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NFL picks, Week 11: Straight up, and considering Survivor pool strategy

We’re back with more NFL picks, including a look at Week 10 straight up picks, a Survivor pool, and a look at Thursday Night Football against the spread.

It’s bye week time! The San Francisco 49ers are on the sideline for Week 11, getting rested and ready for their big Week 12 home game against the Seattle Seahawks. The 49ers are not going to the playoffs, but the game offers a few things to consider.

First, they are coming off their first win. That’s something to build on, even if the New York Giants are an awful football team. Second, they’ll likely be getting injured players back. Tank Carradine is eligible to come off injured reserve next week, and Solomon Thomas could be back from his MCL sprain. Finally, Jimmy Garoppolo. The 49ers have not offered a specific plan on when he will start, but there is a decent chance it happens after the bye. So many storylines!

In the meantime, we get a full week of enjoying other football without really worrying too much about the 49ers. The Browns and Giants are worth watching for draft purposes, but it should be a fairly relaxing football weekend for 49ers fans.

With that in mind, it’s time once again to ponder options in NFL Survivor pools. I was knocked out of my own double elimination pool thanks to back-to-back picks of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Denver Broncos in Weeks 6 and 7. That ended ... poorly.

In a Survivor pool, you pick a different team each week. You can only pick a team once. If your team wins you stay alive. I have set it up so you get two strikes. If you lose once, you get another chance. If you lose twice, you’re out. Once you pick a team, you can no longer pick them this season.

I’m out of my pool, but I’m down to offer some strategy for your pool. The most popular call by a long shot will be the Kansas City Chiefs over the New York Giants. It’s a road game, but the Giants are atrocious and seem to have given up. That’s a safe pick. Another likely big pick will be the Jacksonville Jaguars. They travel to face the Cleveland Browns. While I’ll be rooting like crazy for the Browns, I am not holding my breath. One last option would be the New Orleans Saints at home against Washington. The Saints defense is looking for real, as is their run game. They are going to give the Philadelphia Eagles a run for their money come playoff time.

Tonight, things get going with a pretty solid matchup between the Tennessee Titans and Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday Night Football. The 7-2 Steelers are a touchdown favorite against the 6-3 Titans, according to Odds Shark. They each lead their respective divisions, although Tennessee is in a tie with Jacksonville. Pittsburgh has a three-game lead over Baltimore. Tennessee could give Pittsburgh some trouble, but I like the Steelers much more at home than on the road. I’m going to lay the points with Pittsburgh.

Who are you taking?

Titans @ Steelers: Steelers
Lions @ Bears: Bears
Jaguars @ Browns: Jaguars
Ravens @ Packers: Ravens
Buccaneers @ Dolphins: Dolphins
Rams @ Vikings: Rams
Washington @ Saints: Saints
Chiefs @ Giants: Chiefs
Cardinals @ Texans: Texans
Bills @ Chargers: Chargers
Bengals @ Broncos: Broncos
Patriots vs. Raiders: Raiders
Eagles @ Cowboys: Eagles
Falcons @ Seahawks: Seahawks