#14 Jordan Ridley - this AFL thing is pretty easy


#1

Jordan Ridley
Image Source: Oakleigh Chargers

Club: Oakleigh Chargers/Vic Metro

DOB: 20/10/1998

Height: 192cm

Weight: 79kg

Position: Utility

IN SHORT

– Flexible player who can play multiple positions

– Strong overhead

– High efficiency user of the ball

– Athletic

– Possesses a great attitude

TAC CUP STATS

U18 CHAMPS STATS

The Oakleigh Chargers’ “three-peat” is alive and well after it defeated the highly fancied North Ballarat on Sunday to reach a Preliminary Final, but it may have to continue its journey without one of the club’s brightest prospects in Jordan Ridley. The tall utility suffered a nasty shoulder injury in the final quarter and immediately left the ground, but the setback won’t hurt his draft chances after two impressive finals performances.

ABOUT

Jordan Ridley had been identified as a player of interest by the Chargers after growing 20cm from age 14 to 16, and was given his first TAC Cup opportunity in Round 6 last year due to the squad being depleted by representative commitments. The Box Hill High School student made an immediate impact forward by kicking 14 goals in his first five games, including a six-goal haul against Queensland. Once top age players started returning from Vic Metro and school football, Ridley’s role began to change and led to less opportunity. Unfortunately, he missed out on a position in Oakleigh’s successful Grand Final side, but still earned admiration internally with his passion, determination and willingness to improve.

2016 has seen Ridley become one of the most flexible players in the TAC Cup, with Chargers coach Mick Stinear willing to throw the 192cm utility to all parts of the ground. His early season form was strong enough to earn a spot in the Vic Metro squad and he was eventually rewarded with games against the Allies and Western Australia to finish the carnival. His best performance came against the former at Etihad Stadium, where he gathered 18 disposals, mostly from defence, and operated at an impressive 94% efficiency. A monster contested mark on the wing also had recruiters searching for their notepad and pens, as the Knox Football Club product showcased his aerial prowess on the big stage.

Ridley returned to Oakleigh’s side for the heritage game against Dandenong and added another promising string to his bow by rotating through the midfield. He appeared to tower over his midfield opponents at the stoppages and provided some clean ground level touches. Ridley has since settled down back where he has played as the extra man or defensively deep on both tall and small opposition. While he has been consistent throughout 2016 and shown many AFL convertible attributes, it wasn’t until the Elimination Final against Calder that he produced his breakout moment. In a roaming role behind the ball, Ridley gathered 28 possessions, 12 marks and disposed of the ball at 93% efficiency. He was backing that outing up nicely in the Semi Final last Sunday with 22 possessions, before going down with that poorly timed shoulder injury.

STRENGTHS

Jordan Ridley has proven on numerous occasions that his flexibility has the potential to be a great asset at the top level. He has demonstrated that he possesses genuine attributes forward, in defence and through the midfield. He is athletic, clean and extremely skilful by foot, which is going to help you in most positions. Up forward, he has strong hands, leads hard to space and is capable of kicking multiple goals. In defence, he is calm, reads the ball superbly in flight and his teammates love giving him possession due to a very reliable right foot. Ridley looks to possess a strong endurance base judged purely on his ability to work hard into space and provide a constant link up option when his side rebounds. On limited stoppage exposure, Ridley is one touch below his knees, holds position and is capable of releasing creative handballs to outside runners from pressure situations. In the air he is very confident overhead and will back himself to clench the ball no matter how large a pack. By all reports he also has an outstanding attitude toward his football, which creates further confidence he’ll easily cope with the rigours of professional sport.

WEAKNESSES

One thing I love about Ridley is that I rarely find myself writing a negative thought when watching him live, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t improvement and aspects to work on. While the attributes are there for all to see, there hasn’t been enough complete performances for him to be regarded a top draft prospect. At this current stage of his development, he appears very outside oriented and that is most likely by direction. He will occasionally sit off a contested ground situation and back his teammate to distribute the ball out, but there are times when he could provide greater help and protection. As stated earlier he has shown to have inside traits, but I need further proof to be totally convinced and that includes increasing an average tackle count of 1.68 per game. He is an adaptable height at 192cm, but might be thought of as slightly in between to be key position, especially considering it may take a number of preseasons to fill out his 79kg frame.

POTENTIAL

In the modern era of list management and squad balance, 190cm+ prospects with the ability to play multiple positions and roles are seen as gold. Jordan Ridley certainly fits that mould, but he also possesses the potential to become a quality performer in a specialised category if need be. There is the possibility he becomes that big bodied midfielder that clubs crave, but it is difficult not imagining him intercepting and rebounding behind the ball at AFL level. One thing for sure is that he’s more likely to make it than not due to his adaptable attributes, making him a rare low risk selection with scope. I personally have him pushing toward the top end of the second round, but that shoulder injury may have halted his capacity to rise further if he can’t get back on the field in 2016. He was arguably one more impressive final away from breaking into some top 20 lists, but nonetheless has given recruiters much to ponder.


#2

Longest arms in the comp!

I see Jake Lever all over him.

Will be the surprise of this draft.


#3

If Albert and benfti aren’t happy, then I’m happy.


#4
Just watched the long version of his highlights (AFL draft hub).

Fark me. This guy marks everything. Then seems to be pretty handy and mobile at ground level.

Happy with this pick.

Agree, hadn’t paid much attention but he looks all class


#5

The honest ■■■■


#6

Draft Watch


#7

Jordan Ridley v Allies (2016 Under 18 Championships)


#8

??


#9

Draft Watch: Oakleigh’s Jordan Ridley

The versatility of Oakleigh Chargers key-position player Jordan Ridley is one of his biggest strengths in the eyes of AFL recruiters.

The 192cm Knox product was turned from a forward into a defender for the 2016 TAC Cup season by Chargers head coach Mick Stinear and flourished in his new role.

Ridley averaged 19 disposals and six marks per game in 16 TAC Cup matches (while still kicking nine goals), and also represented Vic Metro in two games at the NAB AFL U18 Championships – enjoying a break-out 18-disposal, seven-mark performance in a victory over the Allies in Round 4.

taccup.com.au talked to Ridley at the recent NAB AFL Draft Combine, where he recorded the best score in the kicking test.

How have you been selling yourself as a footballer to AFL clubs in interviews at the Combine?

“I think I’m pretty versatile. I think I use the ball pretty well and I’m really trying to emphasise the work I’m doing off the field as well as on the field – extra gym, extra running and I’m seeing some specialist coaches for running and body work.”

What is the strangest question you’ve been asked by an AFL club?

“I’ve had to count backwards by sevens from six-hundred-and-something and spell ‘octopus’ backwards.”

How do you think your year turned out relative to your pre-season expectations?

“My goals were just to get drafted, I wanted to become a premiership player with Oakleigh – but that didn’t work out – and make the Vic Metro team, but I didn’t really think I’d end up being here (at the Combine). (I used missing out on Oakleigh’s 2015 premiership as a driving force this year), especially over the pre-season. I was a bit conflicted after the final siren (last year); I was really happy to see all my mates get that success, but I was pretty shattered I wasn’t lucky enough to be a part of it. That sort of kept me going through the pre-season.”

How do you think you handled your shift from being a forward to a defender?

“I wasn’t a fan of it at first; I really wanted to stick in the forward line. I guess towards the end of the season, I really adapted well to it. It’s probably my preferred position now. It was Mick (Stinear’s idea). He said he’d like to show clubs that I’m pretty versatile. I initially thought it was just going to be for one or two of the practice games so I wasn’t too fazed by it, but it’s been pretty much the whole season.”

What do you think was your best performance of the year individually?

“(The U18 Champs match against the Allies) would have been my best Vic Metro game. For the Chargers, it’d probably be the Elimination Final win against Calder (28 disposals, 12 marks, five rebound-50s).”

Which opponents caught your eye or were particularly difficult to play on this year?

“(Murray’s) Todd Marshall isn’t really what you’d expect from a big key forward; he’s really skilful and pretty mobile. I think he surprised us all with a few of the things he did.”

Talk about why you think your teammates at the Combine are so highly rated.

  • Josh Daicos: “He’s a nippy small forward, does some pretty special things and has a bit of X-factor about him. He’s very fast, gets out of tight spaces pretty well and is a good snap at goal which I guess comes with the Daicos name.”
  • Taylin Duman: “He plays half back like myself. He’s a very composed ball-user, racks up plenty of the footy and he’s pretty versatile, impacting the game wherever he plays.”
  • Pat Kerr: “He had a really good national carnival and ended up as the All Australian full forward. He has a good pair of hands, is really good on the lead and he’s probably one of the best kicks I’ve seen.”
  • Sam McLarty: “He’s out with his shoulder at the moment. He’s a massive unit, a really good intercept-marking defender and great pack-mark. That’s probably the highlight of his game – his contested marking and competitiveness.”

If you weren’t possibly going to become a full-time footballer, what would you be doing in life in the next few years?

“Probably trying to study to be an engineer.”

Who’s your tip for the no.1 NAB AFL Draft pick?

“I’d have to say (North Ballarat’s) Hugh McCluggage. He’s had an unreal season. Goalkicking midfielders are gold in the AFL these days.”


#10

Can we trade him in a few years to Freo for the next Scott Lucas and Matty Lloyd?


#11

Looks like a super skinny Langford


#12

Riddles!!! Great name!!!


#13

Thats a super write up! Thanks to who ever wrote that.


#14

Can take a mark and is great with the footy in hand. Welcome


#15

Welcome to the Dons Riddles.
Loved that big pack mark in the highlights, and most importantly he is a good ball user. Sounds like a safe pick.


#16

Genuine WTF with this pick but welcome to the club Riddles.


#17

Got a good feeling about Riddles.
Think he’ll be a good pick.


#18

Who did Dodoro say he reminded him of?


#19
Who did Dodoro say he reminded him of?

Was it Neale Daniher?


#20