The Forest from the Trees: A post for the stats nerds


In terms of games Hawthorn are the most experienced with an average of 80.53 games. We only have an average of 55.38 and Gold Coast is 50.15. St Kilda, Fark Carlton and Brisbane all have 56.

Age the spread is from Hawthorn 24.86 to Gold Coast 23.24. We are 5th with an average age of 24.11.


Cool thanks.


So the age stat is absolute garbage, and the experience difference is .7 or so less than the mid group of teams.
Another quality input from our friends at CD.


No numbers to back it up, but I feel like we have a weird number of older, but inexperienced, backup players (Harts, brown, smack et Al). The Saga has put us in an unusual spot list wise.

That said, our best 22 feels very youthful.


The long and short of it: How the Bombers measure up in 2019

Nick Bowen

Can the Bombers break their 14-year finals drought next season?

AT ESSENDON, it will be a case of the long and the short of it in 2019.

When the Bombers claim former Fremantle ruckman Zac Clarke in the pre-season supplemental selection period (SSP), which opens on Saturday, they will enter next season with 22 players 190cm or taller on their list, the equal-highest tally in the competition alongside Collingwood.

The addition of Clarke, 203cm, will also give them five players 200cm or taller, just one short of the League high of six held jointly by the Blues, Brisbane, Port Adelaide and St Kilda.

CLUB LISTS COMPARED Oldest? Youngest? Most experienced?

But if Essendon is well-placed to rule the air next season, it also has an arsenal of smalls itching to prey on any crumbs left by its giants.

The Bombers boast eight players who stand 179cm or shorter, equal first in the AFL alongside Fremantle. By comparison, reigning premier West Coast, Sydney and North Melbourne will each enter next season with just two players shorter than 180cm on their lists.

The newest member of the Bombers’ small fleet is the aptly named Irving Mosquito, the 176cm goalsneak who was part of Hawthorn’s Next Generation Academy but landed at Tullamarine after the Hawks declined to match the Bombers’ bid of pick No.38 in the NAB AFL Draft.

The Dons’ magic bag of small forwards was already well stocked with Orazio Fantasia (177cm) and Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti (171cm) but it’s overflowing now that Mosquito is wearing the red and black.

The looming acquisition of Clarke will also give Essendon a back-up ruck option for Tom Bellchambers in the wake of Matthew Leuenberger’s unexpected retirement.

But where the Bombers’ big-man stocks are concerned it’s the virtual acquisition of Joe Daniher that has some pundits bullish about their top-four chances in 2019.

Daniher was sidelined after round seven last year with osteitis pubis and is not expected to resume full training until after Christmas.

But if the Bombers can get the 2017 All Australian fit and firing their attack will have the focal point it lacked for most of 2018 – Mitch Brown was the leading goalscorer among the Bombers’ key forwards last year with 18, way down on the career-high 65 Daniher kicked in 2017.

However, the biggest question mark hovering over Essendon’s legitimacy as a contender remains its midfield.

PROS AND CONS Our verdict on your club’s fixture

Winning the four-club race for Dylan Shiel during the NAB Trade Period will make a big difference.

But at 182cm, the former GWS star is not the inside beast – think Patrick Cripps, Nat Fyfe or Dustin Martin – the Dons have been crying out for.

After skipper Dyson Heppell (189cm), the members of Essendon’s midfield core are all 180cm or shorter – Zach Merrett, Darcy Parish, David Zaharakis and Devon Smith (176cm).

Parting with Brendon Goddard (193cm) won’t help either even if the veteran had been a less frequent centre-bounce attendee in recent seasons.

WHO MAKES FINALS? Do the 2019 Ladder Predictor

Jake Stringer’s first season at Tullamarine suggests the 192cm former Bulldog is a forward who can occasionally pinch-hit in the midfield and no more.

And Andrew McGrath is a class act destined to eventually play on the ball, but at 178cm will only add to the Dons’ undersized group.

Which makes David Myers and Kyle Langford, both 191cm, potentially important players for Essendon in 2019.

Myers was ranked joint first at the Bombers in 2018 for average clearances (4.9 a game, equal with Heppell) but injury troubles have meant he has played 20 games in a season just once in his career, in 2013.

MUST-WATCH GAMES The 22 you won’t want to miss

Langford also took some significant strides this year, playing 16 games, including the last 14 straight.

If the former No.17 draft pick continues his development in 2019 and Myers stays fit, the Bombers might finally have assembled the midfield that can carry them to their first finals win since 2004.

How teams stack up in 2019

Players 179cm or shorter
8 – Essendon, Fremantle
7 – Richmond
5 – Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Collingwood
4 – Carlton, Port Adelaide, St Kilda
3 – Geelong, Gold Coast, GWS, Hawthorn, Western Bulldogs
2 – Sydney, West Coast, North Melbourne

28 - North Melbourne
26 – Western Bulldogs
25 – Sydney, Hawthorn, Gold Coast
24 – Geelong, Melbourne, Port Adelaide, West Coast
23 – GWS, St Kilda
22 – Adelaide
20 – Brisbane
19 – Carlton, Collingwood, Richmond
18 – Fremantle
16 – Essendon

17 – Collingwood, Essendon
16 – West Coast
15 – Carlton, GWS, Richmond, Sydney
14 – Brisbane, Geelong, Hawthorn
13 – Fremantle
12 – Adelaide, Gold Coast, Western Bulldogs, Port Adelaide, St Kilda
11 – Melbourne
9 – North Melbourne

6 – Brisbane, Carlton, Port Adelaide, St Kilda
5 – Adelaide, Collingwood, Fremantle, Gold Coast, North Melbourne*, Essendon*
4 – Geelong, Sydney
3 – GWS, Hawthorn, West Coast, Western Bulldogs
2 – Melbourne, Richmond

*Essendon and North are set to add Zac Clarke and Tom Campbell respectively during the SSP. Both players have been included in these figures


Are they REALLY our players heights… or it the just grass/camera angle?


Also that linked article on age. 6th oldest list, less games played than everyone but gold coast.

In summary, Essendon is a team of contrasts.


We will be breaking Champion Data’s model even more when we win the flag. Their model already has some serious issues given it has Majak Daw rated as elite yet neither Patrick Cripps or Tom Mitchell are elite.


Chris _64 rates the Champion Data stats collectors as Elite and the Ghampion Data algoritm analysts as complete shate.


l also question the accuracy of some of their figures. At the family day/intra club match this tis year, l met Tippa. l am just on 167 cm and Tippa is way more than 4 cm taller than l am.


It’s the hair :wink:


Lets hold these stats gurus accountable. This is what squiggle predict for 2019 at the end of round 23:

Note that 1-10 are separated by just 2 games and percentage. If true, the season will be a cliffhanger.


I would be shocked if GWS is that high.

They have talent still but every time they lose players they have to restructure.

Bottom of 8 for mine.


What you are making note of is the Dylan Shiel factor.

As Chris indicates, that was done directly after the season finished.

Clearly if done now, GWS and us would swap spots.

Lid off.


That ladder looks flawed. Where do they expect Gold Coast’s 4 wins to come from. Also Fark Carlton with 6 wins seems overs. Think the Swans will find a way to win more than 9 matches.


In 2018 GCS beat Sydney… need I say more ?
They also beat North, Carlton and the Bris Lions.

Mind you I would not be surprised if they failed to win a game in 2019.


He’s quality so i am expecting him to make a difference to both sides for different reasons.

I think he will go to another level with us as well so get on him for the brownlow before the odds become to short.


When you don’t win any finals for 100 years and lose five players for a year you don’t tend to make the most experienced list :smiley:


Agree. It’s the most useless stat around.
BJ being replaced by a draftee drops our average by 0.35. So what?

Likewise, with BJ on the list, for the games played, we go from 17th to 10th. Meaning what?

The age of high performing players is a more useful metric from a list management point of view.

And reporting it to 2 decimal places… FFS.


Yes. Statistical accuracy demands at least 3 decimal places.
Typical slipshod journalism.