Coach – Ross Lyon
Points For – 16th
Points Against – 14th
Top 5 Best and Fairest
- Lachie Neale
- Stephen Hill
- MIchael Walters
- Matthew Pavlich
- Lee Spurr
2016 Rising Star Noms
Rnd 11 - Connor Blakely
Rnd 12 - Lachlan Weller
Ins – Shane Kersten, Cam McCarthy, Brad Hill, Joel Hamling, Griffin Logue, Sean Darcy, Brennan Cox, Luke Ryan, Tailin Duman, Luke Strnadica
Outs – Matthew Pavlich, Michael Barlow, Sean Hurley, Tanner Smith, Anthony Morabito, Tendai Mzungu, Matt de Boer, Clancee Pearce, Jack Hannath, Alex Silvani, Chris Mayne
At the end of the trade period I was incredibly bullish about Freo being able to move back up the ladder pretty quickly. They found some talls and some experience on top of the young players they developed during the year. There are two things that make me think it could be another hard year for them. The players they lost are important to them and what the hell is happening down there with discipline. That being said, poor off field discipline doesnt exactly have a direct correlation with on field performance. Right Hawthorn… wink wink.
There is potential in their forward line and this is probably as good as it has looked potentially in a while. McCarthy joins an improved Taberner with Kersten coming from Geelong as well. They have genuine marking targets which is something Fremantle supporters havent seen for a while. They have quality smalls as well with Walters, Ballantyne and Langdon. Throw in Fyfe spending time down there as well as Bennell if he is ever fit and you have a decent set up.
The midfield looks solid as well. Neale is close to the best ball winner in the league, they wont lack outside run with the Hill boys taking a wing each and Fyfe (when fit) is as good a game breaker as we have seen since Hird graced the field. Mundy looks to have lost a yard and not sure he carried the captaincy well last year. Weller looked like a player in bursts last year and suspect this will be the year he really establishes himself. Still missing real support in the heat but will break even more often than not.
No team cares more about the health of their rucks than Fremantle. Sandilands is old, he is also the player most important in deciding how many games the Dockers will win next year. They need him on the field. They have back up in Clarke and Griffin but so far they havent really shown as much as Freo would have hoped.
The backline is a very much a work in progress. They have some young KP players with Hamling joining them as well as Collins and Pearce developing nicely. They also still have Zac Dawson on their list along with Michael Johnson who I am sure was on their list when they first came into the competition. They are clearly in a transition period back there and hopefully for their long term progression we see more of the younger players this year.
We know the coach, we know him and his game style well. I suspect last years poor result was a case of Lyon managing outcomes (not tanking) and ensuring he started the development of his list once it became apparent that things were going his way. They arent a 4 win team, they are better than that especially with the home ground advantage. I dont think they are a top eight team but they will challenge at times during the year. Will eventually finish somewhere between 10th and 12th