Week 4 NFL Pick'em and Survivor Pool Picks
There aren’t as many monster favorites in Week 4, but we do have some intriguing matchups to hopefully find value for pick’em and survivor pools.
With the help of TeamRankings' customizable tools and data, I’ll go over the best value picks for Week 4, along with the top suggestions for survivor pools. With this info, you should be able to make smart decisions in order to get back on track or keep you going if you’ve had a strong start to the season thus far.
Editor’s Note: TeamRankings subscribers win football pools three times as often as expected, thanks to customized picks designed for your pool's size and rules. No one else does it.
Week 3 Recap
My picks went 4-1 last week, with the Panthers, Broncos, Titans and Raiders all beating their respective opponents. Only the Patriots let me down after a pretty gross loss to the Jekyll-and-Hyde Saints.
This brings my season total to 9-6. Let’s move forward to Week 4, where hopefully we find success in both pick'em and survivor formats.
Pick'em Pool Breakdown
Before I get into the picks, note that I’m not suggesting you should make all of the picks listed below. The best Week 4 picks for your NFL pool depend on strategy factors such as your pool’s size, rules and prize structure, plus situational factors like your current place in the standings and the number of weeks remaining.
However, these picks do provide some of the best opportunities to differentiate your Week 4 picks from your pool opponents, by taking on only a modest amount of risk, or no additional risk at all.
Buffalo Bills vs. Texans
The game has the Bills projected to win by 16 points (that’s not a typo) at home against a struggling Houston team. TeamRankings has their odds of winning at 89%, with Vegas coming in with 91% in favor of Buffalo.
This will be the first road game for rookie Davis Mills, and a tall order against the Bills defense. The public agrees that this should be a blowout, and are backing Buffalo 99% of the time, which means you’ll win or lose with the bulk of your pool.
Tennessee Titans @ Jets
Sadly, what we thought was going to be a revamped and exciting Jets team has turned out to be another version of a bad thing. Rookie QB Zach Wilson may get them going at some point this season, but I don’t think it’s this week against the Titans. Tennessee has had its own share of issues so far in 2021, but they should get it done in New York this week on the back of King Derrick Henry.
New Orleans Saints vs. Giants
This contest has the second-highest spread of the week (7.5) along with three other matchups, but the Saints boast the largest win odds of the group at 78%. New Orleans is finally playing in their home stadium after three straight road games due to issues from Hurricane Ida.
Los Angeles Rams vs. Cardinals
This tilt features two undefeated teams, with the Rams favored at home by 4.5 points. The Rams offense is playing lights out, and while Kyler Murray also has the Arizona offense humming, it will be more difficult for him to move the ball this week in Los Angeles
Only 87% of bettors are currently taking the Rams here, so there is some value in this pick.
Dallas Cowboys vs. Panthers
Yes, the Panthers are undefeated but they haven’t been truly tested yet and will be without star RB Christian McCaffrey for this contest. The Dallas defense did a solid job of shutting down Philly last Monday. They should force Sam Darnold into some turnover situations.
Dallas is favored at home by five points, with TeamRankings win odds of 68% and 65% via Vegas. The public is only picking the Cowboys 79% of the time, which presents value compared to similar spread ranges like the Packers (95%) and the Rams (87%).
Survivor Picks for Week 4
Win Odds: Top 5 Week 4 Picks
Stating the obvious here, but higher is better when it comes to win odds. Everything else being equal, you want to pick the team with the best likelihood of making it through.
Here are the five safest teams this week, according to the TeamRankings Data Grid model (chances to win in parentheses):
- Buffalo Bills vs. Texans (91%, 16-point favorites)
- New Orleans Saints vs. Giants (77%, 7.5-point favorites)
- Tennessee Titans @ Jets (76%, 7-point favorites)
- Cincinnati Bengals vs. Jaguars (76%, 7.5-point favorites)
- Kansas City Chiefs @ Eagles (74%, 7.5-point favorites)
Diversifying your survivor picks from the crowd is an advantageous strategy, as the pool winnings can increase significantly if your pick hits and another popular pick loses.
Here are the five most popular survivor picks for Week 4 (referencing Data Grid mentioned earlier):
- Buffalo Bills vs. Texans (37%)
- Tennessee Titans @ Jets (25%)
- Cincinnati Bengals vs. Jaguars (15%)
- New Orleans Saints vs. Giants (11%)
- Kansas City Chiefs @ Eagles (4%)
The last piece of the survivor pool puzzle is future value. If you fire off a powerful team in Week 4, you won’t be able to use them later.
According to TeamRankings, here are the top five teams in future value entering this week for a 100-entry standard rules pool:
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7.8)
- Buffalo Bills (6.5)
- Los Angeles Rams (4.3)
- Kansas City Chiefs (3.2)
- San Francisco 49ers (2.8)
Note: The numbers in parentheses are a proprietary rating of future value found in the TeamRankings Data Grid, which is also impacted by factors such as pool size.
TeamRankings has released a book on Survivor Pool Strategy, check out the e-version by clicking here.