2018 Player Review – Zach Merrett

Written by Thommo on February 19 2018

Position: Midfielder

2018 Price: $600,600

2017 Average: 109.2

2017 Games: 21

Past Averages (2016 – 2014): 111, 88, 64

2017 IN SHORT

Even with the return of the banned Bombers, Zach Merrett started 2017 where he left off in 2016, scoring eleven tonnes from his first seventeen games with a low score of 83 points. He racked up 31 possessions per game in that time and was making footy look easy.

Unfortunately, just when many Supercoaches were feeling rich and jumping on the Merrett bandwagon, he had a few setbacks. Twice in the final 5 matches he was tagged causing a season low of 67 points against the Dogs and he was also suspended after punching Plowman in Round 20. All up he only scored one tonne in the final 5 rounds but at least he scored that 135 points in the Supercoach finals from 31 possessions and 4 goals against the Dockers.

PROs

  1. Merrett is only turning 23 late in 2018 so he’s still improving and as I’ve said before, this is his fifth season, time for him to really jump to the elite!
  2. He is very consistent, recording 27 tonnes from 43 matches in the last wo seasons. That may not sound great but 9 of those sub-100 scores were 90s and Merrett only scored under 80 once in 2018.
  3. Merrett has a decent ceiling with 11 of his last 27 tonnes going over 130 points.
  4. Love ‘em or hate them, the Bombers are improving.
  5. He has a handy bye: Round 13!
  6. He’s durable, playing every game in the last two seasons (barring the one game missed through suspension).

CONs

  1. The taggers only appeared late in 2017 and had some success on Merrett so will we see more tagging in 2018?
  2. The Bombers seem to have 30 players spending time in the midfield this preseason.
  3. Merrett is a below average kick and kicks short too often meaning he scores higher in AFL Fantasy than Supercoach.

CONCLUSION

Zach Merrett seems a pretty safe bet in 2018. He has scored consistently for two years and he is at the age when he should be still improving. Taggers are a slight concern, as is the arrival of midfield-forwards in Devon Smith and Jake “Gut-Tatt” Stringer, but these seem unlikely to hurt him overly.

To be honest, it’s hard to find a significant flaw with Merrett.

THOMMO’S GUT

Disclaimer: Right now, Merrett is my M3. I am after upside in my midfielders and I can see plenty of upside in young Zach. He wins plenty of the ball and just needs to clean up his ball use a bit, something that should happen with experience.

The way my gut feels it, Merrett gives you a 110 point average at worst, but could go higher.

And what other midfielders have a Round 12 bye? Well, plenty, but none that I trust.

Is Zach Merrett in your current starting squad?

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17 thoughts on “2018 Player Review – Zach Merrett”

  1. | The Bombers seem to have 30 players spending time in the midfield this preseason.

    No truer words have ever been written.

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    1. Don’t worry, he’ll remain a POD. Danger, T.Mitchell, D.Martin, Fyfe and Cripps will be the top most 5 selected mids so you would be starting him over one of them 5 more than likely.

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    1. Basically this. He’s a lock in my Fantasy and RDT sides, but he’s further down the pecking order in SuperCoach-land. Still, if several of my preferred starting mids got injured in the preseason, he could certainly work his way into my side before round 1.

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  2. Had him in my team for a while but had to re shuffle and have downgraded him to parker. Great option though and will only get better with age .

    (also i believe Merret has the round 13 bye not 12)

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  3. Well summed up Thommo. I’ve gone for value in the mids this year, and I think Zac might be priced near his maximum. Definite upgrade target though.

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  4. Awesome review Thommo. Interesting thoughts on Merret’s kicking, I’ve always thought he was a very good kick. 70% DE is pretty solid for someone who kicks as much as he does. Although he does have a bad habit of going for a bit too much with his kicks sometimes (probably picked it up from BJ), which can make him look like an ordinary kick at times. He should continue to improve his decision making as he plays more games and not go for too many pin point passes.

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    1. Hey UD, champion data list him as a below average kick. Sounds like he kicks short often so his retention rate should be higher. They also rate his forward 50 entry retention rate as poor.

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      1. Well I can’t argue with CD. I do think those stats are a result of poor decision making, rather than being a hack kick like Treloar. It’s much easier too improve decision making so I’d be surprised if he didn’t improve those stats a lot in the next year or 2.

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        1. I can’t argue with your logic which is why I have selected him at present. Both he and fhe Bombers ha e plenty of natural improvement to come.

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  5. Zac has not yet developed the contested possession side of his game and until he does will be find it hard to move into the elite bracket in SuperCoach. Oliver who is a contested beast and Kelly are two that have more upside and share the same bye as the Bombers although both are priced slightly higher.
    Pendlebury and Adams are definitely worth a look priced around Zac.
    The Bombers midfield is currently a work in progress with the retirement of Watson and they had one of the worst midfield units last year.

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