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Best Bets: Bears-Raiders, survivor pools and more

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One of our writers got our first strike in survivor pool, against the Bears’ next opponent. Is it an omen?

Oakland Raiders v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images

For once both Jeff and Sam came out on the right side of their Bears picks, both taking the favorite and the under.

The Bears cover was never really in doubt and neither was the over, if we’re honest.

In the survivor pool, it was not quite so easy swimming for Sam. He took the Colts at home against the Raiders and watched in shame as he got his first strike. They were touchdown underdogs! That’s betting for you.

Jeff faired better using the tried-and-true picking against the Dolphins. Overall, five more were eliminated, bringing the total to eight out, while nine now have two strikes, 15 have one strike including Sam and Lester and 16 with no strikes, which has Jeff among them.

The pair is tied in the pick ‘em pool at 28. t4m8shn lost his top spot though, as CoachClem02 dethroned him and is the new leader with 25 points. Blowfish won the week with an impressive 12 points.

On we roll!

Bears (-5.5) at Oakland (London) O/U: 40.5

Sunday, noon

Sam: There’s a variety of lines out there for this game, with the Bears favored between 5 and 6 which makes this one a little bit tougher to pick because it’s been all over the place. The Bears opened a 6-point favorite but it was bet down to as low as 4 at some books but now it’s back up to between 5 and 6, suggesting that there’s been a lot of movement.

The designated home team in London has not covered a spread in the last four games and are 10-14 against the number overall in the series’ history. Jon Gruden is 8-12 against the spread in his return to Oakland.

While the Bears are dealing with some drama of their own, I think that Nagy has the team focused and ready to go. Obviously, Khalil Mack is going to be bringing his absolute best and likely let out some frustrations.

It may be ugly and it may start slow, but I think the Bears take care of business and cover while the under comes in.

As for survivor picks, it’s going to be Kansas City for me. I am not quite ready to burn the Patriots, especially since they have such an easy looking schedule. The Chiefs get the Colts at home and after watching the Raiders run roughshod over them, I think Patrick Mahomes can beat up on them.

Picks: Bears -5.5, under 40.5, Chiefs (survivor)

Bears pick record: 6-1

Jeff Berckes: Maybe I should just copy off Sam’s paper more often as we both hit on the Bears cover and under last week. Reality is I’m stubborn so I’m doing this one blind as I refuse to look at Sam’s picks until the article is etched in virtual ink. The Bears traveling to London to face the Raiders is interesting because that makes it basically a road game for both teams. The Raiders flew out right away, which I believe is the right thing. We’ve seen teams come out flat in the past due to jet lag and adjusting to time zones. I do think all those things can matter in football games, but I’m simply not convinced the Raiders are going to be able to do much of anything against this Bears defense. Chase Daniel can operate this offense in the short run and should be able to get enough points to push the Bears over the top. Like last week, give me the Bears to cover. I’m also firmly on the under until either this defense shows weakness or the offense comes to life in a sustained manner.

As for the Survivor Pool, I’ve struggled with this pick all week. I’m stuck between burning the Patriots against Washington, the Eagles at home against the Jets, or the Chiefs against the Colts. I think all three of those teams likely wins their game without much trouble so who do I want to save for down the road? The Eagles play the Dolphins down the line and the Patriots have a couple of nice matchups at home including next week against the Giants. The Chiefs have the Raiders and Broncos at home in December. While I reserve the right to change my mind, I’m leaning towards taking the Chiefs this week. As an extra bonus, I’ll be at that game so it’ll give some small stakes to cheer for a victory. Yeah, I booked the game before Andrew Luck retired...

Picks: Bears -5, under 40.5, Chiefs (survivor)

Bears pick record: 4-3

What are you picking this week? Chime in on the comments below or take the conversation to Twitter with Sam @samhouseholder and Jeff @gridironborn.