NFL Survivor Pool Picks Week 12: It’s Time for the Dolphins, Backed Up by the Commanders

What are our NFL survivor pool picks and strategies heading into Week 12? Here's a rundown of the possibilities and which teams we'd choose.

Are you scouring the Internet or a petrified tree stump for ideal Week 12 NFL Survivor Pool picks? Winging it usually doesn’t get the job done. So, how should we strategize with an eye toward the rest of the season? Let’s talk survivor pool NFL betting strategy, and optimal team picks.

NFL Week 12 Survivor Pool Picks

Picking one team that is a virtual certainty to win each week sounds easy in theory. However, most NFL survivor pool rules dictate that you can’t select the same team twice.

Sometimes it’s best to lock in a nearly guaranteed win. Other times, it’s better to take a chance to preserve safer options for later. Before we get into this week’s picks, let’s walk through last week’s strategy and results.

In Week 11, I advised readers to pick the Buffalo Bills over the Cleveland Browns. I’d saved Buffalo for half a season, waiting for the right moment to recommend them. And this was it.

Because saving them for later didn’t make sense. Road games in Detroit, Chicago, and New England were scary for different reasons. The Jets and Patriots probably won’t be walkovers. And Miami and Cincinnati easily could take them down.

MORE: Week 12 Waiver Wire Pickups

Then there are the injury concerns. We never know when a great team will become merely “good” because of one injury. Josh Allen received a huge scare but was able to play through it. The Bills are still the Bills.

But nothing’s guaranteed, and as the season progresses and our Survivor opponents dwindle, it’s often even more essential to lock in likely wins, rather than stash great teams in the hopes they’ll be healthy enough to help you later.

Oh, and for backup plans, I also recommended the Baltimore Ravens over the Carolina Panthers. Credit the Panthers for hanging tough. Credit Baltimore more for winning despite not playing their best football.

Miami Dolphins

In early September, I sketched out each week’s most favorable matchups. I’ve had the Dolphins circled for Week 12 ever since.

This is a golden matchup this late in the year — an offensive juggernaut against the 1-8-1 Houston Texans. Yes, Houston has rookie standout Dameon Pierce, though Washington effectively shut him down this past weekend. The Texans also have some solid receivers, including second-year pro Nico Collins.

But let’s be real: after scoring more than 21 points only once in their first seven contests, Miami’s exceeded 30 points in each of their last three games. It’s been an incredible display of offensive prowess and sterling execution. This team is locked in.

The recent acquisition of Jeff Wilson Jr. can’t be overstated. When it became clear Chase Edmonds wasn’t the answer, the team was forced to turn to injury-prone 30-year-old Raheem Mostert. In a pinch, the shift worked. But longer term — especially eyeing a deep playoff run — this franchise needed more.

Wilson might end up being the spark that helps push Miami to the AFC East title.

Playing at home is icing on the cake. As some of you know, I lean heavily toward home teams in Survivor, because historically, the odds are unquestionably more favorable. That said, I’d be tempted to take Miami even if they were on the road. The Texans would be fortunate to keep this one within 14 points.

Also, the Dolphins’ remaining schedule isn’t pretty: @49ers, @Chargers, @Bills, Packers, @Patriots, and Jets. Yeah, those are some tough matchups.

So if you’re considering stashing Miami, you might reconsider.

Washington Commanders

If you want a backup option, the high-flying Washington Commanders fit the bill. They get the Atlanta Falcons at home — the same Falcons that just eked by the 3-8 Chicago Bears. Kyle Pitts might or might not have a serious injury. Regardless, Atlanta is punching above their weight class at 5-6.

Meanwhile, Washington finally has a healthy receiving corps to pair with a capable enough backfield. They’ve won five of six games, with their only blemish coming from a last-second loss to the Vikings.

MORE: Taylor Heinicke and the Commanders Are Turning Their Season Around

Atlanta is comfortably beatable through the air, and Taylor Heinicke has probably done enough to keep the more hit-or-miss Carson Wentz at bay when Wentz returns. The Falcons are the right opponent at the right time for a team that’s building confidence.

It’s Washington’s game to lose, and I believe they’re a fantastic bet to win it.


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