Round 5 of the 2017 AFL season – the ANZAC round – has some important match ups that could really shape the season, but let’s recap on round 4 first.

We picked 8/9 last week including the upset Fremantle victory over Melbourne. The one we didn’t pick was St Kilda getting up against Collingwood.

Collingwood coach, Nathan Buckley (above), came under heavy scrutiny after the loss due to the fact that Scott Pendelbury, Collingwood’s captain and star player, was sat on the bench for 14 minutes during the third quarter when the game was up for grabs.

The Pies swear the captain was/is 100% fit…so why keep your best player on the bench in a winnable match early in the season?

In other matches, the Suns and Freo made it back to wins, while Sydney and Hawthorn slumped to 4-0 to start the season.

Read on to find our expert tips and best bets for round 5 of the 2017 AFL Premiership season.

Please be aware that these are our early picks prior to team announcements on Thursday night and final teams for Sunday and the ANZAC day clash on Tuesday. Odds may also change significantly depending on any major selection shocks and pending MRP suspensions.

Check back later in the week and on Tuesday morning for any late mail changes to our round 5 picks and betting tips, after we’ve assessed all final team lists.

All odds are with Sportsbet – our No. 1 rated bookmaker. New signups can claim a $501* bonus bet with Sportsbet by clicking HERE.

Port Adelaide ($1.15) v Carlton ($5.50)

Port lost to the red hot Giants on the weekend but were right in the game for three quarters. Paddy Ryder will be back in the side this week and Port will be better with him in the side.

Carlton were smashed by the Suns last week with the scoreline flattering in the end after the Blues kicked a few late goals. The margin should’ve been 50 points.

Port will have a comfortable win back at home this week and make light work of the Blues.

Expect Port to cover the -32.5 line.

Port Adelaide by 45.

Western Bulldogs ($1.13) v Brisbane ($6.05)

The Bulldogs just came away with the four points against the Roos last week and will be looking to put in an improved effort this week.

Brisbane were outclassed by Richmond at the Gabba but we think their style matches up better against the Bulldogs.

Expect this to be a competitive game for three quarters with the Bulldogs running over the top of the Lions in the final term to cruise to a comfortable win.

Western Bulldogs by 32.

Gold Coast ($4.95) v Adelaide ($1.18)

The Suns were good against the Blues on the weekend with their captain, Tom Lynch, booting seven goals for the match.

What can we say about Adelaide? Their performances continue to speak for themselves and if Tex and Betts kick 12 goals between them in any game, they won’t lose.

As if playing Adelaide wasn’t a tough enough task for the Suns, they will have to do so without Steven May who is out with a hamstring injury.

Tex Walker will have another big game and Adelaide will bring the Suns crashing back to Earth this week and have a big win.

Adelaide by 70.

Sydney ($2.96) v Greater Western Sydney ($1.40)

GWS put Port to the sword in the final term last week and ended up with a 41 point win against quality opposition.

Sydney’s woes continued with a 26 point loss to West Coast last Thursday night.

We all know the Swans are missing some experienced players, but that’s no excuse for the players on the field to be lacking intensity.

GWS should have a good win here and the Swans will slip to 5-0 to start the season. Crazy.

GWS by 38.

Fremantle ($1.48) v North Melbourne ($2.66)

We tipped Freo to win last week against the under-manned Demons and the young Dockers didn’t let us down.

North Melbourne (again!) were desperately unlucky to lose another close game to the Dogs in what we predicted to be a very close match.

We think this will be another close one for the Roos but we think they’ll come away with their first win of the season over in the west. Tipping the upset.

North Melbourne by 14.

St Kilda ($2.80) v Geelong ($1.44)

The Saints are a hard team to read this year and their performance against Collingwood didn’t make things any easier. They were average, but the Pies were worse.

Geelong (4-0) are getting better each week and they smashed the Hawks in the second half on Easter Monday, in what have traditionally been great games between the two powerhouse sides.

Geelong will have another comfortable win here and move to 5-0 to start the season.

Geelong by 44.

Hawthorn ($3.18) v West Coast ($1.36)

The Hawks are no longer the same brilliant Hawks we have witnessed over the past 10 years. They are struggling…big time.

West Coast are doing enough to win games but still have a lot of upside and they get a chance to find it here against a limp Hawthorn side.

We’ll tip West Coast to win this one with the Hawks slipping to 0-5 to start the season.

West Coast by 50.

Richmond ($1.70) v Melbourne ($2.16)

Richmond had a good win over the Lions at the Gabba on the weekend with new recruit, Dion Prestia, playing his best game for his new club.

The Demons went down narrowly to Fremantle but will get back star forward Jesse Hogan this week.

This is looking like one of the best value picks for the week with Richmond at the current odds of $1.70 definitely being overs.

We’ll pick Richmond to continue their unbeaten start to the season and have a good win against the Demons.

Richmond by 34.

Essendon ($2.19) v Collingwood ($1.68)

The traditional ANZAC Day blockbuster.

Essendon’s comback players will relish the 10-day break after looking pretty flat against the Crows on Saturday night. Gleeson, Francis, and Hocking are all a chance to come into the side this week.

Collingwood continued their poor start to the season in losing a winnable game to the Saints last week. The pressure is mounting on coach Nathan Buckley who will need his troops to play with desperation and the will to win on ANZAC Day.

This is a real 50/50 match, and for that reason we’ll take the value option of Essendon to win a close one with no real confidence.

Best betting option for this game might be the tri bet of either team to win by less than 14.5 points (odds not available yet).

Essendon by 8.

Once again, all odds are with Sportsbet – our No. 1 rated bookmaker. New signups can claim a $501* bonus bet with Sportsbet by clicking HERE.

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