Survivor Pools aren’t as popular as fantasy football just yet, but they are growing in popularity with each year. Chances are good you have a few friends that are in Survivor Pools, as the temptation to make a ton of money off a small stake is too much to pass up. A $100 stake can lead to a five-figure or even a six-figure payout in larger Survivor Pools, and they are more fun than parlays given their week-to-week nature. Here are some tips to help you win your Survivor Pool in 2021.

Stick With Home Favorites

One of the biggest mistakes that Survivor Pool players can make is to roll the dice with road teams, especially early in the season. Home field advantage is a factor that oddsmakers use for a reason when setting lines, and to dismiss it is folly.

It might be tempting to get “cute” by taking a short road favorite and zigging when other people are going with a big favorite, but this strategy backfires more often than not, especially early in the season. While the perceived top teams coming into a season are indeed the top teams throughout the year, that next tier of teams can fluctuate wildly from preseason expectations. Don’t end up with egg on your face by going with a trendy team that will finish 6-11.

Fading Teams Can be Very Successful

Anyone that faded the New York Jets and Jacksonville Jaguars in 2020 was largely happy. Although Jacksonville upset Indianapolis in Week 1, the Jaguars lost their final 15 games to finish the season with just one victory. As for the Jets, they lost their first 13 games before finally securing their first win in Week 15 to avoid going winless.

It is very important to stick with top tier teams as much as possible, but there is a ton of value in identifying bad teams early. That allows you a lot of flexibility since you can repeatedly fade a certain team week after week in a Survivor Pool. Additionally, the Philadelphia 76ers have taught us that tanking can be a good thing, and bad teams are now more prone to throw in the towel early in an effort to get a better draft pick. 

Don’t be Too Concerned With Saving the Best Teams

The thought of saving certain teams is alluring. You might see that others are using the best teams early in the schedule, and think you will be better off taking a chance on a lesser team in order to have something in your pocket for later in the season. This might feel like a shrewd idea at the time, and if it works out it’s great, but you are more likely to regret this decision than you would if you just stuck with the best available team.

One or two injuries can make or break a team’s season, so it’s best to take every team while they are as healthy as possible. If a quarterback goes down, a contender can become an also-ran, and a slate of injuries could make even the best teams look terrible. In a 17-game season where injuries will play more of a factor than ever, it’s best not to save teams for the optim