3 first round picks? That’s going to be a fun draft for you!
- Witts and Laird
- Hunter returning to his B&F form after Beveridge gave him consistency in 1 position each week rather than shifting him around every 2nd week
- Getting much more than expected out of Cerra given he had a very limited pre-season.
- Some of the other young guys showing signs
- Rockliff, Greene, Walker, Lobb having little to no pre-season. Lobb was OK; Rocky didn’t fire a shot until mid-season (partly Hinkley related); Tex never got out of 1st gear and Greene basically never got on the park.
- LTIs to Fiorini & Adams
- Gwilty still going unavenged
- Missing victory opportunities against wezza, Vandrs, Dill and Mad Bomber
Last year’s draft was rubbish and was put down to a lack of research and drafting on 2-3 hours of sleep which affected the decision making. I put in a lot more work from mid-season looking at possible players and getting a better grasp of the draft class and options, and I mapped out an ideal world plan pre-draft. Unfortunately I then decided to pull an all-nighter leading into the draft that meant when I went off-plan things went rubbish.
Picks 6 - Adam Cerra - Draft Plan: Cerra. Had him pencilled in him as my probable pick after the AFL draft as I’d expected one of Coffield & Clark to go earlier based on their back status. In the end he was a gut call though, as I’d only seen limited amounts vs. Clark who I’d seen play more. Got more out of him than anticipated, though I’m disappointed Ross halted Cerra’s break-out backline role after 4 games. Keeper.
Pick 14 - Jack Higgins - Plan: Higgins. Also had him pencilled in, but as more of a hopeful than probable pick so I was very happy that he had minimal exposure in pre-season. Had concerns as to how quickly he’d adapt as a more Toby Greene style forward to Richmond’s ultra pressure style, but these have been largely relieved as he rates fairly high in pressure acts. Keeper.
Pick 24 - Bailey Banfield - Plan: Richards/Ling (if available). Ling was still available, but after reviewing things closer, Tom Williamson’s numbers looked better and I was confident I could get him in the next batch. Banfield had burst onto the scenes in the pre-season to demand a spot and with a very young squad filled with fringe players, a more experienced draftee appealed as a plug and play. Performed well - would prefer if he was exclusively a midfield tagger rather than a forward one but hopefully he’ll adapt to the role. Probable keeper
Pick 30 - Dougal Howard - Plan: Spargo. Just rubbish. Worse than that, something shiny rubbish. Had looked into potential best 22 backs with upside and thought they were thin on the ground and would probably be mostly gone by my next lot of picks - Howard had scored 96 in the last JLT, but I also had data predicting it that it was an outlier, which naturally I ignored. I’m not sure the core idea was wrong, but the execution certainly was.
Pick 60 - Robbie Fox - Plan: Best Available. Even bigger rubbish than the last pick. I’d seen the GWS-Swans practice game where he looked good in a new HBF role and he scored well in JLT, but HBF spots were going to be very slim at the Swans, so it had a miniscule chance of coming off. If this wasn’t an experienced back rental, it should’ve been Spargo.
Pick 63 - Tom Williamson - Plan: Williamson. Was ruled out of JLT with a “back spasm” and was expected to be right for Rd 1. Unfortunately, “back spasm” was code for having a hot spot in his back and he ultimately played 2 and a bit quarters for the season. I typically like 7 backs in the keepers so he’s in the mix pending pre-season.
Pick 78 - Charlie Spargo - Plan: Can’t Recall. Very, very lucky to still get Spargo and probably lucky that Allblack was talking up a mystery player he was hoping to grab. Probable keeper.
Pick 96 - Brandon White - Plan: White. Not sure whether it was the Spargo pick or this one that I decided to opt for all youth to try and find an extra keeper to make up for last season. Not sure why White hasn’t had a sufficient run, as the general Saints fan consensus believe he ought to be playing ahead of at least 2 of their current D guys. Will see what pre-season brings.
Pick 114 - Connor Menadue - Plan: Crowden. More poor decision making. Crowden as a draftee was much more likely to go between this pick and my last as a draftee than Menadue who had missed JLT due to injury. Gave Connor another go on the back off his VFL finals series, although he was played out of position he didn’t grasp his opportunity when it was presented this season and at Richmond they have plenty of guys wanting one. As I said at the time Cunico, would’ve been a better option as whilst he and Menadue were both trending C, he had back eligiblity and had played the last JLT game. Fair chance Menadue would’ve gone undrafted.
Pick 131 - Mitch Crowden - Plan: Nobody Specific. Had traded Robbo and Crowden is basically a shorter Robbo clone - scrappy, with a bull at the gate style who loves a tackle. Got stuck in pressure forward corner and lost his form, has been up and down in the WAFL, but should play more games before the end of the year. In the mix.
With no experienced draftees, basically most pick-ups were more experienced types to cover depth holes, or guys getting games to cover the prospect of restings, given almost my entire forward line was 1st and 2nd year guys. I haven’t had my usual system in place for 2 seasons which has meant not knowing a) where players ranked depth wise in their sides and b) whether they were a worthwhile prospect in comparison to others has meant I’ve washed out with most picks, so typically my strongest suit has been poor and I’ll be making sure to get this rectified for next season. Got Aliir & Daicos through luck that others didn’t want them rather than planning - Aliir will make keepers, Daicos is in the mix. Dawson was probably my only real strategic selection and may yet prove worthwhile.
Do I see the side turning things around quickly enough for Rockliff to be part of my next contending side?
Which of the 11 players fighting for bench spots do I trade out?
Will I actually be well rested for a trade week in the first time in years and thus entertain more hard calls?
Brilliant write up.
I may trade them yet! But I have 10 picks inside 4 Rounds so draft time will be like Christmas for me this time around although I’m worried I’ll stuff it up. I can’t go too wrong with my pick 3 tho.
Injury Wrap - Week 1 Finals
Neela vs. Fudge
Reece Conca (ankle dislocation) 1-2 weeks
Zac Fisher (leg fracture) season
Zak Jones (suspension) 2 weeks
Dylan Roberton (heart arrhythmia) season
Matthew Scharenberg (knee - ACL) season
Connor Blakely (knee - cartilage) season
Richard Douglas (ankle) test
Michael Hibberd (quad) 2 weeks
Ben Jacobs (post-concussion syndrome) indefinite
westozziebomber vs. Stoops
Dan Butler (ankle) 2-3 weeks
Ryan Griffen (hamstring) test
Shaun Higgins (knee) 1 week
Kieran Jack (knee - MCL) test
Jarrad McVeigh (collarbone fracture) test
Liam Picken (post-concussion syndrome) season
Aaron Sandilands (calf) TBC
Jarrad Waite (calf) test
David Cuningham (hamstring) season
Tom Cutler (suspension) 1 week
Taylor Garner (hamstring) 1-2 weeks
Jack Graham (shoulder dislocation) 1-2 weeks
Lin Jong (collarbone fracture) test
Matthew Ling (turf toe) season
Jake Lever (knee - ACL) season
Dion Prestia (rib fracture) 1 week
Allblack vs. fogdog
Nat Fyfe (hamstring) 2-3 weeks
Darcy MacPherson (leg fracture) 2-3 weeks
Nic Naitanui (knee - ACL) season
Ryan Nyhuis (suspension) 1 week
Jimmy Webster (groin) test
Harrison Wigg (ankle fracture) season
Charlie Cameron (foot - lisfranc) season
Brad Crouch (osteitis pubis/adductor tendon release) season
Joe Daniher (osteitis pubis) indefinite
Kyle Langford (whiplash) test
Shaun McKernan (hamstring tendon) season
Connor Menadue (hamstring) test
Paul Seedsman (hamstring) 3 weeks
Will Setterfield (knee - ACL) season
Tom Stewart (ankle) TBC
Cam Sutcliffe (hamstring) 3 weeks
The_Mad_Bomber vs. wimmera
Jayden Hunt (ankle) available
Jeremy Howe (concussion) test
Billy Longer (ankle surgery) season
Brody Mihocek (ankle) test
Tom Scully (fibula fracture) indefinite
Harry Taylor (foot) 1-3 weeks
Tom Doedee (concussion) test
Billy Hartung (hamstring) 1-2 weeks
Steven May (suspension) 1 week
Esava Ratugolea (leg fracture) indefinite
Sam Reid (achilles) 3 weeks
James Sicily (wrist fracture) 4 weeks
Fog has done as sensational job this year getting into the finals with his run of injuries and extremely close games, very solid effort.
Allblack and Stoops have done well in building overtime and putting together a solid team, definitely see them both putting up a fight.
Next tier would be WOB, who has had a recent struggle with injuries but was in the all in or go home mode with his team set up. If he can get Waite, Sanidlands, Mceigh, Griffen and Jack back he might be a small chance but wouldn’t fully rule him out as those guys are all 50/50.
The huge contenders would be Fudge, Wim and MB. All of the teams have done MASSIVE in rebuilding and putting together a team that will challenge for the flag. These guys didn’t spend too long dwelling on the bottom end of the ladder, then made some very smart trades and selected well in the draft (a handful of keepers each year, a few rolling spots, plus a few oldies for depth at each position). Very similar build.
Should be an exciting finals series, it’s pretty wide open.
I think wimmera will greatly enjoy your perspective on his 8 year absence from finals.
I expect his boys to come out breathing fire on the weekend.
It’s been a while.
I’m not sure how many years I finished bottom four, though.
Perhaps that’s what he was saying.
In Dunlop’s vein I’m doing a full season review.
- Riewoldt has been my best forward by a mile all year
- Menegola’s continued top form each week, even with Ablett/Danger
- I got Lochie O’Brien with a pick in the 40’s, he started his scoring slowly but is a certain keeper now
- Ceglar has made a late run for a keeper spot, having some impressive scores as sole ruck
- A few finds from free agency, Waterman is a longer term prospect, Long is a keeper, Battle is a keeper, Morgan could be if he wasn’t injured, and guys like Mihocek/Kolodasjni/Fox/Biggs/Dea gave me some useful backup options
- A good mid season trade period, we’ll have 10 picks inside the first 4 rounds, and 3 inside the first round
- Having pick 3 in a strong draft
- It’s never easy having to do a full rebuild, but with a lot of aging players over 30 I had to get value now whilst I could
- Liberatore starting the year by doing his knee 5 minutes in wasn’t the best start to my year
- Brad Hill played the first few games, and then his “soreness” lasted about 3 months on the sidelines, then Shuey missed 6 weeks mid year which killed off any chances I had
- Kruezer had another injury affected year ruined by injury
- Kennedy has missed at least 7 games through injury
- Franklin injury affected
- Birchall has missed the entire year, Broadbent kept hurting himself whenever he got close
- Most my St.Kilda boys went backwards with the club, Newnes/Dunstan inconsistent, Membrey’s first half of the year was poor although he recovered as the year wore on
- Backline was a disaster for most the year, although I managed to stablise later in the year
Pick 40 - Jack Riewoldt - Many questioned me with this pick but he’s already been a very strong forward scorer and at a good age still. Taking out the game where he got knocked out on 3 he’s still managed to have a career best year, currently averaging over 80 and being my most consistent forward. I’m marking this pick down as a success as he slots straight into a keeper spot next year. Tick.
Pick 45 - Lochie O’Brien - I reckon he slid due to a few not thinking he’d get early games. He came in early in the year and my gamble paid off for me. He was a slow burn with some low scores for the first half of the year, but as the season has wore on he’s building some 60/70 scores and his possession numbers have gone up slowly. He’s a definite keeper for me at this stage, he’s only trending upwards. Tick.
Pick 71 - Harry Taylor - He was picked up before the obvious rebuild, a ceiling average of 70 for a FB is a good cover, but unfortunately for me he was injured in the first quarter of the season and missed the next 3 months. If he was fit he’d have played every game for me. Not entirely a disaster, as I’ve managed to get return from him as I’ve traded for a Round 4 pick in this years draft, so essentially he was of some value in helping me to rebuild. Pass.
Pick 76 - Alex Sexton - Boy has some good talent as a HFF, and thought he was worth a shot here. Whilst he let me down early days, in fairness to him he’s a forward in a shoddy GC team who needs some better midfield supply. Has a weird habit of being strangely consistent with scores in the 50’s, I reckon he had about 10 of them during the year and he never dipped below 40 once and finished the year strongly. He’s a 50/50 prospect for my keepers as I reckon he has good upside. Tick.
Pick 81 - Mav Weller - Copped a little bit for drafting him but I reckon he gave me good return all things considered. He’s a good enough FF scorer but struggled for games early, but once he cracked the squad again he averaged around 70 for me which is a good result and backed his career average. With the rebuild I traded him for a Round 4 pick in this years draft, so I’ve upgraded his value essentially from a Round 5 to a Round 4 in this years draft, which is a decent return. Tick.
Pick 140 - Jarryn Geary - A massive success. I saw that he was captain therefore assured of games and with no Montagna there was going to be more loose ball coming his way. A late pick back giving an average of 73, and taking out his injury in a few games that’d be upwards of 80, which is more than I could have hoped for what people were calling him “depth at best”. Being over 30 I didn’t see him in my next premiership side, so he and Westhoff were apart of the trade that I got McGovern/picks1/2/3 for. Big Tick.
Pick 147 - Jesse Joyce - He was drafted as depth with the hope of having upside but unfortunatley he only remained a depth player. He’s still young but he just never found any loose ball or stuck mostly to shutdown jobs which he did well, but that didn’t help me. Was basically a fill in down back but I guess he did his job. Won’t be in my keepers but filled a spot all year. Pass.
Pick 149 - Micheal Johnson - Was OK for most the year, but he struggled to break into the side as the year wore on and now his career is over. Was hoping for reliable back cover and he failed in that respect for the most part. Fail.
Pick 162 - Micheal Rischitelli - A disaster, was playing back in the pre-season with OK numbers and got him thinking he’d be a nice HB’er and a strong body. He barely scored above 50 and was delisted a month later. Fail.
Pick 171 - Matthew Broadbent - Knew he was injured but also knew he’s a good scoring back when fit and still under 28. Was hoping for a mid season return but he got injured again, alas. He’s a sneaky chance for my keepers but for this year he was a fail.
The Future: My champion premiership list was aging, and it was at a point where even when I had everyone I still couldn’t win enough for top 4 anymore so I had to bite the bullet and rebuild. I didn’t want to sit in mid table mediocrity forever. I needed to trade my post 30 aged players out mid season and my strong draft position in return gives me a chance to do this whilst retaining some quality youth/experienced players which I think for the most part can turn it around. I currently have pick 3 with 15/17 (based on current ladder) so a good base to build from. I’m hoping Lobb and McGovern give me some good years next year and maybe sneak back into the 8 with a bit of luck.
I assume that it is too late to LTI Longer?
BBFFL Betting Ring
- Punters start with 100
- Max waged per round 50
- Max bet 20
- Bet on as many or few matchups as you please, except
- Finalists can not bet on their own matches
- Betting closes for this round Friday 7:30pm AEST
- Quote this post when laying bets
1.80 Awesome Scotty v Fudge 2.00
2.10 Mad Bomber v Wim 1.75
1.35 WOB v Stoops 3.80
2.00 Fog v Allblack 1.80
$20 on WOB
$20 on AB
Sorry wim, I posted the WOB v Stoops odds the wrong way around. All other odds correct and original post edited. Please submit your bet again.
Swap it to Stoops, then.
They’re juicy odds for either in a two horse race.
$20 on Stoops @ 3.80
$20 on AB @ 1.80
$20 on Neela.
$20 on MB
$10 on WOB
20 on Neela
20 on Fogdog
(I suck at betting).
Get I get in on the gamble?
$20 each on Fudge and MB
$10 on Stoops
Happy for you guys to be adding the weight of all that coin on MB.