The 2020 season upended many NFL survivor pool picks in Week 1, but Week 2 saw favorites go 14-2 straight-up. Now, the Ravens, Chiefs and Packers are unbeaten, while the Bengals, Dolphins and Lions are winless. Can you count on the Colts, who are the biggest favorites of the week at -11.5 at William Hill, against the floundering Jets in your NFL knockout pool picks? What about the Cardinals giving six points to the seemingly inept Lions or the Chargers as 6.5-point favorites against the struggling Panthers?

Which NFL survivor pool strategy should you follow a week after stars like Saquon Barkley and Christian McCaffrey went down with injuries? Before making any Week 3 NFL survivor picks, see what NFL guru Mike Tierney has to say. 

SportsLine's all-time No. 1 NFL expert, Tierney excels both straight-up and against the spread. Anyone who has followed his NFL picks is up more than $4,400. 

Last year, Tierney went 161-94-1 on straight-up NFL picks, beating the vast majority of experts on NFLPickWatch. A renowned sportswriter who's reported from seven Super Bowls, Tierney is an authority on the survivor pool format.

In Week 1 -- when hundreds of thousands of survivor players blew their entire season by picking the Colts, Eagles or 49ers -- Tierney rolled with the Ravens over the Browns. The result: Baltimore 38, Cleveland 6. In Week 2, Tierney advanced with the Steelers, who beat the Broncos, 26-21.

He has studied the entire regular-season schedule, plotting out which team he plans to take each week. You can only see his optimal survivor pool strategy over at SportsLine

Top Week 3 NFL survivor pool predictions

For Week 3, Tierney is not going with the 2-0 Cardinals, even though they're hosting the struggling Lions. The Cardinals still have games coming up against the Panthers, Jets and Dolphins, so it would be wise to save them.

Meanwhile, the Cardinals and Lions met in Week 1 last season, and Detroit had the upper hand for most of the game before they tied 27-27. Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford can still be dangerous, while top target Kenny Golladay should be back from a hamstring injury, so Tierney will steer clear of this one.

How to make Week 3 NFL survivor pool picks

Instead, Tierney has a confident pick on an underrated team whose opponent will be at a major disadvantage. Picking this team not only will get you to Week 4, Tierney says, but it will also put you in the optimal position to go deep in your NFL survivor pool. The time to pick this team is now, and you can only see the play over at SportsLine.

Which team is a must-back in your Week 3 survivor pool? Visit SportsLine now to see which team carries you to victory in Week 3, all from the No. 1 expert who crushes the NFL year-in and year-out, and find out.