After a Cinderella premiership in 2016 the Western Bulldogs are tipped to make a winning start to the new season against a Collingwood side under the pump before a ball has been kicked anger.
The Bulldogs have won four straight against Collingwood and despite an indifferent pre-season are a clear favourite, there may however be some value in the Pies at the line.
When the teams met last the Bulldogs won by just three points and that was at Etihad Stadium, the MCG venue will suit the Pies who should be able to be at very worst competitive.
Just remember that the Bulldogs have a liking to The ‘G as their crowning glory was at this venue back in October while they also had to knock off Hawthorn there two weeks prior to that.
Pies midfielder Adam Treloar was outstanding in two games against the Bulldogs in 2016. In the first clash he had 31 disposals in the heavy loss and had a match high 35 when they clashed for a second time.
Look at Treloar in the Group A most disposals market.
We think UNDER 175.5 points ($1.91 @Bet 365).
When these two teams last clashed at the MCG in Round 10 last year there were just 127 points were scored and after a week of rain in Melbourne, coupled with the intensity that Round 1 delivers, expect scoring stocks to be at a premium.
Another value bet that we’ve identified is the Pies at the Line (+15.5). Don’t be afraid to have something on them as we think they will give the Doggies a run for their money. If you fancy the Pies with the start then take $1.91 with Unibet.
THE MATCH TIP: WESTERN BULLDOGS
SUGGESTED BET: TOTAL POINTS OVER/UNDER - UNDER 175.5
MARGIN: WESTERN BULLDOGS UNDER 39.5 POINTS
If you ask most footy fans to name a side who could break into the finals in 2017 the answer is likely to be Melbourne or St Kilda.
The Saints finished 9th last year with Dee’s 11th, but both teased and excited their long-suffering supporters for what the future holds.
The game is the definition of an ‘eight point game’ with both sides showing encouraging signs in the pre-season.
While both clubs would go into this one with hopes, the Saints produce their best footy at Etihad and it has been and it has been a nightmare venue for the ‘Red and the blue.”
Melbourne has lost a staggering 23 of their 24 games at Etihad Stadium, the only win in that stage was against a GWS side still finding their way.
Punters are very much with the Saints, on Monday you could swim in $1.95 about them but they are now set to start a clear and deserved favourite.
St Kilda has a tough start to the season and will be desperate to make a winning start to the season.
While we think the Demons have a class edge in the middle, the Saints forward line is going to win them plenty of games this season and this could well be one of them.
Emerging superstar Jesse Hogan booted seven goals against St Kilda when the teams met at Etihad Stadium in Round 6 last year, despite the fact his side was on the end of a 41-point hiding.
Hogan has looked terrific in the pre-season, not only looking leaner and stronger, but most importantly with an improved goal kicking technique.
Backing him for most goals throughout the season should be extremely profitable.
THE MATCH TIP: ST KILDA
SUGGESTED BET: WINNING MARGIN: ST KILDA 1-39
1ST GOALSCORER: JESSE HOGAN
After losing the Grand Final last year Sydney look in great shape to go one better in 2017 and Port Adelaide will most likely be on the receiving end Round 1.
If not for Buddy Franklin copping an early knock that put him off his game and an uncharacteristic lack of composure in the third quarter, we could be talking about the Swans as reigning premiers.
The Swans are primed to have a big 2017, so much so that they are our early premiership pick.
The ‘Bloods’ will make a winning start against a Port Adelaide team who simply have not measured up to expectations in the last two years.
To say the Swans have the wood over the Power would be an understatement. We know that Sydney love the tough style that is suited to the SCG and it is a game style that the Power have had no answer for.
Since Round 17 in 2006, Sydney has won 13 of their last 14 against Port Adelaide and Port Adelaide has lost seven straight at the SCG.
When the teams met last the Swans prevailed 14.16.100 to 4.9.33 and we anticipate a similar story in Port struggling to score and the Swans spreading the workload and winning comfortably. The line of 24.5 initially looks high, however, when you break it down that only requires the Swans winning each quarter by a goal, something they should have no trouble doing.
Last time the Swans played Port the Sydney midfield had a day out with all the big guns Luke Parker (39), Dan Hannebery (36), Josh Kennedy (30) racking up plenty of disposals.
There is money to be made sticking with them and backing them each to gain 30 or more disposals and taking their respective over and under lines.
THE MATCH TIP: SYDNEY
SUGGESTED BET: SWANS -24.5 (LINE)
MARGIN: SYDNEY OVER 15.5
The banned Bombers are back in a hugely anticipated game.
Arguably the hardest team to assess this season is the Bombers, we all know what they have been through, but a new season brings new hope for supporters as they welcome back their stars.
There has been equally as much talk about the Hawks, they traded Sam Mitchell and Jordan Lewis, who ran the quinella in the club’s best and fairest last year and have replaced them with younger models in Tom Mitchell and young star Jaeger O’Meara.
For mine though, there is a terrific betting opportunity with the Hawks, plenty of experts are expecting the Bombers to come out and make a statement by blowing them away, however, for mine the Hawks are ready for another genuine crack at the premiership in 2017.
Hawthorn will have a potent forward line as they welcome back inspirational skipper Jarryd Roughead and enigmatic former Tiger Tyrone Vickery.
Hawthorn has won seven of their last eight matches against the Hawks and won seven games at the MCG last season.
Hawthorn star Grant Birchall produces some of best footy against the Bombers.
When the teams met in one game last season he racked up 30 touches and represents terrific value for him getting the most disposals from the eight players listed in Group B.
A good play might be his over 22.5 disposals at $1.88 with several bookmakers.
THE MATCH TIP: HAWTHORN
SUGGESTED BET: HAWTHORN UNDER 39.5 POINTS - MARGIN
1ST GOALSCORER: JACK GUNSTON