Feeling Lucky: With his elite speed and rebound across the half-back combined with his lethal right foot, Nathan Wilson ($417,000) was a huge pick up for Fremantle during the trade period to fill the final piece of their backline puzzle. His average has been increasing the last 5 years and finished on an average of 76 in 2017. To become a keeper, he would need a 14ppg jump in average and with only 5 of his 24 games last year exceeding 90 points, it looks like a far cry. Wilson was forced to lockdown on occasion for scores of 29, 37 and 46 which drived down his average but when allowed to run and carry for the whole game, he knocked out scores of 104 and 127. With his move to the Dockers, expect them to utilise his pace more than his lockdown skills, so those poor scores should drop out. But will it be enough to drive his average to 90+ though? One to watch during JLT and how the use the other half backs in Blakely and Ryan, but my thought is we need his pace first and foremost.
Lock and Load: A guy writing this article with an avatar such as mine may be a bit bias, but if Nathan Fyfe ($597,900) isn’t a lock then I don’t know what is. He opened up his 2017 campaign with a 114 average from the first 5 however the issue with Fyfe on a SuperCoach perspective though is despite injury, he is still likely to play and then went onto average 89 from Rd6 up until the byes with a bruised sternum. After an extra week off over the byes to recover, he came home like a freight train and averaged 126 for the final 8 rounds. He put on his aerial display and tore the Irish to shreds in the International Rules series and is fit, firing and ready to get back to his best – I think watching Dangerfield and Dusty take over the mantle the last 2 years has been hard on him and he’ll be out to reclaim the Brownlow. If you want midfielders with the capability of averaging in excess of 120 with ease, then you really want Fyfe in your team.
Feeling Lucky: When a clubs best midfielder can’t play their normal role for a while, someone needs to replace them and between Rd6 and the byes when Fyfe was injured, Connor Blakely ($490,300) was the man they looked at and he went on to average 104 over this time. He impressed RTB over his stints playing a halfback/midfield role that even when Fyfe returned fully fit, he kept him playing the same role and the support of Fyfe helped his average jump to 121 over the next 4 games. So, with an average of 110 over the course of 11 weeks, he looks a bargain at just under $500k due to a slow start and a season ending injured game of 7 driving down his average. Feeling lucky with a Rd14 mid-pricer?
Money Maker: I originally didn’t have any Fremantle rookies, with the only couple being expensive (very slow burners) or most likely won’t feature until later in the season, but there is just something special about Andrew Brayshaw ($198,300). He’s earning respect from the players fast and already leading from the front at training, not afraid to put in line some of the seniors if need be. Was picked up for his elite disposal skills around the contest, tacking prowess and ability to move forward and hit the scoreboard. He is a very smart footballer and if he went at pick #1 I think you would look back in 5 years time happy with your pick. Expect him to walk straight into best 22 Rd1 and a play half forward/midfield role.
Feeling Lucky: This is a little less about feeling lucky about the ability of Sean Darcy ($432,900), but more about the unreliability of Sandilands soft tissue. Putting up some solid performances in his first 8 AFL games, he put up scores including 87, 93, 99 and 99. He has all the tools to emulate Kreuzer – same height with solid hit out skills, loves to tackle and with a full pre-season and a few kilos dropped, he will be able to move around the ground for more possessions and providing a forward hit up target. Scoring 95+ on a consistent basis isn’t 2018 is not out of question for Darcy – especially with Fyfe and Neale at his feet. I personally wanted one more mediocre year and throw 22 games at Darcy as solo ruck with Cox rotating from forward for ruck relief duties, but nevertheless, Sandilands will still be around for another year, until he is injured of course. The question is, how long do you think he lasts?
Feeling Lucky: Putting in one of the best solo all rounder performances in modern history last season with 32 disposals and 6 goals in a single game, Michael Walters ($478,300) puts the temptation on many SuperCoaches yet again. His best stint of the season was between Rd6-Rd14 averaging 93 when Fyfe was under the injury cloud whereas he averaged 81 for the other games throughout the season. When played through the midfield he will put up great scores, but he is also one of only a few Dockers who is capable of kicking 40+ goals a year so will need to play forward at times so will also throw up some shockers too. If Matera/Ballantyne and more importantly Bennell lines up Rd1 and remains healthy, expect Walters to have more highs than lows.
If you would like to submit your own team review, post in the comments below and I will get in touch with you. Have any questions about Fremantle players? Fire away!
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