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Game plans, tactics and all that jazz


binman
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31 minutes ago, Doug Reemer said:

One thing I noticed last year. Maybe it was due to the fact that our playing list got more tired as the year went on living in the Bubble Boy!

Correct me if I'm wrong. But we recruited Jake Lever as an intercept CHB right? and then we went out and got May who can lock down but also intercept.

SO!

Why on earth does Max Gawn continually float back and take intercepting marks in the back line and always remain a kick behind the play?

I have always thought his best and most damaging football is when he floats forward and hits the scoreboard? IE his QB game he kicked 3 in 2016/7. The Geelong and Hawthorn finals we won? Last I checked there aren't many defenders that can stand eye to eye and spoil or out mark him? 

REST HIM AND PUSH HIM FORWARD FFS Goodwin!

Often wondered this my self!!!

defeats the purpose and thrashes Max to the Max

Just another glaring problem with a poorly designed game plan

We do not play to our strengths

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35 minutes ago, Doug Reemer said:

One thing I noticed last year. Maybe it was due to the fact that our playing list got more tired as the year went on living in the Bubble Boy!

Correct me if I'm wrong. But we recruited Jake Lever as an intercept CHB right? and then we went out and got May who can lock down but also intercept.

SO!

Why on earth does Max Gawn continually float back and take intercepting marks in the back line and always remain a kick behind the play?

I have always thought his best and most damaging football is when he floats forward and hits the scoreboard? IE his QB game he kicked 3 in 2016/7. The Geelong and Hawthorn finals we won? Last I checked there aren't many defenders that can stand eye to eye and spoil or out mark him? 

REST HIM AND PUSH HIM FORWARD FFS Goodwin!

i think that's likely to continue with Jackson on the scene. Jacko might start in a forward position then they'll have him come up to the ball and ruck the forward half stoppages while Gawn continues to drop back behind the ball for the intercepts.

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We have not maximised (easy pun) Max on so many levels.

Is it coaching or is it simply that ruckmen are not that influential in the modern game? My thoughts tend towards the latter but rarely do you see an unusual play involving Gawn.

The strategy just seems to be play him into the ground with the inevitable soreness and light injury.

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Goals from number 1 ruckmen:

English 8, McInerney 6, Goldstein 6, Naitanui 5, Darcy 5, Grundy 3, Sinclair 3, Lycett 2, Soldo 2, Gawn 1, Witts 0, O'Brien 0, Pittonet 0.

Basically, no ruckman really kicks goals. The way they get goals is through mobility or when rucking int he forward line. The problem is that most ruckmen aren't quick enough to get to the position to do damage against a smaller opponent, so the only plays where they can get forward are in slow plays with the defence camped out in numbers inside 50. The odds of marking this kick are really, really, low. You're much better off camping Gawn outside 50 ready to intercept the defensive kick and give yourself another opportunity to score. 

The other problem with Gawn forward is that he offers zero defensive pressure inside 50, due to his size and mobility. This allows players to break a line and get the ball past our defensive zone.

This may be different with Jackson, who is far more mobile. He has the ability to link up and out run his opponent into the forward line before the numbers get there. This is like what happens with English for the Dogs.

Gawn may play forward for the occasional burst to mix things up but I'd be surprised if it's any more than that.

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2 hours ago, Demon Dude said:

i think that's likely to continue with Jackson on the scene. Jacko might start in a forward position then they'll have him come up to the ball and ruck the forward half stoppages while Gawn continues to drop back behind the ball for the intercepts.

Id rather Gawn be the hit up option from half back into the middle/wing.

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1 hour ago, Axis of Bob said:

Goals from number 1 ruckmen:

English 8, McInerney 6, Goldstein 6, Naitanui 5, Darcy 5, Grundy 3, Sinclair 3, Lycett 2, Soldo 2, Gawn 1, Witts 0, O'Brien 0, Pittonet 0.

Basically, no ruckman really kicks goals. The way they get goals is through mobility or when rucking int he forward line. The problem is that most ruckmen aren't quick enough to get to the position to do damage against a smaller opponent, so the only plays where they can get forward are in slow plays with the defence camped out in numbers inside 50. The odds of marking this kick are really, really, low. You're much better off camping Gawn outside 50 ready to intercept the defensive kick and give yourself another opportunity to score. 

The other problem with Gawn forward is that he offers zero defensive pressure inside 50, due to his size and mobility. This allows players to break a line and get the ball past our defensive zone.

This may be different with Jackson, who is far more mobile. He has the ability to link up and out run his opponent into the forward line before the numbers get there. This is like what happens with English for the Dogs.

Gawn may play forward for the occasional burst to mix things up but I'd be surprised if it's any more than that.

Note that in Gawns two best years (both AA)

He kicked 16 in 2016 and 13 in 2018.

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5 hours ago, Doug Reemer said:

One thing I noticed last year. Maybe it was due to the fact that our playing list got more tired as the year went on living in the Bubble Boy!

Correct me if I'm wrong. But we recruited Jake Lever as an intercept CHB right? and then we went out and got May who can lock down but also intercept.

SO!

Why on earth does Max Gawn continually float back and take intercepting marks in the back line and always remain a kick behind the play?

I have always thought his best and most damaging football is when he floats forward and hits the scoreboard? IE his QB game he kicked 3 in 2016/7. The Geelong and Hawthorn finals we won? Last I checked there aren't many defenders that can stand eye to eye and spoil or out mark him? 

REST HIM AND PUSH HIM FORWARD FFS Goodwin!

I assume they think Max is more likely to mark the ball kicked by the opponent than if it kicked by a teammate!

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On 2/2/2021 at 5:30 AM, Pollyanna said:

It's going to be interesting.  Is it mandatory to have someone on the mark who has to stand there?  I'm guessing for this to work it is, otherwise you can have that player 5m back from the mark (i.e. not "on the mark") and free to move laterally.

This is a good question. Any answers?

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"This means teams cannot “hand over” who is standing on the mark from one player to another. Often the man on the mark peels off to defend a player running past the player with the ball, and is replaced on the mark by a teammate. This can no longer happen.

It also means a tall player such as Collingwood’s Mason Cox cannot replace a teammate on the mark when their opponent is taking a set shot at goal."

So, which player is chosen to stand on the mark? The closest? That's going to cause issues. Or is it their designated opponent in terms of starting position? Other issues.

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29 minutes ago, Grr-owl said:

This is a good question. Any answers?

It was discussed on a radio show the other evening and the comment from the interviewee is that there may well be times when it is better not to stand the mark at all and instead that player moves to fill a hole or provide an extra man downfield.

TBH why stand the mark and not be able to move when you can move 5 metres back and do what you like?

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On 2/8/2021 at 10:52 AM, Axis of Bob said:

Gawn may play forward for the occasional burst to mix things up but I'd be surprised if it's any more than that.

Agree.

I actually think maxy playing in defence as an intercept mark/spoil  was a positive tactical move by Goody last season.

Footy is more than ever about territory. The tigers template of moving the ball forward at all costs and gaining meters (one we have largely adopted) has won three of the last four flags.  If you count the doggies, who employed much the same philosophy to win the 2016 flag, that is four of the last 5 flags with a similar template. 

Sure some teams employ a chip and hold model (eg Cats, Eagles), and all teams do so more than they did even two years ago, but once a team has elected to go forward territory is king. And more often than not that involves a long kick to a crowded forward line where the key forward does his best to bring it ground and give a small a chance at crumbing.  Hence ground ball get being now being a key stat. 

And this predictability of entry is perfect for max who can stand in the hole and take a pack mark from the high ball in. Lever can still play the intercept role but with those packs he is more to jump and spoil then take a contested mark. Which is a better option than a forward marking it, but not nearly as good an option as Maxy marking as the ball is on the ground from a spoil.  

Everything old is new again and the way max drops back reminds me of the way Teasdale used to play. 

Edited by binman
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On 3/26/2021 at 7:49 PM, Grr-owl said:

Could be a simple one: With the changes in rules and the resulting one on ones in the forward line, has the game just come to us, for once?

Good question.

And thanks for posting in this thread Grr-owl. 

Now that we have kicked off the season i'm keen for some more football nerd tactical talk. 

Perhaps we can kick off season 2021 with some questions for discussion 

  • What will the impact of the rules changes be?
  • Will, as Grr-owl suggests, there be more one on ones in the forward line?
  • With the changes in rules favour us, particularly in terms of recruiting Brown?
  • Has our game plan changed form a tactical perspective over the time Goody has been coach - and if so how?
  • What is the go with the reduction in clearances this year?
  • Other? 
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2 minutes ago, binman said:

Now that we have kicked off the season i'm keen for some more football nerd tactical talk. 

Perhaps we can kick off season 2021 with some questions for discussion 

  • Has our game plan changed form a tactical perspective over the time Goody has been coach - and if so how?

Funny you should ask that binman. I was wondering the same thing. Here are my thoughts on that question:

 

From Goody's first two seasons we have made some pretty big tactical changes to way we play the game.

In some respects some of the fundamentals have changed.

For example winning clearances is not as an important indicator/focus as it was in 2018 and 2019.

To be clear clearances are still important - just not central to our game plan. If i was to put a figure on it i reckon the club would be happy to end the year on break even in clearance differential as opposed to being say plus three in 2018

And some fundamentals have not changed - for example winning contested ball remains critical.

The tactical shift commenced in 2019, when we took the opportunity of a lost season to introduce tempo footy (which also helped mitigate the risk of demoralising thrashings), something we took into 2020, and was on display in both our two games this season.

In 2020, particularly the second half of the season, we moved away from being a stoppage and clearance based team first and foremost to a team :

  • that has shifted the dial to trying to win pure clearances that result in scoring opportunities - even though in doing so we 'lose' more clearances than we have historically done
  • when we 'lose' clearances we put the ball carrier under pressure, force a poor kick or handball and look to create a  turnover from HB that we can counter attack from and set up scoring chains
  • that is now all about intercept marks (Cameron will  now be sweating on how to prevent  Lever and May having field day)

This tactical shift has been really evident this year.

As evidence of this shift we have had different mixes in our center square set ups - eg Kossie starting each quarter there, Jordon playing as a mid (unlike the bulls, most of his possessions are uncontested), Nibbler and Harmes  (they used Melksham this way too last the end of last year).     

Another example is letting one player try and win the contested ball (instead of multiple players at the contest) and having players on the outside to receive if they do win it - which if it is Viney, Trac or Oliver is more often than not the case.

Jordon, Spargo and Kossie have all been great this year being that outside the contest receiver, as was Salem on the weekend.

Another shift, albeit a less dramatic one, is we are now all about territory. I guess we always have been - and in some ways it was key to our tactics in 2018 - but territory is a kpi again. Get it forward. The difference between now and 2018 is that we are prepared to give ground to make ground now. 

All of the above speaks to a team that is evolving tactically and contradicts the erroneous narrative that Goody as coach has not evolved.

I also think it speaks to some of our challenges - these sort of big tactical shifts can't be easy to implement and some players will find it harder than others to change. I wonder if brayshaw is one such example.

On Gus, he better learn how to adapt because his future at the dees is on the wing. With our new way of playing the very last thing we need is another inside bull.   

 

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1 minute ago, binman said:

Good question.

And thanks for posting in this thread Grr-owl. 

Now that we have kicked off the season i'm keen for some more football nerd tactical talk. 

Perhaps we can kick off season 2021 with some questions for discussion 

  • What will the impact of the rules changes be?
  • Will, as Grr-owl suggests, there be more one on ones in the forward line?
  • With the changes in rules favour us, particularly in terms of recruiting Brown?
  • Has our game plan changed form a tactical perspective over the time Goody has been coach - and if so how?
  • What is the go with the reduction in clearances this year?
  • Other? 

Ben Brown could be the best forward in the competition with space in the forward line and no chopping of the arms.

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27 minutes ago, binman said:

On Gus, he better learn how to adapt because his future at the dees is on the wing. With our new way of playing the very last thing we need is another inside bull.   

Brings up another tactical point for discussion. If Gus's future is on the wing, how does it fit with the mooted and trained TMac wing option once Weid and BBB are fit?

Then there's the glut of talls. Jackson gets VFL time to mature and blossom, fair enough. Petty too, I suspect they want to take slow given the injuries. Nothing negative for him to play a solid season in the 2's to be primed. 

How do these factors fit into the evolving strategy?

I sense a trade coming, possibly for Gus. Mitch Brown will bow and and not be replaced with another tall. How can we play the list to bring in Zac Merrett?

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13 minutes ago, Fat Tony said:

Ben Brown could be the best forward in the competition with space in the forward line and no chopping of the arms.

Assuming of course that there will be more space for forwards. Something I'm not convinced about.

The Dees gave Freo and the Saints precious little space up forward (or the tigers and dogs in the practice matches for that matter) and as consequence both teams struggled to get marks inside 50 and score.  

My gut feeling is that the increase in pace on the game, which is the driver of open forward lines because the ball gets in there quick, is less a function of the rule changes, more a function of the psychology of the players.

Carlton have been very aggressive with their ball movement. But are two zip down. Lets see if Teague remains as aggressive. I suspect he won't be and they will revert to slower ball movement, because whilst fast ball movement creates more one on ones and helps a team score it also exposes to them to the rebound.  And a teams like the tigers and dogs will kill them on transition.

 

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@binmanI suspect the theory of kicking forward for territory into forward 50, is just a product of disciplined data analysis and understanding the key drivers of scoring. 

For example, if we outline the series of outcomes that could occur from such a kick (assuming the ball hits a contest):

Defensive Outcomes:

1. Defensive Mark

2. Defensive Groundball Get - required exit

3. Defensive Free Kick

4. 50/50 - stoppage 

Vs.

Offensive Outcomes

1. Offensive Mark - with opportunity to score

2. Offensive Groundball Get - with opportunity to score

3. Offensive Free Kick - with opportunity to score

4. Stoppage - with opportunity to score

Clearly the impact of the game of the offensive outcomes is greater given their ability to impact most important stat in the game - points scored. So which of the offensive outcomes generates more points? If we believe Richmond - stats tell us 2, and 4.  I think its interesting to reflect on whether they generate more 2 and 4s through having Lynch, or just defensive players taking less clean marks (which raises a different question - should defensive players EVER try to take contested marks? - consider for example Max King's third goal on the weekend where all three Melbourne players tried to take a contested mark, which was easily crumbed by King). It's clear from the outcomes that defensive players have absolutely more to lose from missing a contested mark, than the offensive player - in my view this should shade the way that umpires view the behaviour of "marking" forwards in the modern game around the contested mark.

For me, this means that for real success (in terms of points) in the territory model you described, a couple things are crucial.  The ability to create contests - either through personnel or midfielders being able to get the ball inside 50.  I know we disagree on this, but I still think clearances, and by extension inside 50s are paramount in this way.  A tall forward line up able to split contests, and small forwards capable of driving high numbers of 2, and 4.  Either through locking the ball in, or getting groundball get like goals. 

Alternative to this is to create separation and hit leading forwards and rely on goal-kicking accuracy.  This appears to be Tom McDonald and Ben Browns M.O - but does rely on higher skill and nullifies your small forwards potency to an extent. 

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1 hour ago, Altona-demon said:

@binmanI suspect the theory of kicking forward for territory into forward 50, is just a product of disciplined data analysis and understanding the key drivers of scoring. 

For example, if we outline the series of outcomes that could occur from such a kick (assuming the ball hits a contest):

Defensive Outcomes:

1. Defensive Mark

2. Defensive Groundball Get - required exit

3. Defensive Free Kick

4. 50/50 - stoppage 

Vs.

Offensive Outcomes

1. Offensive Mark - with opportunity to score

2. Offensive Groundball Get - with opportunity to score

3. Offensive Free Kick - with opportunity to score

4. Stoppage - with opportunity to score

Clearly the impact of the game of the offensive outcomes is greater given their ability to impact most important stat in the game - points scored. So which of the offensive outcomes generates more points? If we believe Richmond - stats tell us 2, and 4.  I think its interesting to reflect on whether they generate more 2 and 4s through having Lynch, or just defensive players taking less clean marks (which raises a different question - should defensive players EVER try to take contested marks? - consider for example Max King's third goal on the weekend where all three Melbourne players tried to take a contested mark, which was easily crumbed by King). It's clear from the outcomes that defensive players have absolutely more to lose from missing a contested mark, than the offensive player - in my view this should shade the way that umpires view the behaviour of "marking" forwards in the modern game around the contested mark.

For me, this means that for real success (in terms of points) in the territory model you described, a couple things are crucial.  The ability to create contests - either through personnel or midfielders being able to get the ball inside 50.  I know we disagree on this, but I still think clearances, and by extension inside 50s are paramount in this way.  A tall forward line up able to split contests, and small forwards capable of driving high numbers of 2, and 4.  Either through locking the ball in, or getting groundball get like goals. 

Alternative to this is to create separation and hit leading forwards and rely on goal-kicking accuracy.  This appears to be Tom McDonald and Ben Browns M.O - but does rely on higher skill and nullifies your small forwards potency to an extent. 

While much of your post is common sense let's not complicate the game too much. Goals are scored in many ways and Teams have to be aware of all opportunities to create scores and not to me too one dimensional. We are starting to get some forward grunt through talls and smalls and reaping the rewards on the scoreboard is still to be fully claimed.

Dees are a work in progress as we are hell bent on 2018 again  with a more mature list. Only time will tell how far we progress but the signs are good so far.

Go Dees we are all behind you. 

 

 

 

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Enjoying the clear change in game style in the first 2 games. A lot more measured kicking in attack rather than the usual long bombs, and some fantastic setup behind the ball with the Great Wall being setup with May, Lever, Tomlinson and Gawn. It gives us different ways to win games rather than having to rely on huge clearance and inside 50 differentials in our favour. Hopefully it continues.

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6 hours ago, binman said:

In 2020, particularly the second half of the season, we moved away from being a stoppage and clearance based team first and foremost to a team :

  • that has shifted the dial to trying to win pure clearances that result in scoring opportunities - even though in doing so we 'lose' more clearances than we have historically done
  • when we 'lose' clearances we put the ball carrier under pressure, force a poor kick or handball and look to create a  turnover from HB that we can counter attack from and set up scoring chains
  • that is now all about intercept marks (Cameron will  now be sweating on how to prevent  Lever and May having field day)

This tactical shift has been really evident this year.

I don't see how wanting to score from clearances means you win less clearances. Could you explain your thinking there.

Here's some very interesting clearance stat's from the Saints game which support your theory about putting the ball carrier under pressure when we lose clearances.

- We won the centre bounce clearances 14 to 11.  Not that great a difference. But look at i50's and metres gained from centre bounces. The stats are to say the least a revelation.  Saints 11 centre clearances = 3 i50's compared to 11 out of 14 of ours. Even more dramatically metres gained from centre bounces was 821 for us and incredibly only 195 to them. Hard to believe. Clearly there's some fantastic defensive work being done at these stoppages which I for one wasn't aware of watching it. I'd love to know how this stacks up against the rest of the comp. 

6 hours ago, binman said:

My gut feeling is that the increase in pace on the game, which is the driver of open forward lines because the ball gets in there quick, is less a function of the rule changes, more a function of the psychology of the players.

I think in our case there are a lot of factors causing our forward line to be more open.

- We have a better structure with some defenders remaining deep and not all getting sucked up the ground. So on transition we have better shape to stop being easily opened up.

- The dominance of May, Lever, Tomlinson, Salem  has meant our defenders can run straight down the corridor to get back deep and can afford to concede more possession on the wings because by the time they are ready to deliver i50 we are back there. You could see the Saints having to stop in their tracks because they had no where to deliver the ball i50

- The new rules allow half backs to take off and get much more penetration. For instance Salem off half back had the 3rd most i50's in the team with 5 only Trac with 7 & Oliver with 6 had more. This fits in with pre season predictions that the man on the mark rule would mean half back flankers would get record amounts of possession.  

- I believe the dominance of the backline is creating a predictability to our ball movement so more players are creating options up the field. This is allowing our ball movement to be more deliberate causing us to retain possession and control rather than bombing long all the time. Dare I say this is looking more Clarkson/Hawthorn like. Thank you Yze. 

- All of the above ultimately contributes to better delivery i50 although lets face it there's still a lot of work to be done there. But the signs are good. It should be cherry ripe particularly for a leading forward like BB. 

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The other thing I should add is that I think one of the keys to all of this strangely enough is Tomlinson. He is becoming a very good key defender which is freeing up Lever to do what he was recruited to do as the intercepting floating back and also releasing May to attack out of deep defence. They can do this because they know Tomlinson can cover their man if they leave. He has strength and agility and speed. Lever isn't the same player when forced to be a lock down key defender as we saw last season. Because of that May was also more restricted from attacking out of defensive 50. 

So in combination all of the above two posts results in better ball movement i50 before the oppo can flood back and choke the forward 50.  Problem is there was a lot of bombing still going on often to an outnumbered T Mac. The amount of balls dropped on or behind his head instead of out in front was a killer. I'm still waiting for them to deliver low direct sharp passes to leads like the Saints did. 

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Some interesting discussion about stoppages, which has been a theme since we were dominant here in 2018. A few interesting things from the weekend:

This is a typical stoppage from the weekend.

image.thumb.png.683b1375457559de175c1a143580fbbc.png

Notice that we are playing one short in here, with the extra player being Sinclair on the far right. His counter, Salem, is sitting 30 metres defensive side of the contest (left of screen). We lose this clearance, but the the ball is just dumped straight to Salem who launches a counterattack. 

We leveled the clearances on the weekend but that only tells part of the story. We are committing our resources away from the stoppages because we've got such talent in there. We are diverting it from stoppages and into a structure behind the ball, minimising the danger of any lost clearances. Effectively we are saying that one of our lost clearances is kicking to a defensive outnumber for us, but any won clearance goes forward to an even contest for us. 

This is what a gameplan that maximises our strengths looks like. We've been talking about our gun inside players cannibalising each other's possessions and clearances, but this game plan actually maximises the value we get from two of the best contested ball winners in the league (Oliver and Viney), even if they'll actually have fewer clearances because of it, and also having Max. 

The plan is in several parts:
1- We go into a stoppage with a numerical disadvantage but superior behind the stoppage.
2- Max can direct the ball away from the spare players in the stoppage and to where we have 50/50 numbers, so that the impact of the opposition extra numbers in the stoppage is lessened.
3- Oliver/Viney/Trac can win a lot of these clearances now and get it forward to 50/50 contests. But if the extra numbers win out, we have defensive cover.

Max is a big part of this because, whilst getting a clean tap to advantage is really hard, having a big dominant ruck advantage means that we can direct the area of the stoppage that the clearance battle will take place in (ie, where we have even numbers). For instance, in the above stoppage, Max directed the ball front left, which gave Oliver, Petracca and Langdon a fair go at it before the extra opposition numbers can arrive.

The end result of this is that we play a pretty distinctive style of game. We're in the middle of the pack league wide for most statistics but we are currently first in intercepts (quite comfortably) and first in intercept differential (by an absolute mile). Check out the intercept differential below:

image.thumb.png.34656f4112a2e9412e304e84365d662f.png

So we intercept the ball 11.5 times more than our opponents every game. If we can stay in the ballpark with clearances then we're getting a massive advantage. 

Often the biggest strengths of a team are used counter-intuitively because that's where you get the most incremental value. I think about it in terms of the late 2000s premiership teams, Sydney, West Coast, Geelong and Hawthorn. Sydney and Hawthorn both had their strengths in their forward line. Barry Hall, Micky O, Goodes .... Buddy, Roughy. Both those teams played defensive game styles, with Sydney crowding stoppages and Hawthorn employing a very aggressive defensive zone to cover their defensive weakness (Croad and Brichall, then later threw Hodge in as cover, whilst Sydney had Bolton and Barry, who were both undersized). Conversely, Geelong and West Coast had very strong defences (Scarlett, Enright, Mackie, Milburn, Harley etc, and Glass, Wirrpanda, Banfield, Waters) but comparatively weak forward lines (Mooney and N Ablett as keys, and Hansen and Hunter as keys), so they played very aggressive, creative and expansive game styles so make it easier for their less talented forward to score (although they still had Stevie J!).

You can solve your weaknesses with numbers but you can back your best players to win contests if given a sniff. Like Richmond does with Riewoldt, Lynch and Dusty up forward, who have to fight against extra numbers but they'll win enough of them to kick you a score, whilst they throw extra number behind the ball to cover their less talented defenders. 

Unlike previous years, we aren't doubling down on our big midfielders to smash the opposition in clearances every week, we are backing in their ability to win difficult contests and committing our numbers outside the contests where we are weaker. Our mids must be respected, but our ability to commit numbers outside is making it easier for us to defend but also making it easier for our less formidable forwards to kick goals. 

We evened the clearances last week, which is a great effort when we go into each stoppage outnumbered. If we split the clearances with the opposition this year then that will be a massive win for us.

I'm very happy with how our game style has looked over the first two weeks. 

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1 hour ago, It's Time said:

So in combination all of the above two posts results in better ball movement i50 before the oppo can flood back and choke the forward 50.  Problem is there was a lot of bombing still going on often to an outnumbered T Mac. The amount of balls dropped on or behind his head instead of out in front was a killer. I'm still waiting for them to deliver low direct sharp passes to leads like the Saints did

I think with us structuring up strongly behind the ball we'll just have to live with the contest. Our end to end transition has been much better and there's a clearer effort to create space even with an out number. Back in 2018 we did this really well. Our best footy came from behind

In the above clips we get 2 goals in transition despite an outnumber. One is Jones' where we get out the back with a 5 on 4 in our 50. But even better is the TMac pass to Fristch which is a 5 on 3. This more controlled confident ball movement means we have a high chance of scoring in our first i50 attempt. Then If we don't score from there we can try to lock it in and start to bomb. That's the hard way, but do that enough times and the defence will eventually crack. Or like Saturday we'll kick 19 behinds....

The club talks about method all the time, the execution on Saturday was so-so but the method was much improved. The last couple of years the method with which we moved the ball was so poor that we had no choice but to either hit a pin point near impossible kick or to bomb. Which meant we wound up doing it the hard way straight up every time we went forward. Keeping in mind we still won more than we lost last year, we only need to be a few goals a game better team to push up the ladder. 

Good footy comes with confidence, confidence comes from winning and winning comes from method. We've seen 2 wins with good method. Keep that up and the confidence will come and then we'll see more of the good clean footy you want.

Edited by ArtificialWisdom
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Great last few posts!

Have noticed something that we are doing quite differently this year so far.

Maybe the new rules have something to do with it but there seems to be a concerted effort to take tacklers on, then get it through the contest to someone who is free.  In previous years we see the tackle coming and generally a panic disposal ensued which resulted in a turnover or quite often at best another stoppage.

We are playing to our strengths of backing in contested ball winners to take more accountability, and draw the tackle or break it.  

Just a small part of our game that really stood out to me. Will continue to watch us with interest as we continue to evolve and add layers to what seems a much more balanced overall game plan.

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