Survivor: Cagayan - Power Rankings
Week 5
By Jim Van Nest, Survivor Analyst
March 25, 2014

He's smiling because he knows he has already locked up the Fan Favorite money.

Hello, good people, and welcome back to the Survivor: Cagayan Power Rankings. Last week's tribal switch up totally jacked up my rankings and the result was as unpredictable as I thought it might be. The Brains are all of a sudden in power and the cracks that were starting to form in Brawn were blown wide open as my #4 ranked player, Cliff Robinson, was sent down the walk of shame. While my rankings will change drastically this week, the one spot I'm not changing is the very top spot.

1) LJ - LJ was my #1 last week and if anything, he solidified his spot here. The little crack that existed in the Brawn tribe was exploited by LJ as he got Trish and Tony to flip to join him and Jefra and send Uncle Cliff packing. While the other tribe won this week, I could definitely see LJ's tribe go on a winning streak that could keep them out of Tribal for a while. Either way, LJ has the numbers as well as an alliance on his new tribe and with his old Beauty members (save Morgan). And, oh by the way, he managed to pull that off while keeping his hidden idol. Dude has game and is THE player to watch, if you ask me.

2) Jefra - I'm moving Jefra up a spot because I still think she's most likely to be carried to the end with LJ. The pair find themselves in a great spot now, where they're not likely to lose too much and if they do, they have a two more people to dump (Woo and Lindsay) before things start getting real. So, for now, Jefra sits atop the rankings with LJ doing all the heavy lifting.

3) Tasha - What's that you say, Tasha? Not Spencer? Yep, that's right. Tasha. The Brains are in the driver's seat on the new Aparri tribe and as much as I like Spencer, we can't forget that he was the odd man out on his own tribe just two episodes ago. With Alexis, Morgan and Sarah in play on this new tribe; Spencer could easily be the odd man out again. Tasha and Kass have been pretty well aligned and if they pick up Alexis and Sarah, they could girl power their way to the merge and be a real force to be reckoned with. At the same time, Kass is kind of annoying, so Tasha could dump her in favor of Spencer and still rock the same way. She gets the #3 spot because right now, she has a ton of options.

4) Tony - As the swing vote last week, Tony cemented himself in with LJ, Jefra and Trish. He's ahead of Trish on my list for two reasons. The first is that he still has an idol. The second is because Trish is volatile and may not make it out of this week's episode. I have Tony ranked this high, but don't read this as giving him a bunch of credit. He's just in a good spot now where there will be more important targets. If he keeps playing like he has been, he'll overplay himself soon and could find himself the victim of a massive blindside, with an idol in his pocket.

5) Spencer - I'll put Spencer here because I think he's the smartest guy left in the game and he's been a solid challenge competitor. I don't have him higher because he's the smartest guy left in the game and he's been a solid challenge competitor. The same things that rank him this high could be the reason someone else will want to dump him. He could potentially grab the factionless in Aparri (Morgan, Jeremiah and Sarah) and really flip the game on its head. Or he could stand pat for a few votes and hope things shake out for him.

6) Trish - Even though I think Trish is headed for a crash and burn here soon, she is in the majority alliance on a tribe that should win some challenges. The move she made last week almost guarantees her the merge...unless Lindsay kills her this week and buries the body. I don't think Trish has any kind of long term game, unless she becomes the goat to carry to the final three. While people were willing to carry Philip even though he annoyed them, I don't see the same thing happening for Trish. So I think she'll outlast Woo and Lindsay at this point, but I think she's be the first in the alliance to go.

7) Alexis - Of the people coming to the Brains for an alliance, I think Alexis is in the best shape. She comes across as someone trying to play the game, which we know Tasha appreciates. And unlike Morgan, her argument centers more on how they can work together than on how bad the other people are. She presented a good case to the Brains and I could definitely see them making her their fourth member. And if she makes the merge with LJ and Jefra, the Beauty tribe could reunite and take it to the end.

8) Kass - I'll put Kass here at #8 because I think she's in a good spot for the next few votes, but I really don't think she has a chance to win this game. She's too rough around the edges. What she considers being a straight shooter comes off as bitchy to other people. Also, she's a liability in challenges and a couple bad performances could have her on the outside looking in. Ultimately, a lot of things would have to go perfectly for Kass to find herself at the final tribal arguing for a million dollars.

9) Jeremiah - The reason he's not closer to the bottom is that the Aparri tribe needs dudes. LJ, Woo and Tony are formidable in challenges right now and Spencer will not want to take them all on himself. I could see him lobbying to keep Jeremiah for team strength in challenges. And let's face it, Morgan is an easy target and Sarah has no one else. This tribe could do Tribal twice before having to make the tough decision.

10) Sarah - All that said, Sarah is a tough chick. She's also no dummy. Being on an island out there could give her a real solid argument to make to either the three Beauty members (or more likely) the three Brains on why she would be a good fourth. She has no one to flip to. The Beauties could conceivably stick with each other and turn it on the Brains. Sarah is alone, which makes her an ideal fourth. We just didn't really see her make that argument last week, so she may have missed her chance.

11) Morgan - I feel pretty confident that if Aparri goes to Tribal this week, Morgan's toast. She has tried to align with the Brains, but I don't think she did near as nice of a job as Alexis did. Jeremiah is needed strength as is Sarah. Morgan is the one that would seem to be the most expendable, should this tribe lose. I think Morgan has game and can definitely figure something out, but she'll need another Aparri win to work that out, I think. If they stay out of Tribal this week, Morgan could move up in next week's rankings.

12) Woo - The smart play for the new Solana alliance would be to oust Cliff's right hand man, Woo. He's crazy likable and he's very athletic and could be a threat to win every individual immunity challenge out there. If the new alliance is thinking clearly, this is an easy choice. However, they united in an attempt to get rid of one person and they succeeded. Will they be able to stay united? Or will Trish's hatred of Lindsay possibly divide this new alliance? At this point, the new alliance has the next two votes lined up, so they might just give Trish what she wants...which buys Woo three more days.

13) Lindsay - Everything about the previews suggests Lindsay is toast. She and Trish have a major battle back at camp and we see a quick shot of Probst in camp, at night, talking to Lindsay. This is never a good development. He only shows up for injuries, but she doesn't look hurt. We could be looking at a quit here? If not, the Lindsay/Trish situation might just be too volatile for the tribe to keep. It's for this reason that I think Lindsay is the boot this way or another.

At this point, there are 13 people left in this game and the merge usually comes into play around 10. That means these tribes have 3 votes to remove their weakest links or biggest competition before the game gets individual. I fully expect LJ and the Brain alliance to start setting up their pieces for the merge. That setup begins this week. Be sure to come back for the recap of this week's episode right here at Box Office Prophets. Wanna take me to task for something, feel free to follow me on Twitter: @vannestjc. Until the recap, take care!