Under The Radar

Written by Schwarzwalder on February 8 2019

(Written & Created By Ben)

 

Looking through the Rate My Team threads during the last month or so, there are lots of incredible teams being drawn up and drafted by all of the wonderful Coaches on this site. However, quite a lot of them are starting to look eerily similar, with the likes of Cripps, Whitfield, Dangerfield, Heeney etc. popping up quite frequently (although I am also guilty of this!).

So I thought I’d bring attention to some POD premos that you should consider as an alternative to some of the more popular picks to get an edge on the competition early. I’ve decided to classify a POD as anyone under 5% ownership rate (according to Supercoach Stats, and as of 4/2/19). Without further ado, let’s get into it……….

 

DEFENDERS

 

Shannon Hurn($523,400), 2018 avg 96, 4% ownership

The ever-classy Hurn was instrumental to West Coast’s premiership run last year, playing a pivotal distribution role out of the backline, and was rewarded with a career best average in the process. Hurn showed his big ceiling last season with 7 scores of 110+, as well as his inconsistency, with 7 scores below 80.

From what I can tell, these lower scores were due to a lower possession count, which hopefully should be less of an issue with the new kick-in rules, as Hurn took a whopping 61.7% of West Coasts’ kick-ins last year. Watch his scoring in JLT………

 

Jack Crisp ($519,900),2018 avg 95.8, 3% ownership

Jack Crisp finally broke into the Top 6 DEFs last season after teasing us for so long, boosting his average up by nearly 6ppg higher than his previous best. This can mainly be attributed to the 10 tons he scored throughout the season.

At only 25 years old, Crisp should be entering his prime on a strong team that generally scores very well in Supercoach, therefore he could increase his average further this year. Another one to watch………

 

Luke Ryan ($489,900),2018 avg. 90.3, 3% ownership

A player who has been in and out of my team despite burning me so bad last year, Ryan looks set to be one of the main beneficiaries of the new kick-in rules. This is because despite taking 40% of Freo’s kick-ins last season, he barely ever played on.

Considering how disposal-reliant his scores are (every ton scored last year he had 20+ disposals, only one 20+ disposal game where he didn’t score a ton), most of his kick-ins should turn into disposals, which should then turn into tons. Another one to watch closely……..

 

MIDFIELDERS

Stephen Coniglio($588,600), 2018 avg 108.4, 4% ownership

A mid-price gun last season that had many Coaches kicking themselves for not starting (me included – whoops!), Cogs had a career best year both in the regular game and in Supercoach. He showed his incredible ceiling, scoring 13 tons last year, including 4 scores of 130+ (and two of those were 150+!).

However, now he is premium priced, everyone seems hesitant to select him. Will the departure of Shiel mean his average increases or decreases? I can’t say for sure. Another one to keep an eye on.

 

Adam Treloar ($594,200), 2018 avg 109.5, 3% ownership

One of the premier young midfielders in the comp, Treloar has been incredible for the Pies since coming over from GWS, averaging an impressive 107.4 in the 3 years he’s been there. Last year he was impressive in particular, amassing 10 tons from 13 games before going down with injury, including three scores of 120+.

Entering what should be his prime, and again playing for a good ‘Supercoach-scoring’ side, Treloar should be one to watch in the JLT series. Will be interesting to see how the 6x6x6 format, as well as the addition of Beams affects his scoring.

 

Marcus Bontempelli ($564,600), 2018 avg 104, 4% ownership

The player that I love to hate (Supercoach-wise anyway), Champion Data’s darling Bontempelli had a somewhat disappointing 2018, which can mainly be chalked up to Mr. Magnets giving him extended periods up forward. This may cause some people to write him off, however you have to remember that he’s only 23 and not even in his “prime” yet, so it wouldn’t be surprising for him to have a big jump in scoring some time in the future.

 

FORWARDS

Sam Menegola ($543,100),2018 avg 100, 3% ownership

A player that I personally overlooked in my Geelong preview, Menegola has now averaged 100 in the last 2 seasons, despite the number of high-scorers in Geelong’s midfield. He was a bit of a rollercoaster last season, scoring 13 tons (including 6 of 120+), while also chucking up 5 stinkers of 70 or less.

However, once you jumped on the Meneroller-coaster, it certainly had more ups than downs, so he’s definitely one to consider if you’re looking for a POD alternative to someone like Heeney or Smith.

 

David Mundy ($520,900), 2018 avg 96, 1% ownership

A battler through and through, Mundy will be turning 34 this year, which is mostly the reason only 1% of coaches have picked him till now. However, last season he was 5th in total points for forwards, which is incredible for someone his age. He was ranked that high off the back of 11 tons, and scoring only 5 games below 80. The main reason he had a few mediocre scores is because he played primarily forward for a few games.

I believe this won’t be an issue this season though, as with Neale gone, Blakely out for most of the season, and Fyfe missing his obligatory 10 games for the year, Mundy’s experience will be relied upon in Freo’s young midfield. I was almost tempted to not include him in this write-up, as he’s my team’s super POD at the moment, but alas, I put the good of the SuperCoachTalk community before my own Supercoach success 😉

 

Lance Franklin ($543,500), 2018 avg 100.1, 4% ownership

It’s weird to be thinking of Buddy as a POD, yet here we are. Despite struggling with injury all year, Buddy actually had his best average since 2012, where he averaged 115.5.  Buddy reached this average by going absolutely huge throughout the year, smashing out scores of 175, 178 and 161 during the season.

However, in typical Buddy fashion, he also had 6 scores under 60, so he is truly the biggest risk vs. reward player in the game. There are some Rounds where he’ll cost you a league win, other Rounds he’ll win you one, he can be both incredibly frustrating and incredibly satisfying to have on your team. However, if he enters the season with a clean bill of health, expect him to throw up less stinkers and hopefully have a more consistent year (while still pumping out monster scores.

 

So there we go, some PODs for your consideration! Side-note, I deliberately didn’t list any rucks, as I felt there are no PODs that arereally worth looking at, as all of the viable choices have more than 5% ownership at this stage (even Stef clears the mark by a large amount at 9%).  Aside from that, is there anyone I missed? Is there someone in this list I’m overrating?  Make sure to let me know!

 

** Nice work, young fella! – Schwarzwalder**

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23 thoughts on “Under The Radar”

  1. Hurn was my last upgrade in defence last season and he delivered for me. 523k is a fair bit of coin considering the cookie cutter picks around his price. But he will absolutely play on from kick ins, and kick long to those big WCE targets they have.
    This guys kick is like a cannon, and accurate – do we just pick the main kick in players this year? Hurn, witherden, ryan, sicily? Especially if they are an intercept type of player/role.
    Good write up for this time of year thanks mate

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  2. Thanks again to Schwarz for publishing one of my write-ups again, and for all the support he’s given my brand spanking new Twitter account. If you want to give that a follow to hear all of my spicy takes on Supercoach, just click my name and it’ll take you there.

    Also, if there’s enough interest, I can absolutely do a part two of this series. I mainly focused on overlooked premos, but I could absolutely look at some breakout candidates that might be overlooked too. OR, I could even do the opposite of this write-up and have a look at some of the popular players I think you should avoid. I dunno, you guys let me know what you want to see!

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  3. Brilliant stuff Ben. I have had ALL of them in my team at some point … apart from Buddy. I will be starting Mundy. I particularly like Coniglio. If I had cajones he’d be in my starting line up too. Is it ok to have him AND Taranto (and Kelly) at season’s start?

    Now, close your eyes and cast yourself forward to September 2019.
    Someone whispers in your ear that Cogs had the highest average of all in SuperCoach land.
    Open your eyes! Surprised?? No, not really! Me neither.

    Great stuff Ben and I for one would love to read more of your thoughts. If I had to choose, I’d go for one on those to avoid, but if you have the time, write them all! We’ll all be better for it.

    I for one would be happy to read 10+ articles per day from people I respect here on SCT, rather than the (unedited) drivel that appears in the Herald Sun each day!

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  4. Personally i think picking defensive PODS this year is a massive risk because i see 5 clear cut premos that will more than likely be top 6 (Lloyd, Laird, Sicily, Whitfield, Simpson) leaving only 1 spot which you could put a blanket over many players fighting for.

    Love Cogs, Menegola and Mundy picks although i have none of the three at the moment. Can’t fit Cogs in preferring Merret, Martin and Yeo at the moment. Would love to fit either Mena or Mundy in at F3 over wingard however don’t currently have the funds to do so unfortunately (only way i see myself being able to do it is by downgrading Fyfe to Neale which would allow Wingard to Mundy).

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    1. Really good point about down back. I see it slightly differently with laird lloyd and whitfield ahead, then sicily Williams and simpson a step down, then a big drop. In saying that, there will be a breakout player jump into that second teir

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  5. Heavily disagree Zac, with regard to defensive players. With big changes to the rules down back, there’s a strong chance we see the game styles change – and not just kick ins. This will no doubt open up some players to score more favourably than would otherwise be expected.

    Way too much uncertainty in defence.

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    1. Very interesting year all over the ground. Jlt is so important. Can see potentially every player in every team changing based on the new rules effect(danger the only certainty, just dominates anywhere). But are contested beasts going to be on the wane, will wingers rise, will key position forwards develop more stable scoring outputs, of course all the defense questions.
      It would be funny to see almost all coaches back the wrong horse due to rule changes, and just go, well almost no one had these guys either so whatever.
      This is going to be a great season.

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    2. Not quite sure what other rules would majorly change things in defense other than kick ins and the starting structure (6-6-6). One thing i can think of is that with the starting 6-6-6 it makes it harder for teams to get a spare man in defense. This if anything will reduce the amount of intercept marks taken therefor negatively effecting some intercept players who may now have to be more concerned on manning up defensively.

      One point that may support your theory is that teams maybe less inclined to chip around the backline and look to drive the ball longer with more amount of space on offer in defense with the kick out changes and marks within 9m of goal. This is the only potential downside i can see to the likes of Laird, Lloyd and Simpson but wouldn’t the clubs want these players to be the ones driving the ball out of defense either way?

      No doubt we are all just guessing at this stage though and JLT will be important to look at as TOF has stated.

      Even with potential changes i still can’t see many defenders challenging Laird, Lloyd and Whitfield specifically for the top defensive spots.

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      1. The big ones as you say are the changes to kick-ins, the associated moving back of the man on the mark for any free kicks close to goal and 6/6/6. It’s more that I expect we see a change in structure from teams (e.g. less forward press – more transition footy) that will change who scores what points.

        If we do see less forward press and cleaner transition into the forward half we could actually see defenders get less of the ball as the ball will spend less time in dispute at the ends of the ground. It’s possible that we see all defenders have lower scoring! I would still expect the likes of Lloyd to still score well, but there may not be the value expected. It’s very hard to know at this stage.

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        1. If these changes really do fundamentally undermine the forward press (and, as I’ve written before on the matter, I’m rather sceptical about that), I suspect we’ll see it metamorphose into a midfield press. Now that coaches have discovered the awesome power of forward pressure, they’re not going to give it up that easily.

          Which brings me back to a point I’ve made numerous times before: although rule changes might have some effect at the margins, ultimately the style in which the game is played will always be driven by the coaches, not the Laws of the Game Committee. And until one of them figures out how to beat the press completely, it will be here to stay.

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  6. Another great article. I was fortunate enough to start both hurn and cogs last year which went a long way to leaving me with trades for gf week. Hurn will start but cant find a spot for cogs.
    Jlt will be so important this year with the devils number coming into play. Im betting massive changes to sc teams before round 1 as a result.

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  7. Ok left field here, 6/ 6 /6 only happens at centre bounces , instead of them lining up on the centre square they’ll be in the 50m arc. Precious seconds for the standout rucks (GG) to get it to their dominant midfield that then release it long to a guy that’s 7’1″. Mason Cox anyone? If they double team him that leaves a player spare in the forward line. Wonder if we’ll see a return of the centurion forwards?

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  8. Read somewhere.today that Crisp isn’t back into proper training yet as he’s had back and hip issues I think it was. Just fyi

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    1. Yep. Will be a post-bye upgrade target at best for me. While likely to be up for Rd1, he was a watch only anyway. Not sure he’ll get the minutes he had through the middle last year with Beams on board now. Great player but unlikely to be a top6 DEF in SC this year for mine.

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    2. Will be making his way into my side somewhere from round 7 to 9 (which is when his scoring tends to explode every year).

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  9. Great article. I think the problem with their low ownership is due to there being enough doubt about each.

    – Hurn is priced pretty highly and considering he will drop a few sub games, can be gotten for cheaper at a later date.
    – I’m seeing Collingwood slide from the 8 this year, so steering clear of most of them.
    – Ryan is currently in my team and is almost a lock, but still needs to increase his output from last year.

    Hard to argue with the mids of Cogs, Bont and Treloar. They’re all likely to average over 100 and anyone of them could jump to average 115+ and there wouldn’t be any surprises. But, again, there’s probably just enough doubt on each. Can COgs do better again this year, or was that his peak? Where will Bont play? Will it be crazy good Treloar or just good Treloar.

    The forwards are just tricky anyway. Most coaches go with mids that happen to have a forward allocation as well. Lets face it, it’s pretty safe that way.
    – Menegola might be getting squeezed out due to bye rounds or coaches are still not sure whether he’s got the standard. His bad can be pretty bad sometimes.
    – Key Position Forwards like Buddy are usually avoided. He’s not a big pack mark, so the 6-6-6 rule at centre clearances probably doesn’t do him that many favours, only if he’s the one roving the ball (which he can do and snap from 55m out).
    -Mundy is too old to start with for mine. I had him last year and picked him up half way through the year and he did ok.

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  10. Come to think of it, I had Treloar a few year’s back, week after week he’d dominate, but the SC gods didn’t like him and would score him harshly. Heppell’s the same. On the other end of the spectrum you had players like the Bont and Macrae that seemingly raked up points out of nowhere. Wonder whose going to be SC’s lovechild this year? Funny feeling it’ll be Yeo, dunno why, maybe because he has lost DPP like Macrae the year before?

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