NFL Eliminator Challenge – WEEK 5

Welcome to Week Five, season nine, of our NFL Eliminator Challenge series!  For those of you who are new to our series, we follow four simple steps to make our picks.  While these are not hard rules (more like guidelines and suggestions), they have historically worked out well for us in the past.  We are happy to have you join our eliminator community and feel free to hit me up on twitter to give me your thoughts!

Step 1 – Avoid Division Matchups

While there weren’t necessarily division upsets that blew people’s minds last week, we did get some surprises.  Many thought the Rams were becoming the team to beat in L.A., but the Cardinals came to town and absolutely humiliated them in front of their home crowd.  Then, another hot team from Las Vegas came to L.A. Monday night but wasn’t as lucky.  The upsets are coming, just get ready!

Every single year, one of the top teams gets upset by an underdog division rival.  The problem is, you never know when it is going to happen.  Unless you can predict the future, I recommend avoiding these division matchups:

  • Los Angeles Rams @ Seattle Seahawks
  • Detroit Lions @ Minnesota Vikings
  • Tennessee Titans @ Jacksonville Jaguars
  • New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys
  • San Francisco 49ers @ Arizona Cardinals
Step 2 – Avoid Marquee Matchups

The streak continues!  We now have four weeks in a row where at least one prime time game has been decided by less than a field goal.  First on Thursday night, we had the Bengals and Jaguars game get decided by a field goal.  Then on Sunday night, we had a thriller as the Bucs squeaked one out, beating the Patriots by only two in New England.  Monday night may not have been the best matchup, but two out of three isn’t half bad!

For whatever reason, when primetime hits, some teams rise to the occasion while others shrink in the bright lights. Unless you want to take a chance, I would avoid the below marquee games:

  • Los Angeles Rams @ Seattle Seahawks
  • Buffalo Bills @ Kansas City Chiefs
  • Indianapolis Colts @ Baltimore Ravens
Step 3 – Avoid Picking Against Home Field Advantage

While home team victories were actually in the minority last week (only seven teams won in front of their home crowds), we did have one of the bigger upsets of the week.  The New York Jets, winless and hosting a Titans team missing their two best receivers, took advantage in front of their home crowd, taking the Titans into overtime and pulling out the win.  While it wasn’t pretty, home field advantage came up strong in that one.

While home field advantage may not be what it used to be, the stress behind travel and being out of your comfort zone is still a real thing and something you should be careful with.  Be aware and avoid the below games where the favorite is the away team:

  • Los Angeles Rams @ Seattle Seahawks
  • Green Bay Packers @ Cincinnati Bengals
  • New Orleans Saints @ Washington Football Team
  • Tennessee Titans @ Jacksonville Jaguars
  • New England Patriots @ Houston Texans
Step 4 – Make your pick!
My pick of the week is:
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers over the Miami Dolphins

As much as it hurts to type this, the Dolphins have looked really bad this season.  With Tua still missing in action, I don’t think the Dolphins have the firepower on offense to come close to matching what Tom Brady and the Bucs are about to do to them.  This one should be a blowout.

 An alternate option I like this week:

  • Carolina Panthers over the Philadelphia Eagles

While the Panthers lost a tough game last week, this team is ready to compete and with CMC possibly back for next week and they should be able to beat an Eagles team that has been uneven throughout the start of this season.  While I expect this one to be close, I do think Carolina pulls it out in front of their home crowd.

Rule breaker pick of the week:

  •  New England Patriots over the Houston Texans

While the Patriots may be 1-3 on the season, they are a missed field goal away from beating the Bucs and a late fumble away from beating the Dolphins.  This team is much better than their record shows and the Texans seem to be already playing for 2022 based on their performance last week.  I expect the Patriots to take their frustration out on Houston this week, despite playing on the road.

Last Week’s Record = 1-2 ☹

Season Record = 9-3

Follow me on twitter and let me know what you think of this week’s picks @DE_aaron!

Thanks for reading!

TRENDING
GET UPDATES

Stay up to date with the latest
Fake Pigskin fantasy news,
updates and exclusive offers!