Adelaide vs Geelong
Adelaide Oval, 7:50pm (AEDT) Thursday April 4
Ins: Reilly O’Brien
Outs: Sam Jacobs
After injuring his knee in the win over Sydney, Jacobs will remain a ‘week-to-week’ proposition moving forward. Reilly O’Brien gets his first chance since Round 21, 2016. Hugh Greenwood has now played three weeks in the SANFL but remains unable to break into the senior line-up.
Ins: Lachie Henderson
Outs: Jack Henry
Henry injured his hamstring against the Demons and will likely miss two weeks, which gives Henderson his first chance of 2018. Cam Guthrie is a chance to return from calf issue in the VFL.
Prediction: The Crows should get the job done at home. Adelaide by 7.
Melbourne vs Essendon
MCG, 7:50pm (AEDT) Friday April 5
Team News: Both teams are coming off horrible losses but do not expect wholesale changes.
Melbourne will be forced to make at least one change with Steven May injuring his groin in the loss to the Cats. Marty Hore could consider himself unlucky to be dropped after his debut and could be called upon to play a role.
Kade Kolodjashnij had a nightmare of a club debut for the Demons but may be considered better for the run. Alex Neal-Bullen has been quiet and will be nervous come selection time with Billy Stretch and Corey Wagner waiting in the wings.
Essendon have no forced changes but Jordan Ridley should come straight back in after he was unlucky to be the only one omitted following the first round. Zac Clarke is a chance to make his Essendon debut to provide assistance in the ruck to help combat Max Gawn.
Mark Baguley is struggling as a small forward and only managed seven disposals, leaving question marks regarding his place in the side. Brandon Zerk-Thatcher will have to wait for his senior debut after suffering a minor ankle injury in the VFL.
Prediction: A lot to play for on Friday night with the loser in serious strife. Melbourne by 19.
Carlton vs Sydney
Marvel Stadium, 1:45pm (AEDT) Saturday April 6
Team News: Carlton will be forced to make at least one change with Charlie Curnow suffering bone bruising in his knee against the Power. He is likely to miss a few weeks. Patrick Kerr and Levi Casboult seem the most logical replacements, although Casboult has been playing as a key defender in the VFL.
Marchbank has recovered from a back injury and may come straight back into the seniors, while Matthew Kennedy starred in the VFL with 30 disposals, five clearances and a goal and may force his way into the line up.
For Sydney, Kieran Jack and Tom McCartin are likely to come in after a few weeks in the NEAFL. Nick Blakey could make way after a quiet start to his career at the Swans, while Ryan Clarke may also make way.
Prediction: Like the Blues here but will play it safe and back the Swans. Sydney by 12.
GWS vs Richmond
GIANTS Stadium, 4:35pm (AEDT) Saturday April 6
Team News: Josh Kelly will make his long awaited return for the Giants but Callan Ward (knee) and Toby Greene (calf soreness) are likely to miss at least another week.
Sam Taylor will likely miss after he suffered hamstring tightness in the loss to the Eagles. Shane Mumford is a chance to replace Dawson Simpson after a club-imposed suspension.
For Richmond, Jack Riewoldt will miss a month following a wrist injury in Thursday night’s loss. Josh Caddy has recovered from an ankle injury and may return, while Noah Balta may also be called upon after he was omitted following the first round.
Oleg Markov struggled in his first senior game of the year and may be replaced by Ryan Garthwaite if the Tigers want another key defender.
Prediction: GWS have won their last three games against Richmond in Sydney. This trend is likely to continue against a Tigers line up missing several key players. GWS by 30.
Brisbane vs Port Adelaide
GABBA, 7:25PM (AEDT) Saturday April 6
Team News: The Lions do not look set to make any changes after a stirring come-from-behind win against North Melbourne. Lewis Taylor and Allen Christensen will likely have to bide their time in the NEAFL.
For the Power, Karl Amon suffered a medial strain to his knee against Carlton, while Jack Watts suffered a broken leg and dislocated ankle. Both players will spend multiple weeks on the sidelines.
Ollie Wines is set to return from a shoulder injury suffered while water skiing, while; Hamish Hartlett is the most likely to be called upon to replace Watts.
Prediction: With Wines’ return, the Power’s midfield looks slow on paper. Brisbane by 23.
Collingwood vs West Coast
MCG, 7:25PM (AEDT) Saturday April 6
Team News: Taylor Adams will play his first game of the year for Collingwood after suffering a finger injury in the preseason but after a big win it is difficult to pick who goes out. Travis Varcoe was quiet with five disposals but had a big impact on the game.
Mason Cox successfully appealed his suspension on Tuesday night and will take his place in the side.
For the Eagles, Andrew Gaff has served his suspension and will return and Jamie Cripps looks set to return after getting through a WAFL game unscathed.
Former Pie, Josh Smith is likely to make way for Gaff, while Venables or Petruccelle will make way for Cripps. Petrucelle looks more likely to keep his spot at this stage.
Prediction: Collingwood will want to reverse the fate of the Grand Final. Collingwood by 21.
Western Bulldogs vs Gold Coast
Marvel Stadium, 2:20pm (AEDT) Sunday April 7
Team News: These sides do not look set to make many changes following two important wins on the weekend.
For the Bulldogs, Bailey Williams will likely come back in after being a late withdrawal on the weekend. His replacement, Lewis Young, will likely be the one who makes way.
George Horlin-Smith missed the win over Fremantle with back tightness and will need to pass a fitness test to play at either level this weekend.
Prediction: The Bulldogs are back. Western Bulldogs by 40.
Hawthorn vs North Melbourne:
MCG, 3:20 (AEDT) Sunday April 7
Team News: Shaun Burgoyne and Liam Shiels both suffered hamstring injuries in the loss to the Bulldogs and will miss several weeks. Young midfielders Harrison Jones and Dylan Moore might be in line to replace them.
Conor Nash has been quiet, leaving the door open for Mitchell Lewis to potentially replace him.
For the Kangaroos, Trent Dumont was a late withdrawal last week and will need to pass a fitness test to return to action this week. Jed Anderson is ready to go but it is unclear if his return will be at AFL or VFL level.
Sam Wright has recovered from a quad injury and may come straight back in. Paul Ahern will get his chance at the higher level sooner rather than later.
Shaun Atley and Jy Simpkin look under the most pressure to hold their spots.
Prediction: North Melbourne are a step below the level at the moment. Hawthorn by 15.
Fremantle vs St Kilda
Optus Stadium, 5:20pm (AEDT) Sunday April 7
Team News: The Dockers looked unbalanced against the Suns and may need to drop one of their tall forwards for Brandon Matera. Sean Darcy could also be omitted, giving Rory Lobb a chance to play in the ruck.
Daniel Mckenzie, Luke Dunstan and Blake Acres need to lift their output to warrant a permanent place in the St Kilda line up. Hunter Clark should come back in at the expense of one of the trio.
Prediction: Fremantle are a different team at home. Fremantle by 30.