The Week One push became a Week Two win for MDS, thanks to my misplaced faith in the Buccaneers and Jaguars.
As a result, it have faith in neither of them in Week Two.
This week, MDS and I disagree on two games. For all of our picks, let it scroll. Down the highway.
Texans at Patriots
MDS’s take: This is a tough one to pick with the Patriots’ uncertainty at quarterback, but I have to figure that with Jacoby Brissett starting, the Texans’ defense is good enough to win a close, low-scoring game.
MDS’s pick: Texans 13, Patriots 10.
Florio’s take: The Texans signed Brock Osweiler for one primary reason: To beat the Patriots. He did it last year in prime time, with Tom Brady playing. This year, Osweiler will find a way to outscore Jacoby Brissett, Jimmy Garoppolo, Julian Edelman, Steve Grogan, and/or Jim Plunkett.
Florio’s pick: Texans 27, Patriots 21.
Cardinals at Bills
MDS’s take: Firing the offensive coordinator won’t fix every problem in Buffalo. It may not fix any problem. The guy who needs to be fired is the guy who runs the defense.
MDS’s pick: Cardinals 31, Bills 21.
Florio’s take: Rex Ryan says the Cardinals are the “exact” team the Bills need on their schedule. He may not exactly know what that word means.
Florio’s pick: Cardinals 27, Bills 17.
Raiders at Titans
MDS’s take: The Titans showed off an impressive defensive effort in Detroit last week, and I think they’ll keep it going and get to a surprising 2-1.
MDS’s pick: Titans 17, Raiders 14.
Florio’s take: Oakland’s defense is great, Tennessee’s offense is a work in progress. Oakland’s offense give them the edge in this one, especially if One-Eyed Jack Del Rio keeps taking chances and having them pay off.
Florio’s pick: Raiders 21, Titans 18.
Browns at Dolphins
MDS’s take: This is a matchup of 0-2 teams, but it’s a matchup of very different 0-2 teams. The Dolphins have talent and have shown promise this season. The Browns have rookie third-string quarterback Cody Kessler forced into the starting lineup. Miami should win easily.
MDS’s pick: Dolphins 28, Browns 10.
Florio’s take: Miami should be 1-1, could be 2-0, will be 1-2.
Florio’s pick: Dolphins 35, Browns 17.
Ravens at Jaguars
MDS’s take: I’m completely unimpressed by the Jaguars this season, and by Gus Bradley’s entire tenure. They’re going to drop to 0-3 on Sunday.
MDS’s pick: Ravens 24, Jaguars 10.
Florio’s take: The flavor of the month has quickly gone rancid, and the Ravens are finding ways to win games. No one expected Jacksonville to be 0-3 or Baltimore to be 3-0, and that’s one of the things to love about the NFL. Unless you’re a Jaguars fan.
Florio’s pick: Ravens 23, Jaguars 20.
Lions at Packers
MDS’s take: Last year the Lions finally snapped their decades-long losing streak at Lambeau Field. This year it should be a close and competitive game but Aaron Rodgers will pull it out in the end.
MDS’s pick: Packers 24, Lions 23.
Florio’s take: Aaron Rodgers won’t need a Hail Mary this time around. If he does, Packers fans may need to start saying their prayers for the 2016 season.
Florio’s pick: Packers 30, Lions 20.
Broncos at Bengals
MDS’s take: The Bengals’ defense should shut down Trevor Siemian. The Broncos’ defense could shut down Andy Dalton, too, but I think Cincinnati will put just enough points on the board.
MDS’s pick: Bengals 17, Broncos 13.
Florio’s take: The Broncos face another team on its own turf for the first time since losing at Pittsburgh last December. They’re facing another AFC North team, in its regular-season home opener. And this time the Bengals have Andy Dalton healthy and available.
Florio’s pick: Bengals 23, Broncos 17.
Vikings at Panthers
MDS’s take: Sam Bradford got off to a good start in his first game in Minnesota, but the Panthers’ defense will cause some problems for him, and a couple of Bradford turnovers will be the difference.
MDS’s pick: Panthers 28, Vikings 17.
Florio’s take: Good luck throwing against a defense that isn’t defending against the run. And good luck stopping an offense with Cam Newton, Greg Olsen, and Kelvin Benjamin firing on all cylinders.
Florio’s pick: Panthers 31, Vikings 21.
Washington at Giants
MDS’s take: The Giants can virtually put Washington out of the NFC East race only three weeks into the season with a win here, which would improve the Giants to 3-0 and drop Washington to 0-3. I think that’s exactly what will happen.
MDS’s pick: Giants 20, Washington 17.
Florio’s take: It’s coming together for the Giants and coming apart for Washington. The margin for error gets a lot narrower for the defending NFC East champions.
Florio’s pick: Giants 24, Washington 16.
Rams at Buccaneers
MDS’s take: I liked what the Rams’ defense did on Sunday against the Seahawks, but the Case Keenum-led offense remains one of the worst offenses I’ve ever seen in the NFL. The Bucs win a low-scoring game here.
MDS’s pick: Buccaneers 14, Rams 6.
Florio’s take: The Rams have beaten the Bucs in each of Jeff Fisher’s four prior years as head coach. Notwithstanding last weekend’s debacle in the desert, these Buccaneers are better than any edition of the team Fisher has seen.
Florio’s pick: Buccaneers 17, Rams 13.
49ers at Seahawks
MDS’s take: The 49ers’ Week One win said more about the Rams than it did about the 49ers. The reality is this San Francisco team is not good. The Seahawks should win easily.
MDS’s pick: Seahawks 30, 49ers 10.
Florio’s take: Niners beat Rams, Rams beat Seahawks. So, of course, Seahawks beat Niners, thanks to an offense that can do just enough to complement a defense that been as good as ever.
Florio’s pick: Seahawks 15, 49ers 12.
Jets at Chiefs
MDS’s take: The Chiefs’ special teams is off to a great start this year, and I have a hunch that a big special teams play is going to be the difference on Sunday.
MDS’s pick: Chiefs 24, Jets 20.
Florio’s take: The Chiefs are determined not to have another slow start; they need to hold serve at home against a team that hopes to force its way into playoff contention.
Florio’s pick: Chiefs 27, Jets 20.
Chargers at Colts
MDS’s take: The Colts’ secondary is beaten up, but with injuries to Keenan Allen and Danny Woodhead, I’m not sure the Chargers’ passing game can take advantage. I like the Colts to win a close one.
MDS’s pick: Colts 17, Chargers 16.
Florio’s take: The Chargers have owned the Colts during the Philip Rivers era, with a 6-1 record since Rivers became the starter. Yes, the Colts are desperate. They just simply don’t have the horses. (Pun not intended, which makes it no less lame.)
Florio’s pick: Chargers 24, Colts 20.
Steelers at Eagles
MDS’s take: The Eagles have looked great through two games, but they’ve looked great against bad teams. This week they play a good team, and they won’t look so good.
MDS’s pick: Steelers 20, Eagles 10.
Florio’s take: It’s correction week for Carson Wentz and company, but it won’t be as jarring as expected. The Eagles are good enough to beat bad-to-average teams. They’re not ready to beat great teams.
Florio’s pick: Steelers 30, Eagles 23.
Bears at Cowboys
MDS’s take: The Bears were a mess with Jay Cutler, and they won’t be any better with Brian Hoyer. The Cowboys should win handily.
MDS’s pick: Cowboys 27, Bears 10.
Florio’s take: Brian Hoyer and Dak Prescott may not be ready for prime time, but prime time is ready for them. Advantage Cowboys, who hope to pile up as many wins as they can while Tony Romo works his way back from a fractured vertebrate.
Florio’s pick: Cowboys 28, Bears 17.
Falcons at Saints
MDS’s take: The Saints have started the season 0-2 and have some major holes on their roster, but I think the Falcons’ defense is going to let Drew Brees have a field day.
MDS’s pick: Saints 35, Falcons 31.
Florio’s take: With record numbers certain to tune in for the first presidential debate, both teams are destined to lose. One will lose twice. Edge goes to the home team, whose defense is quickly improving.
Florio’s pick: Saints 31, Falcons 28.