Howdy all and welcome to my team preview for 2022. First time I’ve done one of these so let’s run through it line by line.
I’ve tried not to be heavily influenced by the pre-season ever since Darcy MacPherson made me pick him with some standout performances a couple of years ago, only to stink it up in the season proper, hence the no Cripps, Heeney etc, even though I’ve been incredibly tempted! Let’s get started!
I see a lot of risk in this backline, I’ll be completely honest. The only guy I’ve had sitting there all pre season is Short, who I think could be in for a super year as the Tigers sole avenue out of defence. Ryan has elite scoring history and can pull out a triple figure score from minimal touches if he uses it well. Whitfield and Sicily both come with risk but I think for their price, and the potential end of season output (both good enough for top 6-8 defenders) is too good to pass up on. Of the rookies, Sinn and De Koning would be fielded if these four guys are in my round 1 team, but like a lot of us, rookies will change depending on who gets announced on the team sheet a week from now.
Between Steele and Macrae, it was a real toss up. At the end of the day, the Saints captain saved me 14K and come the end of the season, I don’t think they’ll be much difference. Also, his 150 point scores seem to come a little more often (or at least it seems that way). The same could be said between Oliver and Miller, but due to a couple of seasons of previous ownership, Satan gets in on bias. Either way I’ll be aiming to have all four by season end. I’m backing in Wines as a POD, and keep on looking at his post-bye form from last year as an indication that I’ve made a safe choice. Neale seems somewhat obvious, while Brayshaw could well push his average into the high 110’s in my opinion. JHF, Daicos and Stephens are pretty common for M6-8, while the bench will change once again depending on round 1 teams. (Although I’m tempted to keep Clark as a loophole for the start of the year).
Grundy will ideally do his usual and average that 115-125 range, while Dixon provides that DPP if he gets the round 1 start. Witts has been in my team all pre-season and his AAMI performance locked him in. In an ideal world, he makes 100K and is a upgrade to one of Gawn or Darcy if they have a couple of bad weeks, or he plays well enough to average 95 and is one of my last upgrades. Or of course, it completely backfires and he stagnates around this price and I find myself using 3 trades trying to correct it. For me, I’m willing to take the risk.
I had my doubts over Dunkley but I said the same last year and he was incredible before injury struck, plus he was everywhere in the preseason so he seems a safe pick. Dusty is at his cheapest in ages and I can’t pass for him at that price, knowing that he is capable enough of being the #1 forward (and the fact he usually goes nuts in round 1). Butters seems about ready to breakout, while Coniglio for 261K is a steal if he can produce anything in the 90’s, which is well within his reach. Rachele and McCartin look set for round 1, but might be moved to other lines if required, with Hollands and Hayes being at the mercy of the selection table.
So there it is, my current but no where near finalised 2022 starting lineup. I’ve only got $1,800 left in the bank but that’s the way I like it, may as well use as much of the starting balance if I can, although I admit this doesn’t give me much wiggle room if my rookies have to be moved around.
Keen to hear some constructive thoughts down below!
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