Real nerdy stats

To keep myself a little busy during lockdown, I went through to work out who were the youngest-to-oldest teams and the games experience levels.

At the bottom of every game’s details, they list the 23 players in every game (regardless of whether the medi-sub is used) and the total games played-to-date)

Put them all together and you can work out the actual averages, rather than some mythical entire-list or best-30 averages people do. No point in counting someone who never gets a game, or is injured the whole season.

Essendon were 5th youngest and 3rd least experienced.

Unsurprising, Geelong were way out on top, often with 10 players over 30 and 8 or 9 over 200 games. For comparison, we have 2 players over 200 games, and 4 over 30 years old, none of whom are currently in the team.

Average Ages
Gold Coast 24.23
Adelaide 24.45
North Melbourne 24.67
Fremantle 24.79
Essendon 24.83
GWS 24.94
Melbourne 24.96
Sydney 25.00
St Kilda 25.23
Western Bulldogs 25.50
Port Adelaide 25.59
Carlton 25.60
Hawthorn 25.64
Brisbane 25.79
Collingwood 25.79
Richmond 26.36
West Coast 26.40
Geelong 27.62

Average Games
Gold Coast 69.01
Adelaide 72.05
Essendon 76.50
GWS 78.50
Fremantle 79.49
North Melbourne 83.53
St Kilda 84.22
Western Bulldogs 92.18
Melbourne 92.51
Sydney 96.16
Carlton 97.89
Collingwood 98.77
Port Adelaide 98.93
Hawthorn 99.11
Brisbane 104.79
Richmond 110.75
West Coast 116.45
Geelong 140.07

As an example, in Round 3, Archie would have his exact age at that time, and 1 game, and in Round 23, add 5 months to his age and 20 games.

So it’s as exact a calculation as possible. You could leave out unused medi-subs but that would be an incredibly tedious task.


This site could have saved you some time…AFL Club Lists for 2021 - Draftguru

1 Like

Wow. Is geelongs really under 30?

1 Like

Collingwood is in a world of pain.

I was going to say the exact same thing. Draft guru is a super site.

Well done on this. The draft guru website only has the average age of the playing list, not per game.

7 Clubs with oldest average age:

Carlton Didn’t get near the 8 for years
Hawthorn Dropped out of the 8
Collingwood Dropped out of the 8
Richmond Dropped out of the 8
West Coast Dropped out of the 8

Can you see a pattern in those age profiles?

Geelong get your zimmer frames ready last chance hotel
Brisbane: In the ward
Carlton, Port. Might have to go to hospital after 2022

Does it reflect on who actually gets a game?

Geelong have a heap of young guys in the magoos. We wouldn’t know most of them if they stood up in our porridge. They’ll get maybe a couple of games a season, like Constable, Krueger, De Koning. No point counting them.

It’s the overall list analysis. So you are not including players yet to play?

They’re irrelevant. They might never play seniors. If they’re injured, they’re irrelevant.

Actual data! Kudos for how you’ve collected it - far better than just doing an average like lazy journos do.

Average age is a horribly misused statistic. As an example, this is the average age of three playing lists for the past 11 years - if this metric had any value, it should be easy to see which clubs had success and which didn’t.

Year A B C
2010 23.9 22.8 22.8
2011 24.3 22.5 23.1
2012 23.9 22.8 23.6
2013 24.2 23.6 23.7
2014 23.7 24.3 23.9
2015 24.2 23.9 24.6
2016 24.2 23.8 25.0
2017 23.9 24.1 24.4
2018 24.4 23.8 24.1
2019 24.3 24.0 24.2
2020 24.7 24.1 24.0
2021 25.4 24.8 23.8

@Alan_Noonan_10 's analysis provides more value, even if it does require a lot of context to use it as a tool for predicting future success.

And calculating the averages of your “best 22” are so selective. People just add in players to improve their cherry-picking.

I remember my brother saying at a game in mid-1997 that we had our best 10 players (nominated at the season start) but what it did was give games to players who would become our stars, such as Lloyd, Lucas, Heffernan, Blumfield, Moorcroft, Caracella.

We may have finished 14th but towards the end of the season, we beat Geelong, Adelaide, Brisbane, some of whom were right there at the pointy end.

The most interesting one is Melbourne. Team is still relatively young and inexperienced yet they sit at the pointy end of the ladder… you’d think if they can hold it together they’ll be at the top for a number of years from here