MDS has built a lead. Will he hold it, or will he Falcon things up?
Last week, I picked up a game in the straight-up competition, going 10-6 to his 9-7. Against the spread I did even better, going 10-5-1 to his 6-10.
For the year, he’s 33-15 straight up and 27-21 against the spread. I’m now 31-17 and 26-21-1.
For this week’s picks, featuring no straight-up disagreements but a couple when the spread is factored in, scroll away.
Broncos (+1.5) at Jets
MDS’s pick: Jets 24, Broncos 13.
Florio’s take: How bad have things gotten for the Jets? Bad enough that they’re slim favorites against a winless team starting an undrafted quarterback better known for being the nephew of Mark Rypien. If the Jets don’t win now, they never will.
Florio’s pick: Jets 20, Broncos 10.
Browns (+4.5) at Cowboys
MDS’s take: The Dak Prescott-led Cowboys’ offense should put plenty of points on the board, and I don’t think the Browns’ offense can keep up.
MDS’s pick: Cowboys 30, Browns 17.
Florio’s take: The ground-and-pound Browns won’t be able to slow down a passing attack led by Dak Prescott and more receivers than Cleveland can consistently cover.
Florio’s pick: Cowboys 34, Browns 24.
Vikings (+4.5) at Texans
MDS’s pick: Texans 27, Vikings 20.
Florio’s take: It’s the Something’s Gotta Give Bowl. Do the Texans have the offense to outpace an improving Minnesota attack? Maybe not, but I refuse to pick the Vikings until they show they can win a game.
Florio’s pick: Texans 34, Vikings 27.
Saints (-4) at Lions
MDS’s take: The Lions looked better than expected on Sunday and the Saints looked worse, but I just don’t see the Lions’ defense being able to stop the Saints’ multifaceted offensive attack.
MDS’s pick: Saints 30, Lions 20.
Florio’s take: The Lions have gotten their win for the first half of the season, so they can take their foot off the gas against a desperate Saints team.
Florio’s pick: Saints 31, Lions 17.
Colts (-2.5) at Bears
MDS’s pick: Colts 20, Bears 10.
Florio’s take: With the Eagles, Frank Reich helped lead Nick Foles to a Super Bowl MVP award. Frank Reich’s team now becomes the first opponent for Foles’ latest stint as a starter. Indy pops Chicago’s unbeaten bubble, but in a close one.
Florio’s pick: Colts 23, Bears 20.
Cardinals (-3.5) at Panthers
MDS’s take: Kyler Murray had a rough game on Sunday, with three interceptions against the Lions, but he’ll bounce back in a big way against a young Panthers Defense that is going to have trouble keeping up with the Cardinals’ wide-open offense.
MDS’s pick: Cardinals 32, Panthers 21.
Florio’s take: The Cardinals need to learn how to win the games they’re supposed to win. Last week, they failed. This week, it won’t get any easier against a Carolina team that is ahead of schedule in its effort to rebuild.
Florio’s pick: Cardinals 30, Panthers 23.
Ravens (-13) at Washington
MDS’s pick: Ravens 20, Washington 10.
Florio’s take: If the Chiefs are Baltimore’s Kryptonite, Washington is Baltimore’s Jimmy Olsen.
Florio’s pick: Ravens 30, Washington 13.
Chargers (+7) at Buccaneers
MDS’s pick: Buccaneers 17, Chargers 10.
Florio’s take: Justin Herbert followed a great debut with a clunker. He’ll get a glimpse on Sunday of what he’s striving to ultimately become.
Florio’s pick: Buccaneers 27, Chargers 13.
Jaguars (+3) at Bengals
MDS’s take: I think Joe Burrow can have a bright future ahead of him, but he simply doesn’t have a good enough team around him just yet. The Jaguars will go to Cincinnati and come home with a win.
MDS’s pick: Jaguars 21, Bengals 14.
Florio’s take: Jacksonville lost to Miami because quarterback Gardner Minshew didn’t have the time to operate the offense. That won’t be the case against the Bengals.
Florio’s pick: Jaguars 30, Bengals 24.
Seahawks (-6.5) at Dolphins
MDS’s take: The Seahawks’ secondary is a mess, and I expect Ryan Fitzpatrick to gain plenty of yards through the air. But Russell Wilson will make a few more big plays as the Seahawks win a close one.
MDS’s pick: Seahawks 35, Dolphins 31.
Florio’s take: FitzMagic mode is in full effect, but the Dolphins don’t have the firepower to match the #LetRussCook menu.
Florio’s pick: Seahawks 31, Dolphins 20.
Giants (+13) at Rams
MDS’s take: The Rams are coming off a heartbreaking loss to the Bills, but they should bounce back easily against a very bad Giants team.
MDS’s pick: Rams 31, Giants 10.
Florio’s take: Whenever a team is getting 13 points, how can you pick against them to cover? When they’re the Giants, and when they’re playing the Rams.
Florio’s pick: Rams 27, Giants 13.
Bills (-3) at Raiders
MDS’s take: Josh Allen is an MVP candidate, and he’s going to keep it going against a Raiders Defense that looked on Sunday like it has a lot of holes.
MDS’s pick: Bills 28, Raiders 21.
Florio’s take: Josh Allen was pissed about the 25-point lead that got away. He’ll be determined to build and hold a lead against a Vegas team that’s surely feeling a little shell-shocked after losing in New England.
Florio’s pick: Bills 30, Raiders 20.
Patriots (+7) at Chiefs
MDS’s take: It wouldn’t surprise me if the Chiefs have a bit of a letdown after their big win on Monday night, but even with a letdown I see them finding a way to beat the Patriots.
MDS’s pick: Chiefs 24, Patriots 21.
Florio’s take: If there’s a postseason rematch, I’ll pick the Patriots. For now, Kansas City has the horses to outscore Cam Newton and company.
Florio’s pick: Chiefs 31, Patriots 27.
Eagles (+7) at 49ers
MDS’s take: The 49ers have been ravaged by injuries, but until I see more from Carson Wentz, I can’t pick the Eagles to win.
MDS’s pick: 49ers 20, Eagles 17.
Florio’s take: The 49ers have become the ultimate Next Man Up team. It helps to be facing a series of Next Man Overboard opponents.
Florio’s pick: 49ers 27, Eagles 17.
Falcons (+7.5) at Packers
MDS’s take: The Packers’ offense is firing on all cylinders right now, and the Falcons’ defense can’t stop anyone. I don’t think this game will be close.
MDS’s pick: Packers 34, Falcons 17.
Florio’s take: The Falcons won’t have to worry about blowing a big lead this week.
Florio’s pick: Packers 40, Falcons 24.