survivor Picks

Here are the most popular teams early on for Week 14 of the 2023 NFL season.

  • Green Bay Packers (17%) at New York Giants
  • Houston Texans (14%) at New York Jets
  • Pittsburgh Steelers (14%) vs. New England Patriots
  • New Orleans Saints (13%) vs. Carolina Panthers
  • Baltimore Ravens (11%) vs. Los Angeles Rams
  • Miami Dolphins (11%) vs. Tennessee Titans

We have a tie for fifth right now, so let’s go through all six.

Miami Dolphins

If you still have them available, they are a great option this week, as the largest favorite on the board.

Everyone Else

Let’s lump everyone else together, because they are in a similar tier in win odds, all between -5 and -7 favorites, with between 69% and 75% market win odds.

Baltimore has the highest relative win odds but also most potential future value, though that is tied up in Week 18. We don’t know what Baltimore’s motivation will be by then. They look like they have a good chance to wrap up the AFC North after the Steelers and Browns both lost to fall two games back, but could also be playing to get the No. 1 seed in the AFC.

New Orleans and Pittsburgh could both be playing with backup quarterbacks, and that has impacted the betting market odds, putting them at the bottom of this tier. So those situations are worth monitoring.

Houston and Green Bay don’t have those QB injury concerns, though both are on the road in New York. Green Bay has the best mix of relative future value and win odds, though things could shift.


Tuesday 12/5

Week 13 Survivor Recap

Three teams had over 20% popularity in Week 13, and the one who saw the odds move the most against them (Tampa Bay) ended up being the only one that survived, as they beat Carolina 21-18. Pittsburgh and Jacksonville both lost, and had their starting quarterbacks knocked out of the game.

Here is a full summary of the most popular picks for Week 13, and the results:

TeamOpponentPopularityResult
JacksonvilleCincinnati32%L 34-31
PittsburghArizona25%L 24-10
Tampa BayCarolina23%W 21-18
LA ChargersNew England9%W 6-0
LA RamsCleveland3%W 36-19
MiamiWashington3%W 45-15
Kansas CityGreen Bay2%L 27-19

Our pick recommendations were even heavier on Jacksonville, making up around half of all pick recommendations for the week, and we were lightest on Tampa Bay, who ended up closing as only a three-point favorite by kickoff. It was a week that wiped out a lot of pools, with the two most popular picks going down. Only about 40% of public picks and 37% or our pick recommendations won in Week 13. For the public, Tampa Bay made up over half of the advancing picks, while the Rams were the most common advancing pick for PoolGenius entries.


FYI

About Our Survivor Pool Advice

We break down the pros and cons of various survivor pick options in this column, but none of our advice is ever absolute.

Why can’t we just tell you the “best” survivor pick of the week? Because there is no universal “best pick” for all NFL survivor pools.

The best weekly pick for your pool depends on a variety of factors, including the number of entries still alive and your pool’s rules. For example:

  • Bigger survivor pools reward more risk-taking.
    The more entries in your pool, the lower the chance you have to win it. In addition, you have a fixed number of weeks to send hundreds (or even thousands, in really big pools) of opponents to slaughter while you survive unscathed. As a result, your best strategy for bigger pools generally demands more of a focus on avoiding the most popular picks.
  • Non-standard rules change optimal pick strategy.
    If your pool requires double picks late in the season, or if it’s a strike pool (i.e. your first incorrect pick doesn’t eliminate you), you don’t want to use the exact same pick strategy that you’d use in a standard-rules survivor pool. Those rule variations significantly influence decision factors, such as whether you should be more inclined to save a good team for later vs. use it now.

And then there’s all this stuff:

  • What if you’ve already picked the team (or teams) that some article says is the best pick this week?
  • What if the point spread for that “best pick” has gotten several points worse since the article was published?
  • How should you spread your picks across multiple teams if you’re playing more than one entry?

Technology to the rescue

As far as we know, we’re the only site that has built algorithms that evaluate all of the strategy factors that matter in survivor pools and provide you with customized survivor pick recommendations based on the data updated multiple times a day.

The result? Since 2017, our subscribers have reported over $5.7 million in survivor pool winnings using our data-driven picks and tools.

If you want to see all the picks we recommend for your pool, use our NFL Survivor Picks product.

As a result, you will see Jacksonville’s EV dropping a bit, and might see their grade lower as well.


Why we write this column

At the same time, we know our subscribers like to understand the rationale behind picks the product may recommend, especially when those picks go against the grain. So, over the years, we’ve started to write more about the “whys” behind our approach.

This column can also help educate our readers about survivor pool strategy. We highlight tactics proven to result in more survivor pool wins over the long term and point out common pitfalls to avoid.

We hope you enjoy reading, and we encourage you to check out more of our survivor pool strategy articles.


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