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Its the forward line stupid

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1 minute ago, dieter said:

Hey, Rusty, thanks for the reply. I can see you care and are as well informed as can be. 

I recall however before the season started there were murmurs about his foot/toe. I watched a lot of those early games and he just didn't seem to be moving properly. No doubt - as you point out - he was maybe trying too bloody hard but - like Ray Biffin - I'm not the only one who noticed things were a wee bit awry with the Tom. 

All good Dieter.  I'm just taking Tom as genuine when he said he's had the best pre-season in three seasons and was ready for a big year of improvement on last season (2018).

Turf toe issues yes but that was 2018.  I suspect you are referring to lag comments/concerns on D'land early this season referring back to problems he was having the year before that did hamper his ability to perform on occasions....

McDonald edging closer to return

Apr 24, 2018 3:58PM
 
I’m close to playing, but more importantly, I feel confident that it’s going to be good for the rest of the year – hopefully. You can’t ever predict the rest of the season or the future. I’m feeling really confident and where it’s at
Tom McDonald
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TOM McDonald said he was “going really well” and edging closer to a return after a frustrating start to the year with a foot injury.  

The key tall, who has yet to play an AFL match this season, said he was now at the point where he was running with no pain.

“I feel really good running around on the field. I’m about to start some main training with the group, so all of the boxes have been ticked from a rehab point-of-view,” he told Melbourne Media.

“I’m close to playing, but more importantly, I feel confident that it’s going to be good for the rest of the year – hopefully. You can’t ever predict the rest of the season or the future. I’m feeling really confident and where it’s at.

“I’m glad we took the time to rest it properly and build-up slowly. I’m getting some positive news that it’s not too far away. The good thing is that I don’t feel any pain and I don’t feel like I’m carrying anything, so I’m really happy.”

McDonald said it had been “a fine balance” between resting and pushing the boundaries in regards to his return.  

“When I originally found out about the injury, I was probably a bit shocked at how long we originally thought I’d need to rest to get over it,” he said.

“On further diagnosis and realising that toes can be a little bit tricky to heal – they don’t heal as quickly as a sore finger does or something like that.

“I’ve come to terms that you’ve got to be patient and you don’t want to cause any long-term issues by pushing through foot pain. I’ve tried to be smart, but “I’ve pushed the envelope as well, got better and improved the feeling of it, which still maintaining some ability with my footy.

“Hopefully I’ll play soon and I’ll be back before I expected, but until I actually play, I’m not sure.”

McDonald said it was like a ‘turf-toe’ incident and he felt the problem occur during an inside drill.

“We were doing some tackling and contact work inside, in bare feet, and as we do all of our stuff in boots, I reckon my feet weren’t as conditioned to doing stuff bare foot,” he said.

“Your foot and toe gets jammed up a little bit more, so that’s where it started, but it started as a niggly toe, which AFL footballers have every week – a sore foot or a sore toe. You get your feet trodden on – but you don’t know if you’ve if you’ve just been trodden on or you get something wrong.

“In hindsight, I probably should’ve taken it a bit more serious, but things like this happen all of the time. They eventually take care of themselves when you do your recovery right.

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46 minutes ago, Clint Bizkit said:

The number of times Melksham was completely stationary when the ball was kicked to him on Friday night was hilarious.

Sometimes stationary works CB.  Mr Miyagi says hello...

giphy.gif.39e74ce4824ab1f34c6cc576d36e0c9f.gif

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4 hours ago, Rusty Nails said:

T-Mac by his own admission never played with any hampering injury and was cherry ripe.  Said himself he had a severe form issue up till the meniscus that took him out in Rnd 16 (from memory).

Not sure why so many are parroting this as if it's an accepted fact on D'land.  Fake news.

Are you kidding? You believe him. Cherry ripe?

Anyone with eyes could see he was hamletef in his movements, pretty much right up to the bye, but particularly early when he could barely bend over, couldn't jump or kick over 40 metres.

No coincedence his short form reversal coincided with his evident improved freedom of movement post bye.

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49 minutes ago, binman said:

Are you kidding? You believe him. Cherry ripe?

Anyone with eyes could see he was hamletef in his movements, pretty much right up to the bye, but particularly early when he could barely bend over, couldn't jump or kick over 40 metres.

No coincedence his short form reversal coincided with his evident improved freedom of movement post bye.

I can only go on what Tommy said in both radio interviews 6 weeks apart Bin.

"No issues, best pre-season in 3 years, was expecting a big improvement on 2018 output.  Increased weight program, tried everything to get out of form slump, spoke to pyschologists/sports science and other ppl around club to rectify, purely a belief/confidence thing etc etc".

You say he's lieing i'm prepared to accept it was a form slump with no issues pre-season as he said on multiple occasions when asked.

Maybe someone stomped on his toe at one point when you were watching him as restricted.  Who knows.  [censored] happens on the field sometimes which can impact short term etc.

Edited by Rusty Nails

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We lost games even though we had more scoring shots, and we lost games after smashing teams with I50’s. The question is why? I believe, and I’m not a coach, that it’s a few things combined.

1. Our goal kicking needs a lot of work, we missed a lot of easy shots on goal with little pressure. (Pressure at AFL standed at least.)

2. Our mids and forwards aren’t on the same page, to be fair a consistent 22 would probably help. Hopefully our new fitness bloke will help with that.

3. Our skills and decision making need to improve. Either our players miss hitting up our leading forward or they handball to another player who is either under pressure or fumbles, or their handball is crap putting the other player under pressure etc. I believe this is causing the leading forwards to double back, abort leads or just be out of position when said under pressure player just bombs the ball in.

Surely our highly paid coaches and players know this though, I’m just an armchair critic after all. 😉

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What can we get for Wiederman from the pies?

Pick 9  to a cameo forward who has played 5 or 6 reasonable games over 3 years 

I think we over invested.

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9 hours ago, binman said:

Are you kidding? You believe him. Cherry ripe?

Anyone with eyes could see he was hamletef in his movements, pretty much right up to the bye, but particularly early when he could barely bend over, couldn't jump or kick over 40 metres.

No coincedence his short form reversal coincided with his evident improved freedom of movement post bye.

Definitely hampered during the year but kept plugging away. The main issue here is that we miss manager players injuries.  Should have rested and been given the chance to have a good run at it injury free. 

Edited by Demons1858
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6 hours ago, Males said:

We lost games even though we had more scoring shots, and we lost games after smashing teams with I50’s. The question is why? I believe, and I’m not a coach, that it’s a few things combined.

1. Our goal kicking needs a lot of work, we missed a lot of easy shots on goal with little pressure. (Pressure at AFL standed at least.)

2. Our mids and forwards aren’t on the same page, to be fair a consistent 22 would probably help. Hopefully our new fitness bloke will help with that.

3. Our skills and decision making need to improve. Either our players miss hitting up our leading forward or they handball to another player who is either under pressure or fumbles, or their handball is crap putting the other player under pressure etc. I believe this is causing the leading forwards to double back, abort leads or just be out of position when said under pressure player just bombs the ball in.

Surely our highly paid coaches and players know this though, I’m just an armchair critic after all. 😉

Our skills were ok last year although we still had i50s wasted. Think we are less fit and tired mentally which leads to poor concentration and form. Fitness area thankfully is having a much needed revamp

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1 minute ago, Demons1858 said:

Our skills were ok last year although we still had i50s wasted. Think we are less fit and tired mentally which leads to poor concentration and form. Fitness area thankfully is having a much needed revamp

Spot on. Fatigue exposes poor technique in all sports as does pressure and lack of confidence 

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T Mac, Fritsch, Petracca, , Pickett, Jackson.....

 

The forward line in 2020 is potentially  our most exciting in a long time....  but we must clean up our act going inside 50 (gameplan).

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On 8/19/2019 at 6:25 PM, Tony Tea said:

 

But in short, it's forwards lacking space and ball carriers unable to find a forwards in space. 

Spot on. We lost our mojo, the entries were slow allowing opposition defences to get organised.

Whilst the forward line struggled for form, the problems didn't original there.

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5 hours ago, JakovichScissorKick said:

T Mac, Fritsch, Petracca, , Pickett, Jackson.....

 

The forward line in 2020 is potentially  our most exciting in a long time....  but we must clean up our act going inside 50 (gameplan).

Will Jackson and Pickett play next year in the seniors??

 

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2 minutes ago, Kent said:

Will Jackson and Pickett play next year in the seniors??

 

I think they will...if you look at how the class of 2018 went there's no reason these 2 can't make an impact.

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2 minutes ago, Kent said:

Will Jackson and Pickett play next year in the seniors??

 

I think Jackson it depends a bit on form and injury of TMac, Weid and Petty. I think they'll try playing some combination of 3 of those 4. Particularly with TMacs running and Jacksons athleticism.

Pickett in the other hand, given a promising preseason and showing some signs in the JLT I could see him playing round 1. We don't have any genuine crumbing forwards, if they want one in the side then he's a damn good chance to play straight up.

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On 8/19/2019 at 5:44 PM, dl4e said:

Our forward line was completly unfunctionable. Yes there was poor delivery into it but the players led to the wrong positions and on too many occasions could not hold marks. With TMAC out of form and the weed not taking the next step it was always going to be a stuggle. The situation with joel Smith in the pre season was farcical as I guessed he was being groomed as a full forward type. 

The only good thing I saw late in the year was Petty being tried down there. There maybe some hope there.

And the return of Fritta back where he belongs kicking goals and clunking marks!

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Barring injury, you'd expect both Jackson and Pickett to spend a bit of time in our forwardline this year. 

Neither is likely to have much impact. Ranked by importance, I think the biggest scope for our forwardline to improve comes from:

1 - McDonald rediscovering his mojo (clunking marks, 40+ goals, gives us a focal point - we're a different team when he's playing well).

2 - Close to a full season from Melksham, Fritsch and Hannan (all are relatively known quantities, all were badly missed in 2019).

3 - Continued development from at least 1 of Weideman and Petty to cement their place as a 2nd tall. Don't need either to tear games apart, but a genuine 2nd marking threat would be nice.

4 - Petracca to continue current trajectory (and more consistency over 4 quarters).

5  - The odd cameo from Pickett (if he plays 10-15 games and averages a goal and a few big tackles a game, I'd consider it a win for a first year player). 

6 - Jackson to show some positive signs (but should spend most of the year at Casey).

Oh, and some decent delivery wouldn't go astray either.

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HF: Melksham  Petty/Weid  N Jones/ANB/C Wagner/Spargo
FF: Fritsch  T Mc   Pickett/Chandler/Bedford
Int: wildcard - Jackson/Hunt/Hannan

Some combination of that is your 7 forwards. If Jackson plays a fair bit of ruck and even mid and if C Wagner or Hunt maybe rolls up to the wing rotation you can get an 8th forward in.

Probably the one missing link is the classy mid who can play on ball, wing and half forward. In other words we really need a Harley Bennell type!

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We definitely need to get our forward entries right but I think the addition of Kozzie and Jackson will help us a lot, throw in hopefully a fit Hannan and AvB, Fritch playing as a permanent forward, all of a sudden we have some serious options to go forward with. 

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You can argue about poor delivery but the fact is we got plenty of ball inside 50 last year but were unable to convert it into scores.

With Hogan gone and Garlett injured or lacking form we hoped for a 2018 repeat from Tmac and improvement from Weid. Neither eventuated.

Petracca was a plus.

So where do we improve?

Further development from Petracca  and again, hopefully a fit Tmac can do the business. Hopefully Melksham is also injury free and can reproduce that raking and accurate kicking.

Petty maybe a forward. Fritsch and Hannan have shown a bit so hopefully some consistency and an injury free run.

Jackson ? Big wraps on him but he's only a kid so it's a bonus if he shows much in first year.

Pickett? A kid and small but potentially just what we need - crumber, tackler and x factor.

Weid ? [censored] if I know what to expect but he can't survive on potential much longer.

 

So there we go - hope, potential and maybees !!!

Go Dees!!

 

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31 minutes ago, Pates said:

We definitely need to get our forward entries right but I think the addition of Kozzie and Jackson will help us a lot

I'm as excited as anyone about Kozzie's highlight reel, but it's worth remembering that he didn't make any impact in the SANFL seniors this year. He's exactly what we lack, but it might be a few years before we see more than the odd cameo I suspect. 

Jackson almost certainly won't have any meaningful impact for a few years yet.

Anything we get out of them in the meantime is a bonus.

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8 minutes ago, Bitter but optimistic said:

You can argue about poor delivery but the fact is we got plenty of ball inside 50 last year but were unable to convert it into scores.

This - it's not as though our forwards were leading into space all year and the mids kept kicking it over their heads.

The loss of Hogan, poor form and injury to key players hurt us badly, but our structure forward of center was a farce.

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2 minutes ago, Accepting Mediocrity said:

This - it's not as though our forwards were leading into space all year and the mids kept kicking it over their heads.

The loss of Hogan, poor form and injury to key players hurt us badly, but our structure forward of center was a farce.

Yes, how hard is it to have a couple of forwards blocking for each other and then leading in different directions. It was the number one reason I wanted to keep Pedersen - he did so much work off the ball that went unnoticed, but you'd look up and suddenly McDonald or Hogan was three metres clear of his opponent.

Our forward line coaching was abysmal last year - even with Weideman having no impact and McDonald struggling, there is enough talent in there to kick a competitive score.

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10 hours ago, JakovichScissorKick said:

T Mac, Fritsch, Petracca, , Pickett, Jackson.....

 

The forward line in 2020 is potentially  our most exciting in a long time....  but we must clean up our act going inside 50 (gameplan).

Reality check 

Two 18 year olds, a mid who is still playing as a forward (hasn't made it as a mid yet), and a backman with one good year as a forward; does not make a compelling forward line.  Then throw in another key forward who hasn't arrived at the AFL level yet (and the improvement required to do so, doesn't match the normal trajectory's) plus an injury prone medium size forward; and I'm not sure if it's that exciting (although your statement may still be correct which is more of an indictment of the forwards since Robbo, Neitz, Davey and co days.  Still I have fond memories of Robbo, Green, Yze, Jurrah, Wonna, etc as well.

In reality, if our forward line is to be dangerous then we need to be getting consistent AFL level output from at least 4 of them. Which I expect would come from:

TMac
Jones
Fritsch
Trac (though he should be a midfielder by now)

This leaves two spots for Hunt, Melk's, Hannan, Petty, Weids, Jackson, Petty.  I'd like to see though
 

Melks TMac Dunkley
Jones Trac Fritsch

With Picket moving through for Jones and Melks should they get exposed for lack of pressure, noting he can't be expected to impact a full game and particularily week after week.

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I am a bit disappointed to hear that Joel Smith is training with the backs. I would like to see him play forward, as I actually think a smaller forward line including McDonald, Smith, Fritsch, Melksham, Petracca and a small forward could be our best combination.

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