If Round 17 was Christmas in July, there aren't enough adjectives to describe the potential codswallop Round 18 promises to serve up.

Last week was billed as one of the 'greatest' home and away rounds in AFL history, but the feature matches produced margins of 67, 47 49 and 29 points - unexpected, sure, but hardly edge of your seat stuff.

A Sunday afternoon thriller between Richmond and North Melbourne could not even see it reach the pre-round billing - it was not a great round of footy.

Well, this weekend, expect the cameramen at each of the nine games to zoom in on the odd fan enjoying a yawn, as there is not much at stake in Round 18 for the majority of sides, heaping a weight of support behind those pundits that want a shorter season.

The only games that are shaping up to be close contests are Geelong v Adelaide and Carlton v Richmond - and the latter features two sides short on quality, and neither will make the finals, if truth be told.

That means the quality of the round lies in the, err, (capable) hands of Simonds Stadium to produce a quick-paced, highly skilled contest.

Considering Geelong is set to cop a shower and the usual Corio Bay breeze on Saturday, the Cats and the Crows are likely to slog out an old-fashioned game of footy.

Now, for the rubbish games.

North Melbourne will undertake training on Saturday at Etihad Stadium, and will have some witches hats in place should Melbourne decide to show up (Etihad on their GPS shows up as somewhere in the Middle East).

Collingwood, likewise, have taken their training for the week to Sydney, where they will entertain a pack of GWS teenagers on how to undertake a basic skills session, all the while gazing at their tattooed physiques up on the big screen.

Sydney have chosen the Gold Coast as their destination of choice for their bye weekend, and their game for the weekend will be titled, 'Get the ball off baldy'.

Fremantle are trekking across to Port Adelaide, to show South Australians why no-one likes Ross Lyon.

Those people that don't like Lyon the most will be on hand to watch the Western Bulldogs lose a little bit more spirit and hope, when they take on finals fancies St Kilda.

Finally, summing up the weekend's action, West Coast will receive 48 'too-high' free-kicks in a thrashing win over the Brisbane Lions.

How's that for optimism?


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