Port v Pies - In a nutshell there is almost no way the Power can win. They simply aren't good enough and are in dreadful form. The Pies however are in decent form and rolling through any challenge they meet. They are playing too well as a team. Pies by 58, upset chance 10%
Cats v Hawks - Could be a corker, but I suspect the Cats will take the honours because their midfield is more solid and their forward line as too much versatility (and that is with Mooney and Johnson out). Hodge is in outstanding form, but with Mitchell out look to Ling to keep him quiet. Big test for Hodge to have an impact with Ling on him. However if the Hawks can at least curb the midfield influence of the Cats they probably match up better against a team of 1 tall than multiple talls. The Cats defence may also be stretched against a Hawks line up that is learning to spread their goal kickers. Cats by 12, upset chance 35%.
Eagles v Crows - Battle of the light weights, game 1. Adelaide is in far better form wining 4 of their last 7. The Eagles can't win tick at the moment, and don't look likely to break that in this game. However they do have homeground, and Adelaide has yet to get a win away from AAMI. Still, Crows by 40, upset chance 25%
Lions v Saints - Yes its at the Gabba. That's pro for the Lions. But that's it. Nothing else. The Saints should romp it home. They are an organised disciplined outfit with an excellent midfield and backline. I still have question marks on their forward line that is definitely small reliant (and this is a trend this year for a lot of teams), but the Lions have just got nothing to answer with. Saints by 70, upset chance 5%
Tigers v Freo - The Tigers have form (one of those things that I still can't get used to saying) and its at home. Freo however, are a top 4 side. They simply should be too good. The question will be how much of a difference does the absence of Barlow make. We'll find out, because based on form the Tigers have belief and are hard at it. They may well test the dockers. Still backing the WA boys though. Freo by 30, upset chance 40%
Swans v North - Arguably the most important game of the round. Super important game for both teams. The winner claims 8th spot and a game ahead of the loser. The loser has got a heap of work to do. The Swans have been a bit jittery since running through a horror streak of draw and injury, and the Roos have been brave and doing enough to stick around. Some key players missing for both sides, but the advantage surely has to go to the Swans as they are on the SCG, a ground they love. Swans by 5, upset chance 49%
Dees v Bombers - Battle of the light weights, game 2. The Dees have probably been more impressive than expected this year, but it doesn't hide the fact that they are 1-1-7 in the last 9, with the win coming 5 weeks ago. The Dons also last won 5 rounds ago, but before then had some decent form. They've fallen away badly due to Hille being out, and that is still the case. So who is going to win? No idea. I'm tipping the Dees because the lost to Adelaide (44 points) by a lot less than Essendon (85 points) did, and both games were in consecutive weeks. Dees by 15, upset chance 49%
Blues v Dogs - Like the Cats v Hawks, it could be a corker. Could be. The Blues and Dogs have both been shaky in recent times. Just when the Dogs look to be back on track they drop a game, and the Blues were setting sights to top 4 and they dropped a couple. I rate the Dogs as a better overall side, and they were very good last week in defeat, albeit as a Doggies supporter friend of mine said, still worse with their skills than you would expect. The Blues, well its hard to know what to make. They flogged the Lions, but frankly who cares. And they weren't particularly good about doing it either. I'm backing the Dogs due to class. Dogs by 18, upset chance 40%