AFL Predictions and Picks – Round 14, 2020
My AFL Round 14 picks are in, and I think it’s safe to say that this week’s round of matches will be red hot.
It’s crunch time for many teams as we approach the premiers. Ladder leaders Port Adelaide are looking to close off their final two games of the minor with a big performance, while there are teams such as Carlton looking to elbow their way into contention for a shot at the finals.
Let’s start with a key game between Hawthorn Hawks and Essendon Bombers, and work our way through the rest of the matches.
All odds below are taken from Betway – one of our top sites for AFL betting.
Hawthorn Hawks (+120) vs. Essendon Bombers (-150)
The Hawks clash with the Bombers at Adelaide Oval, hoping to get back on the horse following a rough few weeks.
Despite a decent start to their campaign, things have gone south for Hawthorn. Last week, they lost again in a close one against Port Adelaide. But they can take confidence in knowing that the Bombers —who shipped a 12-point loss to Richmond in Round 13 — are also in a precarious situation.
Bombers star Joe Daniher is back this week, in the news that will surely lift the spirits of the Essendon fanbase. Cale Hooker and Conor McKenna return to the fold, too, which will feel like something of a kick in the nuts for their opposition.
Hawthorn’s injury concerns keep piling up and they could be without key players for this must-win clash. Unfortunately, it looks like 2020 will be a year to forget for Hawthorn, and I can’t see the Dons helping.
Essendon Bombers -6.5 Points-110
Richmond Tigers (-125) vs. West Coast Eagles (+100)
The Tigers take on the Eagles at the Metricon Stadium fresh off the back of a nice win over the Bombers.
Yes, they will have been happy enough with that victory, but they will feel they left plenty of points on the pitch. Against West Coast, Richmond will not be afforded such chances and will need to ensure they are less profligate with their opportunities.
Tom Lynch will be available for the Tigers, having been cleared on Monday. There will also be a place for debutant Thomson Dow, who will play opposite Eagles rookie Bailey Williams.
The Eagles looked solid against GWS last week and will be targeting a ninth win on the bounce. That said, this marks their first appearance outside of Perth in what seems like forever, and this could affect their chances.
This should be a tight encounter that could go either way, but I’ll take Richmond to sneak it.
Richmond Tigers to Win-125
Western Bulldogs (+150) vs. Geelong Cats (-188)
The Bulldogs host the Cats at the Metricon on Friday, in what should be a great game of footy.
Having put Melbourne to the sword in Round 13, Western can make the finals with a win over the Cats. They look in good shape here to get the win and have no injury concerns to speak of.
Geelong got the job done against Wooden Spooners The Crows last week but will be disappointed not to have come away with a more convincing performance. Nothing short of wasteful in attack, the Cats must up their game at the Metricon if they are to deny the Bulldogs.
The line is set at 11 points, and the Bulldogs with a +11 head start makes absolute sense.
Western Bulldogs +11 Points-110
Port Adelaide Power (-600) vs. Sydney Swans (+400)
The Power will be treating their clash against the Swans as nothing less than a must-win at the Adelaide Oval this Saturday.
A steady performance against Hawthorn got the points in the bag in Round 13, and although it wasn’t a superb outing, they got the job done. The ladder leaders have the McClelland in their sights and can move one step closer here with a win.
The Swans will be looking to do much better than their underwhelming efforts against Freemantle last week when they only managed 19 points. Yes, the Power will be without Dan Houston and Peter Ladhams again, but I can’t see that being anything more than a slight confidence booster and hardly anything to get excited by.
Port Adelaide should cover the 27.5-point spread.
Port Adelaide Power -27.5 Points-110
Fremantle Dockers (+137) vs. GWS Giants (-175)
Freemantle Dockers will aim to take it to the GWS Giants at the Optus Stadium on Saturday and will enter as underdogs on the day.
The Dockers managed a convincing 50-19 win over the Swans in Round 13, showcasing some ruthless defense in the process. While I don’t expect Freemantle to contain GWS with such conviction, they will be a threat.
The Giants are coming off a loss to the Eagles last week and will be desperate to bounce back with a win. They will see this contest as one well within their reach, but if they approach the Dockers with anything less than a complete performance, they could be in for a troublesome afternoon.
I’m edging towards Freemantle here, and think they can scrape it. Take them with a head start to be on the safe side.
Freemantle Dockers +8.5 Points-110
Melbourne Demons (+105) vs. St Kilda Saints (-134)
The Demons host the Saints at Traeger Park on Saturday’s evening game.
A huge confidence blow by way of a 32-point loss to the Bulldogs last week will either push Melbourne to a big performance or leave them vulnerable to a St Kilda assault.
The Saints come into this one as minor favorites, and you have to think their encouraging performance against the Lions has something to do with that. Although they were pipped by Brisbane by just two points, there was a lot of pride to take from their collective efforts.
Melbourne needs to win this game to reach the finals, and that will be encouraging in itself. That said, I think St Kilda might have too much for them on the day.
St Kilda Saints to Win-134
Carlton Blues (+110) vs. Collingwood Magpies (-138)
Carlton takes on Collingwood at the Gabba in Sunday’s first match of the round.
The Magpies enter as moderate favorites for this contest, despite the Blues’ resounding 60-27 win over Gold Coast Suns. The turnaround gives Carlton a nine-day rest period, meaning that they will also be revitalized and raring to go.
Steele Sidebottom joins a list of significant absentees for the Pies, and this could really work against them. The Blues are aiming for a shot at the finals for the first time in seven years and will definitely be up for this one.
The value is with Carlton here. There is no doubt about that. I think it might be safe to take the moneyline.
Carlton Blues to Win+110
Gold Coast Suns (-175) vs. North Melbourne (+137)
The Suns take on the Kangaroos as betting favorites this Sunday at the Metricon Stadium.
Carlton had their number last week, so they will need to show something this time around if they are to justify their price here.
One thing that needs to be said is that they have an eight-day turnaround this week having played twice in the matter of four days in Round 13, so that should work in their favor.
The Kangaroos were also a little out of step on Monday, and no one to blame but themselves for their defeat to Collingwood. I don’t see them doing anything spectacular against the Suns, especially with the number of players they won’t have available for this game.
I’ll take Gold Coast minus 8.5 points.
Gold Coast Suns -8.5 Points-110
That’s a Wrap
The 2020 AFL season is beginning to take shape, with key games set to determine who makes the finals and who misses out.
As such, I have factored everything into my picks for AFL Round 14 that matters. Whether I will be spot on with every pick remains to be seen, as we all know just how many curveballs have been thrown our way this year.
I’m looking forward to seeing who rises to the occasion this week.
Good luck with your bets!