The regular-season contest is ending soon, and the divide between MDS and yours truly continues to be five games.
After splitting four disagreements last week, and going 9-7 each, I’m at 140-84 (62.5 percent) for the year, and MDS is at 135-89 (60.2 percent). This week, we disagree on two games.
We’ve also got a new “best bets” video for your consideration. Last week, I went 1-2 against the spread. MDS also was 1-2.
Washington at Titans
MDS’s take: Both teams remain in playoff contention heading into Week 16, but I have a hard time picturing Washington winning this one with Josh Johnson at quarterback. The Titans appear headed for a Week 17 playoff play-in game against the Colts.
MDS’s pick: Titans 24, Washington 10.
Florio’s take: The Titans go for their fourth straight win against a team that somehow has won seven games this season. Tennessee has the better team, and the better chance to get to the postseason.
Florio’s pick: Titans 24, Washington 13.
Ravens at Chargers
MDS’s take: Right now, these would be the two AFC wild card teams. But the Chargers are still fighting for home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs, and I think they’re going to make a statement against the Ravens.
MDS’s pick: Chargers 30, Ravens 20.
Florio’s take: That 30,000-seat soccer stadium in Carson, California finally hosts a huge regular-season game, perhaps only three weeks before hosting its first playoff game. The Chargers are more rested, they’re at home, and they are slightly better, from an overall talent standpoint.
Florio’s pick: Chargers 27, Ravens 23.
Bengals at Browns
MDS’s take: The Browns are favored by more than a touchdown for the first time in five years. Believe the hype. This Cleveland team is good.
MDS’s pick: Browns 24, Bengals 13.
Florio’s take: Welcome back, Hue. The Browns have been waiting for you.
Florio’s pick: Browns 30, Bengals 20.
Buccaneers at Cowboys
MDS’s take: A Cowboys win clinches the NFC East, and that’s just what will happen.
MDS’s pick: Cowboys 27, Buccaneers 17.
Florio’s take: The Cowboys got their wake-up call in Indy. They return home to face a team that really doesn’t have much to play for, and that doesn’t really have the talent to compete with a true contender.
Florio’s pick: Cowboys 27, Buccaneers 10.
Vikings at Lions
MDS’s take: The Vikings had a great first game with new offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski, and they should keep it going against a bad Lions defense.
MDS’s pick: Vikings 28, Lions 14.
Florio’s take: Kevin Stefanski continues to do what John DeFilippo didn’t. And it continues to work, for now.
Florio’s pick: Vikings 23, Lions 14.
Bills at Patriots
MDS’s take: The Patriots will clinch the AFC East with a win over the Bills and snap their two-game losing streak.
MDS’s pick: Patriots 30, Bills 20.
Florio’s take: Go ahead, write them off. It will play right into their hands.
Florio’s pick: Patriots 34, Bills 13.
Packers at Jets
MDS’s take: Two teams already eliminated from playoff contention meet in a game that is interesting only to those who want to see how far Aaron Rodgers has fallen, and how far Sam Darnold has come.
MDS’s pick: Packers 21, Jets 20.
Florio’s take:The Packers haven’t won a road game all year. Here’s their last and perhaps best chance to get a win away from Lambeau Field.
Florio’s pick: Packers 24, Jets 20.
Texans at Eagles
MDS’s take: The Eagles looked great against the Rams, but I don’t think Nick Foles can keep it going against a Texans defense that will shut down the running game and force Foles to pass.
MDS’s pick: Texans 20, Eagles 17.
Florio’s take: Here they come, making a late run at a playoff berth that could become an intriguing run in January.
Florio’s pick: Eagles 20, Texans 13.
Falcons at Panthers
MDS’s take: Even without playoff implications there are some good players to watch on both teams, with Julio Jones having a big season for the Falcons and Christian McCaffrey having a big season for the Panthers. I see the Panthers finally snapping their losing streak.
MDS’s pick: Panthers 27, Falcons 24.
Florio’s take: Taylor Heinecke gets a chance to let everyone know who he is. And he’s not Matt Ryan.
Florio’s pick: Falcons 27, Panthers 17.
Giants at Colts
MDS’s take: The Colts are cruising toward the playoffs and should dominate an undermanned Giants team.
MDS’s pick: Colts 28, Giants 7.
Florio’s take: They shut out the Cowboys. Can they do the same to one of the Cowboys’ top rivals? Maybe.
Florio’s pick: Colts 20, Giants 6.
Jaguars at Dolphins
MDS’s take: The Dolphins are clinging to slim playoff hopes and should beat a Jaguars team with nothing to play for.
MDS’s pick: Dolphins 28, Jaguars 17.
Florio’s take: It’s been a very bad year for Florida teams. The one with slim playoff chances gets a win.
Florio’s pick: Dolphins 20, Jaguars 10.
Rams at Cardinals
MDS’s take: The Rams have not played well recently, but even if they play their worst game of the season I see them beating the Cardinals.
MDS’s pick: Rams 30, Cardinals 14.
Florio’s take: The Rams aren’t the team they were earlier in the year. But they should be good enough to knock off the Cardinals.
Florio’s pick: Rams 27, Cardinals 20.
Bears at 49ers
MDS’s take: Nick Mullens has played fairly well this season, but he hasn’t faced a defense like Chicago’s. This should be an easy Bears win.
MDS’s pick: Bears 27, 49ers 13.
Florio’s take: The 49ers have put together an impressive late-season surge, but the Bears are fighting for a possible bye.
Florio’s pick: Bears 30, 49ers 17.
Steelers at Saints
MDS’s take: I’m tempted to pick the Steelers to pull off the road upset, but I like the Saints to escape with a low-scoring win.
MDS’s pick: Saints 14, Steelers 13.
Florio’s take: The Steelers are good enough to beat anyone, anywhere. But the Saints won’t let it happen, not with the No. 1 seed on the line.
Florio’s pick: Saints 31, Steelers 24.
Chiefs at Seahawks
MDS’s take: A very intriguing game, with the Chiefs trying to hold on to secure home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, and the Seahawks wanting to bounce back from last week’s disappointing loss. I like Seattle to win a good game at home.
MDS’s pick: Seahawks 27, Chiefs 24.
Florio’s take: The Chiefs have struggled in prime time this year, and everyone struggles in Seattle.
Florio’s pick: Seahawks 20, Chiefs 17.
Broncos at Raiders
MDS’s take: Not much of a game on Christmas Eve, with both teams already eliminated from playoff contention. I have a hunch the Raiders will come out playing hard in what could be their last game in Oakland.
MDS’s pick: Raiders 24, Broncos 21.
Florio’s take: The Raiders say farewell to Oakland in the kind of style they haven’t displayed much in recent years.
Florio’s pick: Raiders 27, Broncos 20.