These guys are where I expect the most differences in teams. The lack of Defense cows means we need more of them, and there are a lot of good options, and some not good but still thinkable ones.
The safe and solid with some upside Premiums:
Jake Lloyd – Last year I thought he was a terrible pick, being priced 10 or more points over what he would score. Which he was. This year I think he is a good pick, priced near his floor and with some upside. Only 28
Jayden Short – With Bashar Houli retired he can be expected to do at least a little better than last season. Probably not much worse.
Jordan Ridley – Could very easily score right around what he is priced to. Would not be a shock. Could also go back to intercept marking and add 5-7 points. No way to know. But he might, which is more than we can say about a lot of others.
The safe and solid Premiums:
Tom Stewart – He is actually 28, which is odd when you look at his history and he has only been playing at the AFL level for five seasons. He could drop back down five or go up another five.
Jack Crisp – Also 28, but with ten years in the AFL. Not as good as Stewart the last three years. He has not missed a game for two years longer than Stewart has been in the AFL, which is pretty amazing. No reason to think he will go for more than a few points different than he did last year. Pretty much the safest and solidest player I can think of. (No Jinx!)
The dodgy for some reason Premiums:
Jack Ziebell – Sort of an anti-Lloyd. Last year he was a huge obvious good pick, this year, well, not so much. He might keep it up, but he did suffer some when Aaron Hall tooks some kick-ins from him later in the season. Between his being 31, his no longer having kick-ins all to himself, and his injury history. I wouldn’t risk him.
Daniel Rich – He had his first ever premium year at the age of 30. Meaning he is 31 coming off an average 10 points higher than his previous best. Does not sound like a great risk, and lots of other options down back. On the other hand, he is not so old he can’t just keep it up one more season.
Luke Ryan – Only 26 and priced 8 points below his career high in 2020. If I knew he was healthy I’d be very tempted to take a punt on him. I don’t think he will score much lower than he is priced to. Average with a chance of upside. The main issue with him is Short and Lloyd look like better picks and Ridley similar. But, unlike Short and Ridley, he has put up a 107 average the past, which is over five points better then they have even done. So, maybe he is not so bad at all. Depends on his health.
The have upside near-premiums:
Lachie Whitfield – Sigh, this guy. Feels like he is always hurt, which he isn’t really. Just often enough we remember being burned by him. Clearly overpriced in 2020 and clearly underpriced in 2022. Only 27. I hate that he is so obviously a good pick and that being priced at 92.3 with past averages of 104.5 and 111.2, and before that 99.9 and 97.6 I will almost certainly have to take him. Besides he plays a full season every other year, so he is due right. Right….?
Caleb Daniel – He is priced below his last two seasons by enough to notice but his role seems to be in flux. Must be a Bulldog. Only 25, so could even go higher than in the past. I just don’t feel he is a good risk, because he could end up averaging when he is priced to, which is not really good enough.
James Sicily – He is priced to average 82.3. The last three seasons in which he played he averaged 102.9, 93.8, and 105.1. Of course he played 11,22, and 14 matches. And, of course he is a flog. Oh, and he is returning from injury having missed all of last season. In a team with a nice backline that sort of happened while he was away. First thing, he is with Whitfield in the underpriced- with-known upside club, and compared to Sicily, Whitfield is Jack Crisp. If you only have one I’d be all in on Lachie. There are certainly logic reason to consider Sicily, but I never even considered putting him in my team. Too much could go wrong. Yes, he could average 105 for a cost of 82.3 and I loves me low cost per point players….but…the risks….
The have upside Mid-Pricer:
George Hewett – So, proceed at 73.3 age 26, once averaged 88. I know Tom Mitchel did a lot better when he was no longer being ridden by Horse, but he only went up 14 points the next year. Hewett going up 14 points gets him to 87.3. Twenty points gets him to 93.3, which is pretty good for what he costs. If you think he can actually add twenty points or more to his average, heck, 17 points to his average, then he is probably ok or a little better. In practice D6s don’t have to be great, and if you can use the cash you save on him maybe he is ok. I myself am more inclined to go up or down from him, but, he’s an acceptable risk if you believe.
The guys with injury issues:
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