Coach – Simon Goodwin
Points For – 10th
Points Against – 10th
Top 5 Best and Fairest
- Jack Viney
- Nathan Jones
- Max Gawn
- Dom Tyson
- Jack Watts
2016 Rising Star Noms
Clayton Oliver (Round 1)
James Harmes (Round 7)
Christian Petracca (Round 9)
Oscar McDonald (Round 21)
Ins – Michael Hibberd, Pat McKenna, Jordan Lewis, Mitch Hannan, Dion Johnstone, Lachlan Filipovic, Tim Smith, Declan Keilty
Outs – Jack Grimes, Matt Jones, Lynden Dunn, Chris Dawes, Ben Newton, Viv Michie, Max King, Hertier Lumumba
They have been building towards finals for a long time. Every year they are picked to be the big improver and the last few they have shown glimpses, they have improved but just not enough. They feel a little to me like a team that does a lot of things well but none of them brilliantly.
I don't rate their backline parrticularly highly. Feels too short and too reliant at the KP level on too few. Tom McDonald looked the goods two years ago but his development slowed last year. Oscar looked the goods in patches last year. They need the McDonald boys to stand up in a big way this year. They have added Hibberd for run. I have concerns with Hibberd, it looked to me in his last season of footy that he had been found out, he is one sided and teams played him very well. I am also not sure they needed Hibberd, to me it looked like they were ok for HB Flankers.
The midfield has a reasonable level of talent. Viney is a gun, Jones is valuable and I think they have a few young players like Brayshaw and Oliver who will be more productive this year. You look at Vince and Vandenberg who has been very good, then throw Jordan Lewis in the mix and you have a sturdy midfield. Petracca will give them more minutes in the middle this year as well and provides a little more excitement. You could argue it is a blue collar midfield that needs more run but I think they will go pretty well.
Max Gawn became a very good ruck last year. It was an area they looked to be struggling but he found his natural game and was very damaging. They have Spencer as depth but will be hoping Gawn stays on the field.
The forward line is full of potential. Hogan was another player who didnt develop they way they would have liked last year. I think the contract stuff got in his head and he looked to get ahead of himself. He is still going to be a gun. Jack Watts became a valuable footballer last year and seems to finally be showing his potential. Garlett is a quality small and with minutes from Brayshaw and Petracca they should be ok next year. Much like the backline though, it just feel like they lack depth.
Everything still smells like Roos, will be interesting to see what Goodwin changes up. Melbourne tends to suck me in a little when I see some of the young talent they have. There is still some holes in their playing list, especially in the KP ranks. I dont think they are good enough to play finals yet. They will challenge for the lower section of the eight but somewhere around 9-11 should be about their mark