Matthew Rhys gaining on Sterling K. Brown at 2018 Emmys: Upset in the making for Best Drama Actor?

As more and more Emmy Experts from major media outlets pipe in with their Best Drama Actor predictions, Matthew Rhys (“The Americans”) continues to narrow the lead between himself and frontrunner Sterling K. Brown (“This Is Us”). Last month when 13 Experts were making their predictions, eight picked Brown and four chose Rhys, with Jeffrey Wright (“Westworld”) getting the last vote. Now, a whopping 17 Experts have chimed in and while a leading nine still have Brown and one goes for Wright, the remaining seven all think that Rhys will prevail. Who’s right?

SEE 2018 Emmy nominations complete list: All the nominees for the 70th Emmy Awards

The nine Experts backing Brown are Debra Birnbaum (Variety), Debbie Day (Rotten Tomatoes), Joyce Eng (Gold Derby), Chris Harnick (E), Matthew Jacobs (HuffPo), Robert Rorke (New York Post), Anne Thompson (Indiewire), Peter Travers (Rolling Stone) and Adnan Virk (ESPN). Brown plays family man Randall Pearson on NBC’s “This Is Us,” who in Season 2 dealt with such storylines as grieving the death of his biological father (Emmy nominee Ron Cephas Jones) and becoming a new foster parent.

Meanwhile, these seven Experts believe that Rhys will pull off the upset on Emmy night: Kerr Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes), Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine), Ben Travers (Indiewire), Ken Tucker (Yahoo), Glenn Whipp (LA Times) and Susan Wloszczyna (Gold Derby). After six seasons playing Russian spy Philip Jennings on FX’s “The Americans,” Rhys is hoping to take home his first career Emmy for the series finale, titled “START.”

The remaining Expert is Eric Deggans (NPR), who goes out on a limb for Wright for his role as robotic host Bernard on HBO’s “Westworld.” In his episode submission “The Passenger,” Wright proves why he made the jump from supporting (where he was nominated last year) to lead as Bernard comes to realize several truths about the people around him.

When our 17 Experts’ predictions are combined together, Brown earns leading 1/1 racetrack odds with Rhys in second place at 8/5 odds. Following those two frontrunners, there’s a big drop-off on the Experts’ chart with Wright at 14/1 odds, Milo Ventimiglia (“This Is Us”) at 50/1 odds, Jason Bateman (“Ozark”) at 80/1 odds and Ed Harris (“Westworld”) at 80/1 odds.

PREDICT the Emmy winners now; change them until September 17

Be sure to make your Emmy predictions today so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before winners are announced on September 17. Be sure to also predict winners for the Creative Arts ceremonies slated for September 8 and 9. And join in the fun debate over the 2018 Emmy taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our television forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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