Eliminator Pool: Week 7 - Footballguys

Footballguys.com Staff Pick One Team to Win Each Week in a Eliminator / Survivor Pool Format

Over the past few years, we have given the subscribers of Footballguys.com some help in playing office pools, one of the most popular methods to follow the NFL aside from fantasy football leagues. For the past few seasons, the staff members have done the Staff Confidence Pool Challenge, where numerous staffers try and pick the winners each week with a confidence ranking, and Jeff Pasquino’s “For The Win” column where Jeff attempts to pick each and every NFL game against the Las Vegas spread. Both of these have been very popular features, so this year Footballguys is adding a combination of the two called the “Against the Spread” Challenge and also the Eliminator Challenge, where staffers have to pick a team to win each week. Just one? That sounds easy, but here is the catch – you can only pick the team you choose in a given week once all season long. Many contests and pools out there get pretty big, so an Eliminator (or Survivor) Pool can go 16 or 17 weeks.

Jeff Pasquino has provided some insight into this kind of contest with two preseason articles. The first one that describes this kind of contest along with some advice on how to pick a team each week:

Survivor Pool Strategy

The second article is rather interesting, which describes Jeff’s preseason plan to get all the way through 17 weeks. Will it work? We are about to find out.

I Will Survive

This pool will run all season long, but to keep participation up, the pool will crown the staffer with the best W-L record for the season (which means that everyone in the pool will continue to make picks every week).

LAST WEEK'S RESULTS

NFL Week 6 was a clean week, with the staff focusing on three favorites - Minnesota (four picks), Houston (six) and Green Bay (six). All three did win, but it was a close call for both Houston (20-13 over Buffalo) and Green Bay (33-30). The staff all improved by one victory, but things will continue to get more and more complicated with fewer high-quality choices each week (foreshadowing). Now let us take a look at the picks for Week 7.

THIS WEEK'S PICK SUMMARY

Here are the picks for this week:

Staff Member
Record
Wk01
Wk02
Wk03
Wk04
Wk05
Wk06
Wk07
Wk08
Wk09
Wk10
Wk11
Wk12
Wk13
Wk14
Wk15
Wk16
Wk17
Devin Knotts
6-0
BAL
DEN
CLE
LAC
NE
MIN
ATL
Aaron Rudnicki
5-1
BAL
LAR
MIN
GB
CAR
HOU
LAC
Andy Hicks
5-1
BAL
LAR
MIN
LAC
NE
GB
PHI
Ari Ingel
5-1
BAL
LAR
MIN
JAC
NE
GB
LAC
Dave Larkin
5-1
BAL
NO
JAC
LAC
CAR
MIN
IND
Jeff Haseley
5-1
BAL
LAR
MIN
LAC
NE
GB
ATL
Mark Wimer
5-1
BAL
LAR
MIN
LAC
NO
GB
ATL
Matt Bitonti
5-1
NE
DEN
MIN
LAC
CAR
GB
ATL
Jeff Pasquino
5-1
NO
LAR
PHI
LAC
CAR
HOU
IND
Alessandro Miglio
4-2
NO
LAR
KC
JAC
DEN
MIN
ATL
Bear Heiser
4-2
NO
LAR
KC
ATL
LAC
HOU
MIN
James Brimacombe
4-2
NO
LAR
MIN
GB
CIN
HOU
LAC
William Grant
4-2
NO
SF
MIN
LAC
NE
HOU
LAR
Sean Settle
3-3
NO
LAC
JAC
NE
DEN
HOU
LAR
Justin Howe
3-3
NO
LAC
JAC
GB
TEN
MIN
LAR
Andrew Garda
2-4
DET
BAL
HOU
SEA
TEN
GB
LAR

DISCUSSION

The picks are in for Week 7, and we are back to the staff being all over the place with their selections. Six NFL franchises were selected this week, which makes sense given that six teams have all been used by everyone and teams cannot be used twice. With only the Colts and Rams as big favorites this week (more than a touchdown) and just a handful close (Chargers, Chiefs and Atlanta all roughly -6.5 favorites). The top choice this week are those Falcons as Atlanta hosts the Giants on Monday Night Football. Despite all the injury woes and a 2-4 record, five of the staff chose Atlanta at home over the Giants, which does seem like a solid choice this week. The Rams were next with four picks as they visit the 49ers, which could be a little closer than the double-digit spread that Las Vegas has put out for this contest. A divisional matchup is always tricky, and a road favorite against a team that nearly pulled a big upset of Green Bay on the road on Monday should give some pause of taking the Rams in this spot. The other Los Angeles team comes in next with three votes as the Chargers take on Tennessee in London. The Chargers were wise enough to stay in Cleveland after their Week 6 win and then fly directly from Ohio to London for this matchup. The Titans were just shut out at home by the Ravens, while the Chargers are undefeated against teams not named Chiefs or Rams this year. The only other team with more than one vote this week are those heavily favorited Colts team, with both yours truly (Jeff Pasquino) and Dave Larkin going with Indianapolis. More on that selection in my commentary below. Week 7 rounds out with two unique picks as Bear Heiser took Minnesota (at the Jets) and Andy Hicks went with the Eagles home against Carolina. Both teams are favorites this week and the Jets are running out of wide receivers, while the Eagles looked very good last Thursday against the Giants. With so many different selections this could be a big week for moves in the standings, so check back next week to see how it plays out.

Please note a few things: We will be doing these picks every week, win or lose, to keep it entertaining all season long. Normally a Survivor/Eliminator pool would end once all but one player lost once, but to provide our subscribers with more perspectives, everyone will pick every week even if they lose. That said, we will still try and honor the spirit of an Eliminator / Survivor Pool, trying to win every week and not re-use any teams during the year.

COMMENTARY

Each week, contestants are invited to submit any comments that they might have about their picks. If they submit them early enough, we post them with the article. If not, the comments will be within the section below.

Jeff Pasquino: Going back to my preseason plan, I clearly underestimated the Bears. I had Chicago as an improving team, but taking New England on the road in this spot is not where I wanted to go this week at all. Las Vegas backed that up with a tight point spread (Chicago +3 at home), which screams like a trap game for the Patriots. A Chicago win here would not be a surprise at all. Instead, Week 7 feels like the week to try and steal the week and save teams for the back half of the year. With the Colts big favorites at home against a Buffalo team starting a quarterback who was not even on the squad two weeks ago feels like a good shot at a win. The Money Line for Indianapolis is floating around -340 to -360, giving Indianapolis a 77-78% chance of winning on Sunday. Everything points to using Indianapolis, so that is where I went this week. Cross your fingers and hope that Vegas gets this one right.

The Pick: Indianapolis Colts

Good luck this weekend!

Questions, suggestions, and comments are always welcome to pasquino@footballguys.com


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