For the second straight week, the Chiefs are the top survivor pool pick, so Week 10 is a good time to use them if you haven’t already done so.
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1. Kansas City Chiefs (vs. Arizona)
The Cardinals are coming off their bye week, but it’s very hard to see them beating the Chiefs in Arrowhead. Even if Sammy Watkins (foot) is out, Patrick Mahomes, Kareem Hunt, Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, and the rest of Kansas City’s offense won’t be beaten by a two-win team with a rookie quarterback under-center. This might be the upset of the year if the Chiefs lose.
2. Atlanta Falcons (@ Cleveland)
With three straight wins including a convincing 38-14 blowout against the Redskins last week, the Falcons are hot. Cleveland’s defense suffered a couple of season-ending injuries to two of their better players, which is going to make it even more difficult to stop an elite offensive attack. Next week against the Cowboys might also be a good time to use the Falcons as a lock, though.
3. New England Patriots (@ Tennessee)
There are still matchups with the Jets (twice), Dolphins, and Bills left on New England’s schedule, so you can still wait longer if you haven’t used Brady and Belichick to live another week in your survivor pool yet. However, they look like a very good bet for Week 10, as the Titans probably don’t have the firepower to beat them.
4. Green Bay Packers (vs. Miami)
The Packers would be higher with a matchup against Brock Osweiler and the Dolphins, but it’s just been that type of season for Green Bay to this point, where a loss against a team that’s over .500 (unlike the Packers) might not be that surprising. However, the game is in Lambeau Field, so they should have a good chance of getting a needed win.
5. Los Angeles Chargers (@ Oakland)
Maybe the Raiders used their mini bye to get some things figured out on both sides of the ball, but it appears unlikely after the way they played last Thursday night. Also, the Chargers won pretty handily in their first matchup of the season about a month ago, and they’ve won another three games since then while the Raiders have gone in the total opposite direction.
6. Philadelphia Eagles (vs. Dallas)
The Eagles are great at home, they’re coming off the bye, and Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee is out with a hamstring injury. They should be a safe pick to win and basically knock the Cowboys out of the NFC East race. Philadelphia isn’t higher because there’s something about a divisional game with a team that has its back against the wall, making it a slightly riskier lock.
7. New Orleans Saints (@ Cincinnati)
A road game—for a dome team that plays better at home—against a team off the bye is cause for concern, but the Saints are too good not to feel optimistic about their chances of winning an eighth consecutive game. Cincinnati’s defense is likely going to need their best effort of the season to pull off the upset as home dogs.
8. New York Jets (vs. Buffalo)
While many people expect the Jets to dominate against a Nathan Peterman-led Bills team (assuming Josh Allen doesn’t return from his elbow injury), this is the type of game you might want to stay away from as your lock, as it could turn into a defensive battle that can go either way. Still, Josh McCown should take better care of the ball than Peterman, so the Jets aren’t a bad pick.