Dusty Lines for Footy Inc.
Round 3 was full of upsets making it a tough one for head-to-head tipping. If you were tipping against the spread you would have been much better off taking the underdog rather than backing the favourites to cover the line – underdogs won 6 out of 9 lines in round 3 and are running at almost 60% for the season. Our Footy Inc. tipsters mainly favoured the favourites in round 3 and paid the price with a couple of major capitulations including my good self (2 out of 9) and Big O (1 out of 9). Here are the standings after round 3:
ROUND 4 LINES
West Coast -14.5 / Sydney +14.5
Wow, Sydney is 0-3 and with continuing injury troubles have to head to the west to take on West Coast before meeting GWS in round 5. They could easily be 0-5 and a long way from the top 4 where most pundits think they belong. But even if they do get to 0-5 you would not write them off as major premiership contenders – they might just have to do it the hard way this year.
The Eagles will want to bounce back after a disappointing loss to Richmond and will enjoy the dry conditions in Perth compared to the wet MCG they faced last Saturday.
Underdogs won 6 out of 9 lines in round 3 so I’m backing the Swans to keep it close and stay within the 14.5 point line.
West Coast -14.5 points – Big O, Moose Dogs, TRM, Hollywood
Sydney +14.5 points – Dusty, Shan, Ding Dong
North Melbourne +26.5 / Western Bulldogs -26.5
North Melbourne’s extremely tough draw has resulted in three straight losses (to West Coast, Geelong and GWS) and this week they face the reigning premiers – that’s cruel.
The Dogs and Roos had two close battles in 2016 with the Roos winning one by 16 points and the Dogs taking the other by 14 points.
This is a big line so, based on last year’s results, I’m taking North to stay within the 26.5 points.
North Melbourne +26.5 points – Dusty, Big O, Moose Dogs, TRM
Western Bulldogs -26.5 points – Hollywood, Shan, Ding Dong
Melbourne -17.5 / Fremantle +17.5
The Dees flying start has been stalled after a loss to Geelong and ongoing issues with suspension (Jordan Lewis and Jesse Hogan) and injuries including big Max Gawn for 12 weeks.
Freo in Melbourne worries me but on the back of their win over the Dogs last week I think they can stay within the 17.5 point line against a weakened Demons side.
Melbourne -17.5 points –Big O, Moose Dogs, TRM, Ding Dong
Fremantle +17.5 points – Dusty, Hollywood, Shan
GWS -23.5 / Port Adelaide +23.5
Port’s start to the season has been surprisingly good with good wins over Sydney and Freo and an honourable loss in the Showdown last week. They’re up against flag favourites GWS who are also rolling along quite well.
This match is in Canberra where the Giants smashed Port by 86 points in round 4 last year. Port is going better than they were this time last year but I suspect the Giants will cover the 23.5 point line.
GWS -23.5 points – Dusty, Big O, Moose Dogs, Shan
Port Adelaide +23.5 points – TRM, Hollywood, Ding Dong
Carlton +5.5 / Gold Coast -5.5
Last week I called the Suns “terrible” then they came out and gave the Hawks a beating by 86 points. I also disrespected the Blues by confidently tipping Essendon to cover the big 28.5 point line and the Blues did not just win the line but they won the match. No wonder I scored 2 out of 9 in round 3.
In their only meeting last year the Suns beat the Blues by 54 points. That was in Queensland whereas this week they play in Melbourne but I still expect the Suns to run away with this one.
Carlton +5.5 points – Big O, TRM, Ding Dong
Gold Coast -5.5 points – Dusty, Moose Dogs, Hollywood, Shan
Adelaide -30.5 / Essendon +30.5
The Crows are flying and should win big against the Bombers in Adelaide. Favourites have struggled to cover big lines so far this season so with the line set at 30.5 points it might be the wise choice to take the underdog here but on current form it feels like Adelaide can win big.
Adelaide -30.5 points – Dusty, Moose Dogs, TRM, Hollywood
Essendon +30.5 points – Big O, Shan, Ding Dong
Collingwood +2.5 / St Kilda -2.5
This is the tightest line for round 4. Both teams are sitting on one win and two losses and will be desperate to get their win/loss record back to evens. St Kilda won their only encounter against Collingwood in 2016 by 29 points.
This really feels like a toss-of-the-coin line but purely based on the Pies great 1-point win against the Swans last week I think they can carry that momentum into the match against the Saints.
Collingwood +2.5 points – Dusty, TRM, Hollywood, Shan
St Kilda -2.5 points –Big O, Moose Dogs, Ding Dong
Brisbane +16.5 / Richmond -16.5
Everything is going right for Richmond at the moment. Last week the Eagles kicking kept the Tigers in the match (West Coast were 5 goals and 13 behinds at half time) and then the heavens opened up at the perfect time allowing the Tigers to hold onto a slender lead.
With a 3-0 start to the season the Tigers are putting themselves into a good position to play finals. They need to capitalise on their relatively easy draw and continue to win the games they are expected to win like this one against the Lions. Tigers to cover the 16.5 point line – Hollywood is the only one who likes Brisbane in this line.
Brisbane +16.5 points – Hollywood
Richmond -16.5 points – Dusty, Big O, Moose Dogs, TRM, Shan, Ding Dong
Hawthorn +13.5 / Geelong -13.5
It was always going to be interesting to see how the big off-season changes would impact Hawthorn in 2017 but I don’t think anyone could have predicted the three woeful performances we have seen to date. It would take a brave man to write them off this early in the season but at the moment the new line-up has not clicked for the Hawks.
These two teams have had some classic battles in recent history but it seems like the Cats are the better team in season 2017 and should cover the 13.5 point line this weekend.
Hawthorn +13.5 points – none
Geelong -13.5 points – Dusty, Big O, Moose Dogs, TRM, Hollywood, Shan, Ding Dong
Round 4 results and an updated ladder will be published next week on Footy Inc..
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