Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws a pass during the second half against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium on September 13, 2020 in Inglewood, California.
Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws a pass during the second half against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium on September 13, 2020 in Inglewood, California.

There aren’t any obvious choices when it comes to survivor pool picks for NFL Week 12.

Every first-place team is either on a bye or facing an opponent with a .500 record or better. No team on Sunday is even favored by six points.

Here’s a ranking of the top-10 survivor pool picks for Week 12 of the 2021 season:

1) Dallas Cowboys (vs. Las Vegas Raiders)

The Raiders have fallen apart during their three-game losing streak. Las Vegas has been outscored 96-43 during the skid. Derek Carr is no longer playing like a top-10 quarterback. If Dallas’ offensive line can neutralize the Raiders’ pass rush, Las Vegas doesn’t stand much chance to pull off the upset.

2) Buffalo Bills (at New Orleans Saints)

Buffalo has struggled against good teams, but New Orleans has not been very good since Jameis Winston suffered a season-ending injury. The Saints are 0-3 with Trevor Siemian as the starting quarterback. Buffalo’s top-ranked defense will bounce back against a New Orleans offense that ranks 25th in yards per play.

3) Baltimore Ravens (vs. Cleveland Browns)

Baker Mayfield’s injuries have turned Cleveland’s passing attack into one of the NFL’s worst. The Browns have scored 17 points or fewer in six of their last eight games. Cleveland is 1-5 against teams that have a winning record. Baltimore is the best team in the AFC North.

4) Chicago Bears (at Detroit Lions)

Picking against the Lions has been a successful survivor pool strategy in every week but one. If Jared Goff can’t return from injury, Detroit will have the worst starting quarterback of Week 12. The Bears have beaten the Lions in six of their last seven meetings, including twice on Thanksgiving.

5) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (at Indianapolis Colts)

Antonio Brown has a real chance to return against the Colts, according to ESPN. Injuries have made life difficult for the Bucs in recent weeks, but the offense is as explosive as any in the NFL when Tom Brady has his full complement of weapons. This is a bad matchup for Jonathan Taylor and Indianapolis, given Tampa’s ability to stop the run.

6) Los Angeles Chargers (at Denver Broncos)

With the exception of their shocking win in Dallas, Denver has been exposed by the best teams on its schedule. In losses against Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Las Vegas and Cleveland, the Broncos scored just 15.4 points per game. Los Angeles hasn’t been defeated by a team that is outside of the latest playoff picture.

7) Philadelphia Eagles (at New York Giants)

The Eagles have owned the Giants in recent years, winning eight of their last nine meetings. Philadelphia is 4-0 against sub-.500 teams. The Eagles are scoring 34.5 points per game over the last month.

8) New England Patriots (vs. Tennessee Titans)

In three games since Derrick Henry was sidelined, the Titans rank 29th in yards per play. With Julio Jones out and A.J. Brown banged up due to multiple injuries, Tennessee’s offense faces a difficult challenge in New England. The Patriots have won by an average of 25 points during their five-game winning streak.

9) Green Bay Packers (vs. Los Angeles Rams)

When in doubt, going with Aaron Rodgers and the Packers at home isn’t a bad choice. Green Bay has won nine straight regular-season games at Lambeau Field. The Packers are 4-0 at home in 2021, winning by an average score of 26-11.

10) Cincinnati Bengals (vs. Pittsburgh Steelers)

The Bengals beat the Steelers 24-10 in Pittsburgh in Week 3. Injuries to Pittsburgh’s defense have taken a toll on the unit, which allowed a season-high 41 points in Week 11.

Dak Prescott Dallas Cowboys

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