Of course this is the best opportunity to try to make a hand with something no one can see coming. But I’m not sticking my neck out any further than the amount of the blind. It’s terrible position. Even if you are certain that the only player in the hand, who raised, is trying to steal you blind and you call and don’t connect, you’re still out of position, still going to have to check-call all the way just to keep your end down to 28 for the hand and maybe he turns up something good anyway. I save my reading skills for another day. If no one raises, fine. I’ll take a peak. But it’s not really even my blind, it’s table tax. So why defend.
I play these in the same way as the Small Blind, with one exception: I never raise, ever. Not even with A-A. The only hope of raising with a lot of players in is to maybe get someone in early position to reraise and knockout some people and up your chances. But these games are erratic and predicting the play of 7 guys to the flop is a migraine waiting in the weeds. The best idea is to hope for a ragged flop so that you can bet at it like you hit a blind hand. If there happens to be JJ or 10-10 out there and they are an overpair, then you’ll have their money the whole way.
The other way is to just check-call until you have found a good spot. The only hands I might do this with are solid suited-connectors: QJ, J-10, 10-9, 9-8. I would only be doing it to build a pot so I could draw. There would first have to be 4 or fewer players in and they would have to be tighter players who can fold to the heat, but will throw away gutshots and backdoor flushes and small pocket pairs when they don’t trip the flop. If savvier players are in I don’t try this shit.
At the casino is a different story. If I have those solid suited connectors, I bet four. All 2 dollar limpers will call and if I get enough then I can’t get priced out unless I check the flop and someone bets 5 then gets raised. Still I’m right to draw, but may be beat if I get there. Same thing in the blind by raising it 2. Build the pot. Small investment for a good-sized pot.