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Survivor: Backing the Texans

Chris Liss

Chris Liss is RotoWire's Managing Editor and Host of RotoWIre Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM radio.

Surviving Week 11

Last week was it for a lot of you, and whether that was a good or bad thing likely depended on whether you had Indy left. If you faded Tennessee and had Indy, you likely went down with them. But if you had used Indy, then you probably took the Giants and fast forwarded toward the end of your pool - assuming you didn't win it outright. Week 10 then was a good illustration of what happens when a huge portion of your pool is on one heavily-favored team, and that team loses.

For those of you that are still going, let's take a look at Week 11:

Team Opponent %Taken Vegas ML** Vegas Odds
Cardinals JAGUARS 25.20% 300 75.00
BENGALS Browns 25.00% 230 69.70
SEAHAWKS Vikings 14.00% 625 86.21
TEXANS Raiders 11.80% 310 75.61
GIANTS Packers 8.50% 210 67.74
EAGLES Redskins 3.60% 170 62.96
BRONCOS Chiefs 2.80% 360 78.26
Home team in CAPS
** Average of the two moneylines

Looking at the numbers, the Seahawks are the easy call, but I doubt many of you have them available. The Broncos are next, but you've probably used them too. After that, the Texans are the play - according to Vegas - given that only 12 percent are on them. But many used the Texans early in the year, and if so, that's where the first tough decision is - between the Cardinals at 25 percent taken and the Giants at 8.5 percent. (The Cardinals clearly trump the Bengals given they have the same number of people on them, but a significantly better chance to win - at least according to Vegas). We can crunch the numbers between AZ and NYG, but I'm fairly sure the Cardinals will come out marginally ahead of the Giants as 25 percent doesn't offer massive pot odds the way Tennessee did last week at 68 percent, and the Cardinals are ahead of the Giants by a decent margin in win likelihood.

My Picks

1. Seattle Seahawks

I don't have to explain why taking the Seahawks at home against the Vikings is a pretty safe play. I give Seattle an 87 percent chance to win this game.

2. Denver Broncos

It's not often you'd go against an undefeated team in survivor, but the Chiefs have had an incredibly easy schedule thus far, were dominated by the Bills but for a couple fluke defensive TDs two weeks ago and travel to play the best team in the league. I give the Broncos a 78 percent chance to win this game.

3. Houston Texans

The Texans have lost seven games in a row, but Case Keenum seems like a player, they played a competitive game against a tough Arizona team on the road and now have a home matchup against a Raiders squad that might be the second worst in the NFL. I give the Texans a 77 percent chance to win this game.

4. Arizona Cardinals

Taking the Cardinals on the road might sound dicey, but the Jaguars have been historically bad this season, and last week's win in Tennessee doesn't really change that. The Cardinals have found some balance on offense with Andre Ellington, and the defense is top shelf. I give the Cardinals a 75 percent chance to win this game.

5. New York Giants

The Giants are favored, and they should win this game, but Eli Manning has been in an 18-game slump, the special teams have been disastrous, and the Packers aren't as bad as they showed last week. If Scott Tolzien is as good as Brian Hoyer or Case Keenum, the Giants could have a tough time. Still, I give the Giants a 68 percent chance to win this game at home.

Notable Omissions

Cincinnati Bengals: With Geno Atkins and Leon Hall out, the Browns have the better defense, the quarterbacks are roughly equal, and both have playmaking receivers. In short, there's not a lot of daylight between these teams right now.

Philadelphia Eagles: The Eagles never win at home, don't have a good defense and face a quarterback in Robert Griffin that has a high ceiling. Moreover, Nick Foles won't go all year without throwing a pick.