McGrath Vs Marchbank Vs Sicily

Written by Schwarzwalder on February 12 2018

One of our Guest Writers, Brad, is back for more!  He’s taken a closer look at some of the mid-price DEFs on offer this year……….take it away,  Brad!

High-end mid-pricers usually mean that you’ll have them for most or all the season, so getting it right can make or break you. I’ve noticed a lot of SCT Coaches are tossing up a mid-price defender to enter a breakout year. While these are harder to pick than a Bernard Tomic tantrum, the most popular candidates look to be Andrew McGrath, Caleb Marchbank and James Sicily.

Here’s a quick look at some numbers to see just how good your intuition is shaping:

Andrew McGrath (Ess), Ave 70.7, $388k

The Rising Star winner had a great first season and was a standout all year. He was priced high as the #1 draft pick from 2016 and didn’t disappoint giving plenty of value. All pre-season we’ve heard that he’s going to spend more time in the middle (which Bombers aren’t?) which should give him plenty of opportunity to increase his average. However he does enter the dreaded second year and hopefully won’t suffer the R&B.

2017 Games: 20

Ave disposals: 19.8

Scores Above 90: 3

Scores Under 65: 10

Pre-bye Ave: 73.7

Post-bye Ave: 66.6

While looking at the stats, I noticed that McGrath had 4 games (out of 13) where he gathered over 20 possessions but still scored below 70. This suggests that he is a bit wasteful, but hopefully there should be some natural improvement.

Definitely one to watch.



Caleb Marchbank (Carl), Ave 69.4, $381k

The former Giant slipped into the Blues backline nicely last year and helped many coaches by scoring early, making him a nice fattened cow by the byes. But is it worth dropping him into the team again? He certainly has the potential and with a season-ending injury to The Doc and Gibbs leaving for the Crows, there could be quite a lot of opportunity for Marchbank.

2017 Games: 16

Ave disposals: 15.5

Scores Above 90: 3

Scores Under 65: 8

Pre-bye Ave: 75.6

Post-bye Ave: 59.0

It’s clear after a long season, Marchbank slowed towards the end, missing Rounds 16-18 and 21-23. He may be better with another pre-season under his wings.

He’s certainly worth watching in the JLT series, but I’m doubtful of a 20 point increase.



James Sicily (Haw), Ave 73.3 $402k

The angry man in brown and yellow will likely push the boundaries on the field and test Coaches’ patience if you’re game enough to watch him play. He gave away an amazing 7 free kicks against Carlton back in Round 22 which left him with a score of 25! Having dual position status with the forward line will help swing him around, but we SuperCoaches need  him to play defence on the ground.

2017 Games: 19

Ave disposals: 18.5

Scores Above 90: 7

Scores Under 65: 9

Pre-bye Ave: 53.1

Post-bye Ave: 91.4

A huge difference between pre and post byes, where Sizzle went much better set in defence post-bye. Before the bye, his highest score was 77 in Round 4, otherwise all below 65.

If you were to take out the Blues free-kick episode, his average jumps to 98.7. Now that sounds rather appealing, but perhaps we haven’t seen the last of these cray-cray times with Sizzle.

Thanks Brad, always appreciated!  If you’re interested in being a Guest Writer for SCT, then click on the link and get in touch – Schwarzwalder


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15 thoughts on “McGrath Vs Marchbank Vs Sicily”

  1. Sicily’s got the talent, no doubt. But if I put my “Opposition Coach” hat on, I’m looking for the most annoying small forward in my team, and telling him to go as hard as possible at Hawk number 6. I’m sure I’m not the only one thinking this way.

    He may well have a bumper year, but I don’t think I’ll regret picking someone else.


  2. Good Stuff Brad!

    It was a positive sign that Sicily played down back in the Hawks Intra Club hit out and taking 5 to 6 intercept marks from what i read in the Match report.

    I had Sicily at F3 , but he is now slotted in at D4 with Keffe in the Fwds as a possible swingman.


    1. I should’ve added a poll (face palm)…….I’ll set one up with all mid-price DEFs over the next couple days……


  3. Fantastic job. McGrath is a gun. In a couple years time we will all be saying ‘should we start with McGrath at $749k?’


    1. Haha, Wouldn’t that be nice??

      Bit early to be calling him in like that. Can I do one?

      In a few years we will all be saying ‘should we start with Tippet at $848k?’


  4. I don’t believe any of the three would make top 10, so most coaches would be thinking of trading them out rather than keeping them all year, or even most of the year.

    Looking at draws and history, of the three – I think Marchbank is probably best bet to trade for a player that is showing best signs of top 10 (or even 6), by a usable round (byes). Sicily could be worth more towards the end of the season though – he could even be worth more by their bye (and there lies the rub).

    I think you best stated the deciding point against McGrath – where will he play, what role will he have, what other Bombers might compete with him.

    If I take one, it might be Marchbank – and he might be a handy POD.



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