Manchester United will hope to shake off the sour taste of their midweek loss to Chelsea in the League Cup while Arsenal's defense will be looking to shake off the shame of giving up five goals to Reading.
Old Trafford; Saturday, 12:45 GMT/8:45 AM ET
After contesting high-profile games of FIFA 13 midweek, United and Arsenal get back to playing actual football first thing Saturday morning. Manchester United still appear to be one of the most clearly flawed elite teams in England but it hasn't made much of a difference in terms of the results so far this season, while both detractors and supporters of the Gunners seem to be waiting for the "real" Arsenal to show themselves. The most likely reality is that United are genuinely flawed in many ways but their strengths are enough to keep them at or near the top, and that this is the real Arsenal. That might be depressing on multiple levels depending on your perspective, but on the plus side it's likely to make for a pretty entertaining match.
Pick: United, 3-2
Craven Cottage; Saturday, 15:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET
Fulham has been an absolute beast at home, while there's something about the way Everton has gone about putting together their (admittedly impressive) record that seems unsustainable. My instincts tell me to go with Fulham but my instincts are terrible, so if you're the betting type you should go all-in on Everton. Me though, I don't like to gamble OR learn from my mistakes, so it's Cottagers all the way!
Pick: Fulham, 2-1
Carrow Road; Saturday, 15:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET
Seems like the humanitarian thing to do would be to give each team a point and not subject anyone to this kind of horror.
Pick: Draw, 1-1
Stadium of Light; Saturday, 15:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET
See above, replace "each team" with "Sunderland" and "a point" with "three points." My goodness there are some terrible games this weekend.
Pick: Sunderland, 1-0
Swansea City vs. Chelsea
Liberty Stadium; Saturday, 15:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET
Remember when Swansea was right up at the top of the table and people pretended like there was an actual chance it could last for more than a month or two? That was kind of cute. Also, remember when Chelsea's streak of being an unquestioned top-team was clearly over? That was pretty cute, too. It's not Swansea is awful or that Chelsea is unbeatable, it's just that people are really bad at overgeneralizations. ALL PEOPLE EVERYWHERE.
Pick: Chelsea, 3-1
White Hart Lane; Saturday, 17:30 GMT/1:30 AM ET
Spurs made five major additions in the summer transfer window. Of those, two of them have been underwhelming (and that's being charitable), one of them is hurt, and one of them has been unable to unseat a 77-year-old man from his position. Spurs are still in 4th, and there is little reason to assume any of the above will persist for long. A reality where Spurs are consistently very good is a strange one indeed.
Pick: Spurs, 3-0
Loftus Road; Sunday 13:30 GMT/8:30 AM ET
So QPR, how's that whole "revolution" thing going? Nothing beats experience, am I right? Yeah, you're doing great.
Seriously, if QPR can't beat Reading at home, they probably ought to be relegated. It would save everyone a whole lot of time and looking at Djibril Cisse's hair.
Pick: QPR, 2-1
Anfield; Sunday 16:00 GMT/11:00 AM ET
This game simultaneously feels very big and very unimportant. To this point in the season, Liverpool hasn't done much to convince that they've made any noticeable improvement, while Newcastle has made a similarly weak case that last year was a sign of things to come, but these are both historically huge clubs with clear aspirations to remain as such. It should be a very entertaining game, so that's a plus, but there's something about this whole thing that's kind of depressing.
Pick: Draw, 2-2
The Hawthorns; 20:00 GMT/3:00 PM ET
I really, truly thought that Southampton was going to do relatively well this season, but as you've likely figured out if you've been reading for very long, I'm not very good at predictions. It turns out that you actually do have to play defense at this level, which is kind of a bummer. West Brom isn't all that good, but they're an annoying kind of mediocre (for other teams at least) with no real exploitable weaknesses; they're just decent enough all the way through, which means they aren't going to lose to bad teams very often.
Pick: West Brom, 3-1