Will Melbourne finally play finals in 2018? Picture: Michael Klein
Will Melbourne finally play finals in 2018? Picture: Michael Klein

Run home: Where will your team finish?

AFTER Round 16 there are just two games separating second and ninth.

The race for the top four is wide open, while the likes of North Melbourne (ninth) and Greater Western Sydney (10th) will still fancy their chances of being involved in September action.

And at the other end of the ladder, the wooden spoon fight looks to be a two horse race between Carlton and Gold Coast.

Where will your team finish?

Herald Sun guru Chris Cavanagh looks at every team's run home and gives his ultimate predictions.

 

 

1 RICHMOND POINTS 48 PERCENTAGE 137.8

Rd17 GWS Giants SS (A) W

Rd18 St Kilda ES (A) W

Rd19 Collingwood MCG (H) W

R20 Geelong MCG (H) W

Rd21 Gold Coast MS (A) W

Rd22 Essendon MCG (H) W

Rd23 W. Bulldogs MCG (H) W

BETTING

Flag: $2.75

Top 4: $1.05

Top 8: N/A

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 15th

CAVANAGH SAYS: The Tiger train should build some serious momentum heading into September, with the fourth-easiest draw in the run home and four games at the MCG. The Giants, Pies, Cats and Dons will all throw up challenges but the minor premiership is Richmond's for the taking.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 1st

Can anyone stop the Tigers? Picture: AAP Images
Can anyone stop the Tigers? Picture: AAP Images

2 COLLINGWOOD Points 44 Percentage 122.2

Rd17 West Coast MCG (H) W

Rd18 North Melb MCG (H) W

Rd19 Richmond MCG (A) L

Rd20 Sydney SCG (A) L

Rd21 Bris Lions ES (H) W

Rd22 Port Adel MCG (H) W

Rd23 Fremantle PS (A) W

BETTING

Flag: $7.50

Top 4: $1.90

Top 8: $1.08

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 2nd

CAVANAGH SAYS: The next month should tell us if the Pies are contenders or pretenders. They should beat an Eagles side who traditionally struggle at the MCG and should topple North but the games against top-four fancies Richmond and Sydney are big but a top-four finish looms for the first time since 2012.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 3rd

3 WEST COAST Points 44 Percentage 120.6

Rd17 Collingwood MCG (A) L

Rd18 W. Bulldogs PS (H) W

Rd19 North Melb Hobart (A) W

Rd20 Fremantle PS (H) W

Rd21 Port Adelaide AO (A) L

Rd22 Melbourne PS (H) W

Rd23 Bris Lions Gabba (A) W

BETTING

Flag: $8

Top 4: $1.60

Top 8: $1.08

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 8th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Expect the Eagles to win their final three home games at Perth Stadium and take care of Brisbane and North away. Big test against Collingwood at the MCG though. The club has played just once there this season and has won only six of its past 24 games there.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 5th

West Coast collected a vital win on Sunday against GWS. Picture: Getty Images
West Coast collected a vital win on Sunday against GWS. Picture: Getty Images

4 PORT ADELAIDE Points 44 Percentage 117.6

Rd17 Fremantle PS (A) W

Rd18 GWS Giants AO (H) W

Rd19 W. Bulldogs Ballarat (A) W

Rd20 Adelaide AO (H) W

Rd21 West Coast AO (H) W

Rd22 Collingwood MCG (A) L

Rd23 Essendon AO (H) W

BETTING

Flag: $8.50

Top 4: $1.55

Top 8: $1.05

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 14th

CAVANAGH SAYS: The Power have had some good wins in recent weeks but still haven't done quite enough to convince us it is a flag threat. A favourable run home with four games at Adelaide Oval gives it a launch pad to lock in a top-four spot though, which undoubtedly puts it in the frame.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 2nd

 

5 SYDNEY Points 40 Percentage 118.3

Rd17 North Melb ES (A) W

Rd18 Gold Coast SCG (H) W

Rd19 Essendon ES (A) W

Rd20 Collingwood SCG (H) W

Rd21 Melbourne MCG (A) L

Rd22 GWS Giants SS (A) W

Rd23 Hawthorn SCG (H) W

BETTING

Flag: $9

Top 4: $1.50

Top 8: $1.03

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 3rd

CAVANAGH SAYS: Not too many easy kills here for the Swans and although they only have four games at the SCG they only have a 4-4 record at that former fortress this year. Injuries are also mounting but a top-four finish is still well within reach, something they weren't able to achieve last season after a 0-6 start to the year.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 4th

6 MELBOURNE Points 36 Percentage 127.8

Rd17 W. Bulldogs MCG (H) W

Rd18 Geelong GMHBA (A) L

Rd19 Adelaide AO (A) L

Rd20 Gold Coast MCG (H) W

Rd21 Sydney MCG (H) W

Rd22 West Coast PS (A) L

Rd23 GWS Giants MCG (H) W

BETTING

Flag: $11

Top 4: $4.50

Top 8: $1.35

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 13th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Not an easy run home, despite what the Champion Data draw difficulty rating suggests. The Demons should make finals for the first time since 2006, but they still have a lot to prove and can't afford many more slip ups like the one they had against St Kilda in Round 15.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 8th

Where will the Cats finish up in 2018? Picture: Getty Images
Where will the Cats finish up in 2018? Picture: Getty Images

7 GEELONG Points 36 Percentage 123.1

Rd17 Adelaide AO (A) L

Rd18 Melbourne GMHBA (H) W

Rd19 Bris Lions GMHBA (H) W

Rd20 Richmond MCG (A) L

Rd21 Hawthorn MCG (A) W

Rd22 Fremantle GMHBA (H) W

Rd23 Gold Coast GMHBA (H) W

BETTING

Flag: $8.50

Top 4: $4

Top 8: $1.30

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 9th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Firmed for the 8 after their Sydney win on Thursday and if the Cats beat Adelaide away this week then they are back in top four mix. Four games at GMHBA Stadium as well as two at the MCG give the Cats a dream run home and Port Adelaide this week is winnable.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 6th

8 HAWTHORN Points 36 Percentage 118.1

Rd17 Bris Lions Launceston (H) W

Rd18 Carlton ES (A) W

Rd19 Fremantle PS (A) W

Rd20 Essendon MCG (H) L

Rd21 Geelong MCG (H) L

Rd22 St Kilda ES (A) W

Rd23 Sydney SCG (A) L

BETTING

Flag: $21

Top 4: $9

Top 8: $1.80

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 17th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Brisbane this week is no given considering the Hawks lost to the Lions by 56 points in Round 9. However, the Hawks are building some momentum after three straight wins and if they can take the points from their next three they will only need one 'W' from a tougher final month to lock in an eighth finals appearance in nine years.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 7th

Jaeger O’Meara and Jarryd Roughead will play key roles in Hawthorn’s September push. Picture: Getty Images
Jaeger O’Meara and Jarryd Roughead will play key roles in Hawthorn’s September push. Picture: Getty Images

9 NORTH MELBOURNE Points 36 Percentage 116

Rd17 Sydney ES (H) L

Rd18 Collingwood MCG (A) L

Rd19 West Coast Hobart (H) L

Rd20 Bris Lions The Gabba (A) W

Rd21 W. Bulldogs ES (H) W

Rd22 Adelaide AO (A) L

Rd23 St Kilda ES (A) W

BETTING

Flag: $34

Top 4: $9

Top 8: $2

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 16th

CAVANAGH SAYS: The Roos would be licking their lips about the final month, all winnable games. But they will need to pinch at least one win from what shapes as a difficult next three weeks if they are going to be there when the whips are cracking in September. The weekend's percentage-boosting win over Gold Coast helped, but still a lot of work to do.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 9th

10 GWS Points 34 Percentage 11.7

Rd17 Richmond SS (H) L

Rd18 Port Adelaide AO (A) L

Rd19 St Kilda SS (H) W

Rd20 Carlton ES (A) W

Rd21 Adelaide Canberra (H) W

Rd22 Sydney SS (H) L

Rd23 Melbourne MCG (A) L

BETTING

Flag: $34

Top 4: $9

Top 8: $1.90

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 7th

CAVANAGH SAYS: The Giants simply haven't been able to catch a break with injuries this year and Jeremy Cameron (suspended) not returning until Round 20 doesn't help. Yet, Leon Cameron's side is still in the top-eight their finals fate is in their own hands.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 11th

How much will Jeremy Cameron’s absence hurt the Giants? Picture: Getty Images
How much will Jeremy Cameron’s absence hurt the Giants? Picture: Getty Images

11 ADELAIDE Points 28 Percentage 97.4

Rd17 Geelong Adelaide Oval (H) W

Rd18 Bris Lions Gabba (A) W

Rd19 Melbourne AO (H) W

Rd20 Port Adel AO (H) W

Rd21 GWS Giants Canberra (A) L

Rd22 North Melb AO (H) W

Rd23 Carlton ES (A) W

BETTING

Flag: $251

Top 4: $101

Top 8: $4.50

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 4th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Absolutely everything would have to go right for the Crows to make finals now and not much is going their way at the moment with five losses from their past six games and some key players still injured. Expect them to just miss the top eight - a fair fall after last year's Grand Final appearance.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 10th

12 ESSENDON Points 28 Percentage 94.2

Rd17 Gold Coast MS (A) W

Rd18 Fremantle ES (H) W

Rd19 Sydney ES (H) L

Rd20 Hawthorn, MCG (A) W

Rd21 St Kilda, ES (H) W

Rd22 Richmond, MCG (A) L

Rd23 Port Adel, AO (A) L

BETTING

Flag: $101

Top 4: $51

Top 8: $4.50

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 11th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Had to beat Collingwood at the MCG on Sunday to be a finals chance and blew it in the last quarter. Fair chance to miss September by only a game or two, meaning that 2-6 start to the season, which included a loss to Carlton, will come back to bite. Hasn't been the season many expected.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 12th

Can the Dockers finish the year on a high? Picture: Getty Images
Can the Dockers finish the year on a high? Picture: Getty Images

13 FREMANTLE Points 24 Percentage 82.4

Rd17 Port Adel PS (H) L

Rd18 Essendon ES (A) L

Rd19 Hawthorn PS (H) L

Rd20 West Coast PS (A) L

Rd21 Carlton PS (H) W

Rd22 Geelong GMHBA (A) L

Rd23 Collingwood PS (H) L

BETTING

Flag: $1001

Top 4: $501

Top 8: $101

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 1st

CAVANAGH SAYS: Hard to know what to make of the Dockers at times. They have looked good in some games and terrible in others. Clearly not going to make finals and have a difficult draw but five of seven games in Perth is handy as the club looks to put some foundations in place to build on next year.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 14th

14 WESTERN BULLDOGS Points 20 Percentage 74.3

Rd17 Melbourne MCG (A) L

Rd18 West Coast PS (A) L

Rd19 Port Adel Ballarat (H) L

Rd20 St Kilda ES (A) W

Rd21 North Melb ES (A) L

Rd22 Carlton ES (A) W

Rd23 Richmond MCG (A) L

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 6th

CAVANAGH SAYS: The young Dogs have the ability to pull off a couple of upsets, as shown by their fighting two-point win over Geelong in Round 15. But their injury list does not read well, nor does their consistent second-half fadeouts, and four of their seven games are against serious finals contenders.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 13th

Luke Beveridge has hit work cut out at the Dogs. Picture: AAP Images
Luke Beveridge has hit work cut out at the Dogs. Picture: AAP Images

15 ST KILDA Points 14 Percentage 72.6

Rd17 Carlton ES (H) W

Rd18 Richmond ES (H) L

Rd19 GWS Giants SS (A) L

Rd20 W. Bulldogs ES (H) L

Rd21 Essendon ES (A) L

Rd22 Hawthorn ES (H) L

Rd23 North Melb ES (H) L

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 10th

C AVANAGH SAYS: The Saints have been much more competitive over the past month but Carlton is the only game you can pencil in as a win at this stage given they have already played and lost to three of the other six opponents this season and only managed a draw with GWS.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 15th

16 BRISBANE Points 12 Percentage 88.9

Rd17 Hawthorn Launceston (A) L

Rd18 Adelaide, Gabba (H) L

Rd19 Geelong, GMHBA (A) L

Rd20 North Melb Gabba (H) L

Rd21 Collingwood ES (A) L

Rd22 Gold Coast MS (A) W

Rd23 West Coast Gabba (H) L

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 12th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Four of seven games in Queensland and the potential for a few upsets given impressive patches we have seen from the Lions this year. However, a few finals-bound opponents will make it difficult for Chris Fagan's side to better last year's five wins.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 16th

The Brisbane Lions celebrate their win on Saturday. Picture: AAP Images
The Brisbane Lions celebrate their win on Saturday. Picture: AAP Images

17 GOLD COAST Points 12 Percentage 62.7

Rd17 Essendon MS (H) L

Rd18 Sydney SCG (A) L

Rd19 Carlton MS (H) W

Rd20 Melbourne MCG (A) L

Rd21 Richmond MS (H) L

Rd22 Bris Lions, MS (H) L

Rd23 Geelong, GMHBA (A) L

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 5th

CAVANAGH SAYS: With a lengthy injury list headlined by key forward Tom Lynch, who will miss the rest of the season, it is hard to see the Suns scorching many teams in the run home. Coach Stuart Dew will simply be looking to put some foundations in place for next year.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 17th

18 CARLTON Points 4 Percentage 62.2

Rd17 St Kilda ES (A) L

Rd18 Hawthorn ES (H) L

Rd19 Gold Coast MS (A) L

Rd20 GWS Giants ES (H) L

Rd21 Fremantle PS (A) L

Rd22 W. Bulldogs ES (H) L

Rd23 Adelaide ES (H) L

DRAW DIFFICULTY: 18th

CAVANAGH SAYS: Have got the easiest run home with only Hawthorn, GWS and Adelaide in finals contention and five of seven games in Melbourne at Etihad Stadium. But it would take something special for the Blues to win another game, a fifth wooden spoon since 2002 on the way for this once powerful club.

CAVANAGH PREDICTS: 18th

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