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PFT’s Week Nine picks

The Texans on the road and the Seahawks and Vikings at home highlight some of PFT's best bets for Week 9.

We’re in midseason form. Which makes sense since it’s, you know, the middle of the season.

Last week, MDS and I posted matching 12-2 performances. The performance pushed my record for the season to 77-44 (63.6 percent). MDS is now 74-47 (61.1 percent).

The bad news is that we still have some work to do when it comes to picking games against the spread. Last week, we both posted a 2-1 mark in the best bets video. For the year, I’m at 12-11-1. MDS is 8-14-2.

For all of the Week Nine picks, which include only one disagreement. you know what to do.

Raiders at 49ers

MDS’s take: The NFL thought the battle of the Bay Area would be a good game when it was scheduled. Boy, where they wrong. Both of these teams stink, but I think the Raiders stink a little more.

MDS’s pick: 49ers 14, Raiders 13.

Florio’s take: It’s the Battle of the Bay. Of Pigs. Either Nick Mullens isn’t ready for prime time, or prime time isn’t ready for Nick Mullens.

Florio’s pick: Raiders 31, 49ers 27.

Bears at Bills

MDS’s take: It’s the Nathan Peterman show, which is likely to be a brutal beatdown against a good Bears defense.

MDS’s pick: Bears 20, Bills 6.

Florio’s take: If the Bills want to have a chance to win, they’ll play receiver Terrelle Pryor at quarterback, not Nathan Peterman. They won’t. And so they won’t win.

Florio’s pick: Bears 24, Bills 9.

Buccaneers at Panthers

MDS’s take: Ryan Fitzpatrick is a better quarterback than Jameis Winston, so that’s a point in the Buccaneers’ favor, but the Panthers’ offense should run wild against the weak Buccaneers defense.

MDS’s pick: Panthers 31, Buccaneers 30.

Florio’s take: Fitzpatrick or Winston, Winston or Fitzpatrick. It doesn’t matter against Cam.

Florio’s pick: Panthers 31, Buccaneers 23.

Chiefs at Browns

MDS’s take: Gregg Williams has an uphill climb in front of him because the Browns’ schedule only gets tougher, starting with a game against the Chiefs that should be a blowout.

MDS’s pick: Chiefs 35, Browns 17.

Florio’s take: Be careful what you wish for, Greggggggggggg.

Florio’s pick: Chiefs 38, Browns 13.

Jets at Dolphins

MDS’s take: Both of these teams have been up-and-down this year, so I think I’ll go with the home team in an unpredictable matchup.

MDS’s pick: Dolphins 24, Jets 21.

Florio’s take: October is over, Brocktober continues. However it plays out, there likely will be no Brockuary for the Dolphins.

Florio’s pick: Dolphins 23, Jets 20.

Steelers at Ravens

MDS’s take: This is a big one in the AFC North, and I think the Ravens’ defense will step up and shut down a good Pittsburgh offense.

MDS’s pick: Ravens 20, Steelers 14.

Florio’s take: It’s desperation time for a Ravens team that already has won in Pittsburgh. The sweep may still not be enough to get to the playoffs, but it’s something.

Florio’s pick: Ravens 30, Steelers 27.

Lions at Vikings

MDS’s take: The Lions signaled by trading Golden Tate that they don’t think they’re NFC North contenders. They’ll confirm that on Sunday.

MDS’s pick: Vikings 30, Lions 17.

Florio’s take: The Lions are 2-0 in U.S. Bank Stadium. They won’t extend that streak to three.

Florio’s pick: Vikings 31, Lions 21.

Falcons at Washington

MDS’s take: Washington is playing better than anyone expected, and Atlanta is playing worse than anyone expected.

MDS’s pick: Washington 20, Falcons 17.

Florio’s take: Another Sunday, another chance to doubt Washington. Haven’t we learned not to do that?

Florio’s pick: Washinton 23, Falcons 20.

Texans at Broncos

MDS’s take: Demaryius Thomas gets to go right back to Denver after the Broncos traded him away. I’m not sure he’ll be ready to contribute much on Day One, but I still like Deshaun Watson to have a better game than Case Keenum as the Texans win.

MDS’s pick: Texans 24, Broncos 21.

Florio’s take: Demaryius Thomas has a huge day in the only home stadium he’s ever known, and the Texans get their sixth win.

Florio’s pick: Texans 27, Broncos 20.

Chargers at Seahawks

MDS’s take: A good game between two teams in wild card contention in their respective conferences. I like the Seahawks at home.

MDS’s pick: Seahawks 28, Chargers 21.

Florio’s take: The Chargers remain destined for great things. They’ll just have a tough time dealing with a Seahawks team that is building more and more momentum, and that will have extra emotion for the first home game since the passing of owner Paul Allen. The home team takes what could be a Super Bowl preview.

Florio’s pick: Seahawks 24, Chargers 21.

Rams at Saints

MDS’s take: The Rams showed some signs that they’re mortal last week, and I think this is the week that their 0 will go.

MDS’s pick: Saints 27, Rams 24.

Florio’s take: Pop the cork, Bob Griese. The Taysom Hill package will ultimately be the difference for the Saints.

Florio’s pick: Saints 34, Rams 31.

Packers at Patriots

MDS’s take: The Packers’ secondary is down a starting safety after the Ha Ha Clinton-Dix trade, and I think Tom Brady will know just where to attack.

MDS’s pick: Patriots 31, Packers 21.

Florio’s take: Aaron Rodgers may be the better quarterback, but Tom Brady has much better support around him. And Brady is playing at home. And Brady won’t want to lose to a guy who hasn’t won on the road all year.

Florio’s pick: Patriots 30, Packers 21.

Titans at Cowboys

MDS’s take: Marcus Mariota looks broken to me. I’m not sure what happened, but he’s just not the player he should be in Year 4. I think he’ll struggle in Dallas.

MDS’s pick: Cowboys 20, Titans 17.

Florio’s take: The Cowboys yo-yo season continues. Home game after a loss equals a win. And, yes, it’s just that simple.

Florio’s pick: Cowboys 20, Titans 16.