NFL Survivor League: Three Teams To Pick (And Avoid) Entering Week 4

The Bills are a lock, but the Saints may present a better tactical play


September 29, 2021

You’ve done it again, football fans — because if you’re reading this, it’s likely you’re headed to Week 4 in your respective NFL survivor league.

We mentioned last week about the different game plans when playing in a NFL survivor league, but it’s important to rehash. For example, are you someone who plays for the short term? The long term? Or are you someone who goes about it in more of a contrarian style in hopes of one betting favorite being upset and thus eliminating the masses?

It’s a personal preference, for sure, and we’re probably a bit of a hybrid — as you’ll be able to tell with our selections this week.

Of note, all three of our teams to consider earned wins last week, while two of the teams we said to stay away from — including the Kansas City! — were handed a loss. Of course, if you advanced because of the Baltimore Ravens, you had heroic kicker Justin Tucker to thank a lot more than us.

Anyway, here are three teams to pick and three others to avoid entering Week 4 of your NFL survivor league. All betting lines are courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Three teams to pick
Buffalo Bills (-16, -1125)
Opponent: vs. Houston Texans
To use the Bills or not to use the Bills is the biggest question for those in survivor leagues entering Week 4. This is by far the most confident survivor pick. But that doesn’t mean it’s the best tactical play seeing how the Bills have the Jets twice (Weeks 8, 18) and both the Jaguars (Week 7) and Falcons (Week 17) on their schedule. Still, if you’re someone who plays for the short term then go with the definite — and the Bills are the definite.

New Orleans Saints (-8, -365)
Opponent: vs. New York Giants
The Giants are a down team that now will be without starting linebacker Blake Martinez with wideouts Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton likely to miss Week 4 after suffering hamstring injuries. It doesn’t leave the Giants, who have the league’s second worst offense in both points and yards, much on that side of the ball. And in regards to the Saints, unlike the Bills, you would have to wait until Week 13 against the Jets for New Orleans to present the same value they do in Week 4.

Cincinnati Bengals (-7.5, -350)
Opponent: vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Admittedly, this is a bit of a contrarian pick. I mean, have you ever considered using the Bengals in a survivor league? Still, Cincinnati presents an interesting choice this week specifically because it feels like fading Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars on a short week seems to be a pretty realistic decision. The 2-1 Bengals have another decent matchup against the Jets in Week 8, but this is one of your best chances to use them — and thus keep a playoff team in your pocket for another week.

Honorable mention: (-8) Tennessee Titans at New York Jets

Three teams to avoid
Dallas Cowboys (-4, -195)
Opponent: vs. Carolina Panthers
The Cowboys looked dominant against the Eagles on “Monday Night Football,” but the 3-0 Panthers — even without running back Christian McCaffrey — present a different challenge. This could come down to the wire, and we know the Cowboys will have better matchups down the road with the Giants (Week 5, Week 15) and Falcons (Week 10).

Chicago Bears (-3, -145)
Opponent: vs. Detroit Lions
The Bears looked absolutely dreadful in their first start with Justin Fields behind center and should not provide any confidence for moneyline bettors or those in pick ’em leagues. The Lions, on the other hand, were a historic 66-yard field goal away from beating the Ravens in Week 3.

Los Angeles Chargers (-3.5, -190)
Opponent: vs. Las Vegas Raiders
We recommended not using the Kansas City Chiefs last week because the Chargers are loaded with talent. We’re now recommending opting out of the Chargers as the 3-0 Raiders have been finding ways to win with two overtime victories. We have LA circled as a potential Week 14 (Giants) or Week 16 (Texans) pick.

Honorable mention: (-3) San Francisco 49ers vs. Seattle Seahawks

The Week 4 pick? New Orleans Saints
Record: 3-0

Teams used: San Francisco 49ers (Week 1), Cleveland Browns (Week 2), Denver Broncos (Week 3)

Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images

Picked For You