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Is our offense a problem?


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11 minutes ago, Little Goffy said:

 

It's another reason I like the thought of keeping Serious Sam out there even when Gawn & Jackson are in, so that between them they\ stars can spend more time up forward being a tall target while Weideman takes some shin-beatings in the ruck.

I agree with this. It won't be popular but its the best set up for us having two tall targets up forward with Gawn and Jackson spending periods of time rotating through there as well. Its how we set up when Tmac was healthy and I think we should keep this structure to see how it holds up the next few weeks. Petracca was great up forward on the weekend but we can't afford to have him spend more time in the forward line when we're up against the comps best midfields.

Mitch Brown is great as a lead up forward but he's really more like a taller Fritsch with the way he plays. Weid's game (especially first half) was cringe-worthy last week with the way he dropped marks that were all his. But I think persist with him, just have him play aggressive and bring the ball to ground for our smalls, make their tall backs accountable.

 

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I don't think we're any more wasteful than other teams, but going to the pocket most of the time is definitely a factor in our scorelines. 

3 hours ago, daisycutter said:

i'd hate to lose a gf with significant more shots on goal than the opposition

We kicked a pretty wasteful 9.15 in the '48 drawn Grand Final. Essendon kicked 7.27 !!

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Its a concern that could be easily fixed with a just few more goals a week from the key forwards for mine. Sure we've been a bit inaccurate lately but this can change quickly. I'm more concerned about generating the scoring shots, keep doing that and I'm confident goals will come. 

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1 hour ago, Little Goffy said:

Remarkably, last year when we started the season missing a number of forwards and were all anxious about even getting off to a respectable start that would keep us in the running for finals, we averaged more than 90 points a game for the first half of the season.

From Round 13 to 19 (incl.) we had a serious drop off to only about 70 points per game and this was of course when we lost three games and drew against Hawthorn.

Then, of course, it all clicked and we thumped our way to glory, averaging 107 points per game and pushing even higher in finals - just shy of 120.

Meanwhile, in all three losses this season we failed to break double-figure goals, despite this season overall being higher scoring for us.

I think the problem is that when our whole-ground domination and harassment falters or when our opponents have the steadiness to cope with it, we are missing a bit of ability to get a goal against the flow here and there, courtesy of a forward who can just make it happen even when the system isn't going smoothly.

We are in the absolute top group for inside-50s, but other teams around us are turning that into one goal a game (Bulldogs, Cats) or even two goals a game (Tigers, Lions) more than us, and the common factor in all these teams is that they have at least one forward who, sometimes, it doesn't even matter how good the kick coming in is.

The story is told that our top 4 contested marks players are not forwards; Gawn (3rd overall), then Petty (37th) May (47th) and Jackson (54th). It is Sam Weideman who leads or forward line contested marking.

It's another reason I like the thought of keeping Serious Sam out there even when Gawn & Jackson are in, so that between them they\ stars can spend more time up forward being a tall target while Weideman takes some shin-beatings in the ruck.

Agree with what you are saying, but just don’t think it’s a problem. 

We win games from the manic pressure, and defensive dominance etc up the ground. While it is tough to bring this every week, and may result in 1,2 or even 3 more losses for the remainder of home and away season:- Our strategy is backing in that we will bring this manic pressure, and defensive dominance for every final, and hence why scoring and the forward line won’t be an issue for the games that matter most. 
 

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When your back line is so strong as is our midfield our forward line to the naked eye is our weakest line. While I have every confidence in it I would like to see us tidy up our leading patterns. When at our worst we are all up and nobody down, or run to the same space. While a great kick for goal Bailey quite often leads to the wrong pocket for a left foot kick at goal.  I do like the balance we have in the team now with the extra small in Bedford, he just needs some continuity. We will peak in time for finals again.

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My one word answer to this thread is ‘no’.

We don’t need to kick massive scores. To state the obvious, we need to kick 1 more point than our opposition and that is all. Despite that, people may not have noticed it but our percentage is 139.6% We have managed this without any 100 point drubbings against easy beats. We have just racked up decent victories against most teams we have played. Part of why our forward line looks disfunctional sometimes is due to our territory game. This is actually code for take ground however you can, one way of taking territory is to kick long to a contest and ensure we either mark or bring it to ground. This can look ugly but as long as we don’t concede an intercept mark it is a very effective way of moving the contest up into our forward half.

We have struggled more to get space in our forward line this year as oppositions have regularly flooded in order to try and choke off our ability to score. This plays into our hands though as although it makes it hard for us to get a clean entry, it leaves our defensive press in a terrific position to intercept anything exiting our forward 50. This gives us repeat entries and gives our back 6 a decent rest.

I do think we would look a goal or two better if we had a monster forward to break packs and take big pack marks but the down side is that leaves us with one less person to get to work applying pressure when the ball hits the deck. If we could add some contested marking power from a person who could also tackle and chase that would be the holy grail for us.

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IMO our forward half work can be better. 

When we click in the forward half we’re unstoppable - see, eg, the Brisbane game, or the finals last year. 

But too often we are out-marked, take the wrong option going inside, or miss a shot on goal we should kick. When those happen, we leave the door open for opponents.

The stats look good this year compared to last year but we’ve had a comparatively easier fixture, with fewer games against good sides to this point than last year. 

We’re a much stronger side than some of the lazy pundits in the media suggest, but we can do better IMO. 

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2 hours ago, titan_uranus said:

 

We’re a much stronger side than some of the lazy pundits in the media suggest, but we can do better IMO. 

Absolutely. The way the media portray our forward line is just wrong 

But who cares. We are on top with a% of 139 and at least 10% possible improvement 

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21 hours ago, Doggas front teeth said:

Our forward line performance is dependent on our pressure further up the ground more so than forward line personnel IMO. You could see vs Brisbane that when the defence and midfield is humming, the forward line takes care of itself. I think the forward line issues are an easy target for media pundits, but I reckon it will straighten out as our training loads drop and the boys bring more and more pressure on game day. Not an issue for mine.

The first part (regarding our pressure up the ground) x 1,000,000. It's a pretty simple game really.

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It's not an issue as long as you recognise that there will be times we keep the opposition to a respectable score and still lose. See for example Sydney this year, GWS last year, or the last two Queen's Birthdays before the last minute junktime goals. It's a seat of the pants method but works more often than not.

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22 hours ago, binman said:

Well you'd expect to see that supposed gap between the two forward lines reflected in the scoring shot/inside 50 ratio.

Yeah, nah.

The AFL average for that measure is 43.4%

Carlton, with the forward line to die for apparently, is 9th in the AFL, scoring 43.5% of the time when entering their 50.

The dees, with the supposedly dysfunctional forward line, is 8th in the AFL at 43.6%

If you use the shots at goal measure instead, the gap between us and the blues is even greater.

The blues have a shot at goal 46.8% of times they enter their 50 (below the afl average of 47.3 and 12th on that table). 

The dees have a shot at goal 47.7% of times they enter their 50 (10th and above the AFL average).

The blues goals to inside 50 is below the AFL average (23), but better than ours, albeit not by a huge margin (22.8 to 21.9) - and the gap is probably explained by our method (ie so many kicks to the pocket).

The dees might have 99 problems (96 of which are related to Bartlett) - but the forward line ain't one.

I think the cats have been smart how they use Cameron to avoid the issue Carlton and the Dogs (and arguably also the lions) face. And Hawkins has slimmed down and gets up the ground more than he did.

It's no coincidence they top the inside 50 scoring ratio table, scoring 46% of the time they go inside 50.

Stats from this excellent site: https://www.wheeloratings.com/afl_stats_team.html

 

Thanks for the link to wheeloratings. Great site. 

I guess stats are only as useful as their interpretation. I take your point about the perception around Carlton's key forwards but personally I wouldn't be choosing Carlton as a benchmark, I'm more interested in the more likely challengers Cats, Lions and Freo.

I don't understand why the focus isn't on goals scored per i50 rather than scores which includes points. You win games by scoring goals not points.  On goals per i50 we sit 14th, only better than GC, Port, Ess & NM.  Lions are 1st, Cats 7th, Blues 9th, Dockers 10th. 

On your point about us having a better forward structure because we have a range of goal scorers. So far this season the Blues are 18th with 21 but we are only 17th with 22. Freo are 3rd with 28, Cats and Lions equal 5th with 27. And we've had a turnover in forwards already this season which adds to the number of scorers. 

It's pretty obvious to me that in comparison to our mids and backs our forwards are not at the same level and clearly need work. Goody has said that himself in relation to the forwards and the connection from the midfield. 

 

 

 

 

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25 minutes ago, Its Time for Back to Back said:

 

I don't understand why the focus isn't on goals scored per i50 rather than scores which includes points. You win games by scoring goals not points.  On goals per i50 we sit 14th, only better than GC, Port, Ess & NM.  Lions are 1st, Cats 7th, Blues 9th, Dockers 10th.

 

One answer to that question,  as it relates to the dees is, that our kpi is the number of entries, not goals per entry.

We are all about getting it inside 50, if we don't score  trap it inside 50 and if the opposition do get it out, setting up a wall so it bounces straight back in  (often of course into a relatively small area that might have as many as 30-36 players crowded into it).

Chaos ball.

By definition, this method  will result in a lower goal to inside 50 ratio, then say the lions who are less about territory, and more about maximising the goal to inside 50 ratio. And as we know it also means lots of points.

On the  goal to inside 50 ratio, the lions are number one in the AFL. Super efficient. It is a method that works really well against most teams. But not us, or freo for that matter, because against us they simply don't get enough inside 50s.

The last three times they have played us they have been pretty efficient in terms of goals to inside 50 ratio. But they haven’t got within a bulls roar of us because they have not gone inside 50 enough, and the dees, whilst not as efficient, have smashed them in inside 50 differential. 

Without wanting to sound smart, the goal is to kick more goals than the opposition and our method has proven to be brutally effective, as demonstrated by our crazy good win loss ratio since round one 2021.

I just think the whole debate around the forward line's effectiveness, a debate thst also raged most of last season, feels like a solution searching for a problem - as evidenced by or win loss ratio and percentage this year.

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3 minutes ago, binman said:

One answer to that question,  as it relates to the dees is, that our kpi is the number of entries, not goals per entry.

We are all about getting it inside 50, if we don't score  trap it inside 50 and if the opposition do get it out, setting up a wall so it bounces straight back in  (often of course into a relatively small area that might have as many as 30-36 players crowded into it).

Chaos ball.

By definition, this method  will result in a lower goal to inside 50 ratio, then say the lions who are less about territory, and more about maximising the goal to inside 50 ratio.

On that measure, the lions are number one in the AFL. Super efficient. It is a method that works really well against most teams. But not us, or freo for that matter, because against us they simply don't get enough inside 50s.

The last three times they have played us they have been pretty efficient in terms of goals to inside 50 ratio. But they haven’t got within a bulls roar of us because they have not gone inside 50 enough, and the dees, whilst not as efficient, have smashed them in inside 50 differential. 

Without wanting to sound smart, the goal is to kick more goals than the opposition and our method has proven to be brutally effective, as demonstrated by our crazy good win loss ratio since round one 2021.

I just think the whole debate around the forward line's effectiveness, a debate thst also raged most of last season, feels like a solution searching for a problem - as evidenced by or win loss ratio and percentage this year.

I get where you're coming from in all of this except your last comment. Even Goody acknowledges it has to get better. I don't agree with the philosophy that we're winning so ignore that the forward line isn't working as well as it should. I hope they are continuing to work on it and bring it up to the level of the mids and backs. That will make us virtually unbeatable. 

It has been a bug bear of mine for many years, however I have to confess that watching the Lions game was the very first time I've ever really thought that there the madness of our, as you call it, kaos i50 method might actually have a point. In that game we only had 3 set shots on goal but the Lions were chasing us all night because the kaos made us absolutely unpredictable, including to ourselves I might suggest. The result was they just couldn't defend against us. I could see for the first time that in a really tight GF against an elite backline our kaos could possibly stand up more than a forward line depending on clean leads and passes which if chopped down leave you exposed. 

The other thing I have to acknowledge is that despite being well down the ladder on a lot of these scoring structures we are 6th for points scored. Unfortunately 4 of the teams above us are in the 8 including Cats, Lions Tigers and Swans. Freo are behind by 112pts. It's worth noting that the Cats have already played Nth twice for 60pt and 112pt wins so their pts tally is skewered somewhat. 

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4 minutes ago, Its Time for Back to Back said:

I get where you're coming from in all of this except your last comment. Even Goody acknowledges it has to get better. I don't agree with the philosophy that we're winning so ignore that the forward line isn't working as well as it should. I hope they are continuing to work on it and bring it up to the level of the mids and backs. That will make us virtually unbeatable. 

It has been a bug bear of mine for many years, however I have to confess that watching the Lions game was the very first time I've ever really thought that there the madness of our, as you call it, kaos i50 method might actually have a point. In that game we only had 3 set shots on goal but the Lions were chasing us all night because the kaos made us absolutely unpredictable, including to ourselves I might suggest. The result was they just couldn't defend against us. I could see for the first time that in a really tight GF against an elite backline our kaos could possibly stand up more than a forward line depending on clean leads and passes which if chopped down leave you exposed. 

The other thing I have to acknowledge is that despite being well down the ladder on a lot of these scoring structures we are 6th for points scored. Unfortunately 4 of the teams above us are in the 8 including Cats, Lions Tigers and Swans. Freo are behind by 112pts. It's worth noting that the Cats have already played Nth twice for 60pt and 112pt wins so their pts tally is skewered somewhat. 

It not binary. I'm not saying we can't improve up forward. Just that that its not really a big issue. It wouldn't even be discussed if players like trac and nibbler were not such poor shots at goal. 

My big worry about the forward line is not the method, it no Tmac. 

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It’s more a midfield problem than forward line problem IMO. The kick before the kick that goes inside 50 is an issue. It’s not going to the right depth on the field, which is then leading to a [censored] kick inside 50 because it’s starting from the wrong spot and has no choice but to bomb long into the pockets instead of to a leading players towards the flanks. Whenever it goes to the flanks on a lead instead is the only time we’re marking it and getting decent shots.

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Absolutely a problem, we need McDonald & relying on BB to ruck in forward line is no good, too easily pushed off ball

we have no strong marking presence and we don’t get enough from smalls against best teams - picket and spargo not giving us much this year

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When you see the effort and endeavour that the Geelong players push forward to pressure and out-number our defenders it seems that our forwards aren’t working hard enough.

Delivery is an issue, but there’s a work rate problem as well.

 

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Yeah, it’s effing humming.

There is a pressure problem on defence that exacerbates the lack of connection up forward where we allow 66 inside 50s.

Smashed in clearances so we were always on the back foot with trying to move it forward.

This is the way we miss out on a prelim - we can’t move the ball up the ground, keep it up there, and put way too much pressure on our backline.

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Tonight's game was lost in the middle. Can't win when you're beaten soundly in clearances like we were.

But IMO we're too short forward of centre so we were too often unable to find someone to hold a bail out grab.

Probably didn't help when Gawn and Jackson didn't appear fit.

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6 minutes ago, titan_uranus said:

Tonight's game was lost in the middle. Can't win when you're beaten soundly in clearances like we were.

But IMO we're too short forward of centre so we were too often unable to find someone to hold a bail out grab.

Probably didn't help when Gawn and Jackson didn't appear fit.

They just didn’t dump it on Gawn’s head moving it forward (and of course we did) they went around him and made that skinny ground big. We assume the opposition is going to play the dumbest footy, honestly.

Either that zone stops the switch into the corridor or we can deal with a switch to other side of the ground that forces a dump kick or we are a stick of butter and the other team is a hot knife.

 

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