The 2021 NFL season has provided some crazy outcomes. But something that has become clear as of late is to not trust the Dallas Cowboys. They have lost three of their last four games, with their lone win during that time coming against the Atlanta Falcons. So even though the New Orleans Saints are banged up and Taysom Hill is getting his first start of the season, trusting the Cowboys in a survivor pool is not smart. With the Cleveland Browns, Green Bay Packers, Tennessee Titans, and Carolina Panthers all enjoying a bye this week, here are some NFL Week 13 survivor league top picks.
Top Picks for NFL Week 13 Survivor League
Arizona Cardinals at Chicago Bears
The Arizona Cardinals had a bye in Week 12 so they will get an extra week of preparation for this game. They also might see some key players return from injuries. Kyler Murray might be back this week and while the Cardinals have gone 2-1 with Colt McCoy under center, getting Murray back would make the Cardinals an even more formidable team. Arizona might also get one of, if not the best, receivers in the league, in DeAndre Hopkins, back this week too.
While the Chicago Bears defense has been good this season (allowing 23.1 points per game), the Cardinals defense, which is allowing 18.4 points per game (fourth in the league), is better. And Chicago’s offense ranks near the bottom of the NFL in points per game (16.3) while Arizona’s is ranked fifth (28.2 points per game).
The Bears just aren’t a very good team. If Murray is still out, this game could be closer, but McCoy has proven he can help Arizona beat teams that are better than the Bears. If both Murray and Hopkins return, this should be a fairly easy victory for the Cardinals.
Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans
Sure, the Houston Texans have had some confusing performances this season, but ultimately, they are a bad team. These two teams previously faced off this season in Week 6 and the Indianapolis Colts won very comfortably, 31-3. While the Colts are coming off a disappointing loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Bucs are better than the Texans in every phase of the game. And so are the Colts.
The Texans run defense is the second-worst in the league (allowing 135.6 yards per game). Jonathan Taylor, who has 16 total touchdowns this season and is averaging 5.8 yards per carry, should have another huge day rushing the ball. When these teams met in Week 6, Taylor had 14 carries for 145 yards and two touchdowns. It should be more of the same this week. And while Carson Wentz has made some head-scratching decisions and throws, he should not have any issues against the Texans.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons
The preseason talk was all bout the Buccaneers trying to repeat as Super Bowl champions and if they could actually go undefeated (there was no way that was happening). After two straight losses in Weeks 8 and 10 (how did they lose to the Washington Football Team after their bye week?) the Bucs got back on track and put up two straight wins. In those two games Tampa Bay averaged 34 points with Antonio Brown still sidelined with an injury.
The Atlanta Falcons have lost three of their last five games and their Week 12 win was a seven-point victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. That does not instill a lot of confidence. They are also still missing Calvin Ridley. The Bucs already took care of the Falcons, 48-25, in Week 2 in Tampa Bay when Tom Brady threw five touchdowns and Matt Ryan had three interceptions. Yes, this week’s game is in Atlanta but Tom Brady and the Bucs playing in a dome will help their potent offense. The Falcons defense will not be able to make enough stops to keep their team in the game.
Los Angeles Rams Versus Jacksonville Jaguars
After looking like one of the best teams in the league, the Los Angeles Rams have lost three straight games. But in taking a look back over their schedule, the Rams have largely accumulated their wins against bad teams, save for wins against the Bucs and Colts in Weeks 2 and 3, and lost to good teams. The Jaguars are definitely not a quality team.
There have been reports that Matthew Stafford has been playing hurt, but he and the Rams offense should be able to put up points against the Jags. And while the Rams defense struggled against the Packers last week, that was the Packers with Aaron Rodgers under center. The Jaguars offense is not in the same zip code as the Packers offense. The Rams defense is a talented unit and they should not have any issues shutting down Jacksonville’s offense, which is ranked second to last in scoring (15.7 points per game). The only team averaging fewer points per contest this season is the Deshaun Watsonless Texans.