The +10 Club #9

Written by Thommo on March 13 2019

For some players, footy is a simple game: See ball, win ball, handpass ball.

And repeat.

And repeat.

And repeat…

With Tom Mitchell out for the season, this addition to The +10 Club will be the biggest ball winner in the league in 2019.

How good would it be to see the Crouch brothers back in action?

Name: Matt Crouch

Team: Adelaide

Position: MID

Price: $551,30

Bye round: 14

2018 average: 101.6ppg

2018 games played: 18

Why will Crouch improve by 10 points?

Any coaches who are selecting Matt Crouch are doing so because of his ball magnetism and his late 2017 form. After a slow start to 2017, Crouch went ballistic from Round 10, pumping out 15 tonnes from 16 matches which culminated in an average of 125ppg after his bye. His single score below 100 points was 91 points from 34 possessions against the Swans in Round 22. Across the entirety of 2017 Crouch averaged a massive 33 disposals and 5 tackles per match.

Unfortunately an early hamstring injury in 2018 prevented Crouch from returning to the 111 point average he achieved in 2018. He was still consistent, with only the two scores below 80 points for the season, but he just couldn’t achieve the high scores of 2018. Statistically his year wasn’t that different to 2017 with 32 disposals, 4 marks and 4 tackles per match and an almost identical retention rate so it’s hard to see exactly why his average was so much lower, but it’s likely he suffered from the absence of Sloane and Brad Crouch along with the Crows’ poor form. Despite the drop-off in form, Crouch still averaged 110ppg after the bye in 2018 showing he enjoys the second half of the season after averaging 125ppg in the latter half of  2017.

Along with his brother, Brad, Matt Crouch appears to be fully fit in 2019 and ready to return to those heights of 2017. With Rory Sloane also tracking well this preseason, expect the Crows to force their way back into the top 8 once more.

Why won’t he improve?

I think we can all agree that Crouch is almost guaranteed to improve, so my argument is not that he won’t improve but rather that you don’t have to start with him. I know that sounds counterintuitive: If he’s going to improve, why wouldn’t we start with him?

I have two issues with Crouch: One, that he is a slow starter, the second that he has a low ceiling. If you look back over his five season career, he has never scored overly well in the first half of a season. Even in his best season of 2017 he averaged only 98.25ppg to the bye. To be fair he showed signs of halting this trend in 2018 with 105 points in Round 1, but the Round 2 injury dragged down his average to only 93ppg before the bye. The fact is, in 5 seasons Crouch has never averaged over 100ppg pre-bye.

And while Matt Crouch can certainly rack up the possessions his tendency to handpass and inability to kick goals prevents him from pumping out monster scores. Even when he averaged 125ppg between Round 10, 2017 and the 2017 Grand Final, Crouch only scored over 140 one single time.

Not that consistent scoring is a bad thing but it just means that his score is unlikely to spike to unattainable levels should you wish to pick him up later in the season.



Unless he injures himself again, Matt Crouch is guaranteed to score you a SC tonne every week. He won’t reward you with many sexy 150+ point efforts, but at least you know he won’t drop a stinky 70 points either.

Lock him in with confidence if you like consistent points.

Are you starting Matt Crouch?

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11 thoughts on “The +10 Club #9”

  1. Great write up Thommo, If Kelly’s not selected round 1 then I’ll be selecting ‘a’ Crouch brother to free up some cash and possibly turn Collins into Ridley.


  2. At $55k he’s a steal! 😉

    Wasn’t my first premo picked, but he wasn’t my last either! Was in my initial top5 MIDs list for 2019 back in October last year and he hasn’t moved since. Seems to go better when his brother’s on the park too!


  3. Along with Cripps, was my first picked mid this year. I firmly believe he’ll be top 3 Mid only player this year. Kinda disappointed he killed it in the last JLT which made his ownership jump ha ha ha


  4. Kind of torn whether I’ve enjoyed his pre-season form or if it has annoyed me.

    Had him locked since day one and was good to see him play that way to back up my opinion but then it has meant that everyone else is jumping on him!


  5. This is probably an unpopular view but I don’t believe in the notion of some players being slow/fast starters. I think there are always other reasons that lead to these trends and by pure chance it happens to some players a few years in a row. But this doesn’t make it any more or less likely to occur again. In the case of M Crouch I think you described these reasons very well Thommo. In the first half of 2018 he was hampered by injuries, reducing his scores and in 2017 he just broke out to pure premium in the 2nd half of the season, same as many others have done before e.g. Macrae. Injuries aside, I don’t see any reason why he would have a slow start to the season again.

    Great point about his ceiling, he certainly wont be the type to really hurt those who don’t start him and should never get to far out of upgrade reach.


    1. Yeah agree – Crouch’s “slow start” amounted to three tons in his first four games, interrupted by doing his hamstring in a game where he was up to 51 at quarter time.

      The reality is that in his last 34 games he has only failed to ton 6 times, 3 of those above 90 and another being the aforementioned string game in which he was looking at 150+.

      He’s locked in.


  6. I’ll be starting Zerrett over Crouch at M4. Crouch will definitely be an upgrade target around the byes (possibly earlier, depending on his price). Zerrett is pretty much guaranteed 22 games, whereas Crouch has some injury concerns.
    However, with Sloane back in the side to take the tag, Crouch could go nuts this year… Hmm…


    1. Just put them at m4 and m5. Better than any d-2,f-2 selections. Hmm I can downgrade either crouch or Merritt to a mid pricer and upgrade to a fwd or def premium to average maby 100. Or I can downgrade a fwd or def premium to someone who probably averages around 90 and run Merritt and crouch. Not even worth considering for me on that principle.


  7. Slow starter and has a much better schedule on an average-vs-opponent basis in the back half of the season, so an upgrade target for me. But I can see why others might want to lock him away early.


  8. I think his game limits his ceiling compared to the Dangers, Cripps, Fyfes, so its no for me. sure he gets his 30-40 possessions, but they seem to only result in 110-120pts



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