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Our interesting mix of talls for 2023



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Thank you so much to the track watches that have given us great insight into how we are tracking in the preseason (training the house down!)

Found it interesting to hear TMac spent much of the match sim in defence.  Is he likely to be a permanent fixture there?  Will he be the swingman?  Could he play in the same backline as Petty, Lever, May (replacing someone like Hibberd if the injuries do catch up with him)?

At the end of last year I thought they needed to go with TMac / Turner back and shift Petty forward as he has the style of play and body to play the big crash power forward role in a way that all our other options can't.  JVR is showing great signs but he is yet to play a senior game!

I know Goody loved having TMac in the team early in 2022 as he was able to be shifted to defence if anyone went down.  It meant that if someone like Chandler was the sub, it didn't hurt us if a key defender went down as we could play a smaller forwardline.  Obviously having Grundy in the side (and how they use him and Max) may further influence how this works.

If I were picking the side I would think it would work something like:
Key defenders: May, Lever, Petty**        (with Turner, Smith as backup)
Key Forwards: TMac**, JVR, Fritsch, ruckman*        (with BBB and Schache as backup)

* I hope the resting ruckman actually plays in the ruck and the ruckman plays loose across half back.  I just can't see us looking dangerous with Grundy / Gawn resting forward unless the ball movement is improved x1000 from last year.

** I would like to see Petty and TMac swap positions from time to time.  I think the best teams and best coaches have flexibility built into the lineup so that opposition weaknesses can be exploited and you can have plan B scenarios without throwing out the game plan.

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1 hour ago, deelusions from afar said:

** I would like to see Petty and TMac swap positions from time to time.  I think the best teams and best coaches have flexibility built into the lineup so that opposition weaknesses can be exploited and you can have plan B scenarios without throwing out the game plan.

Me too.

T Mac always plays a solid game down back, even the round 1 game last year where he was summonsed into defence after Salem went down.

And we all saw what Petty was capable of in a cameo appearance in the Brisbane final. Petty will be one of the best contested markers in league footy so I'd like to see him play some minutes in the forward line this year.

Thought our defence was stale, tired, injured, uncharacteristic (May and Lever arguing with each other) and out of sorts come finals last year. As you stated above, some flexibility might be in order next year. 

Edited by Bring-Back-Powell
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The reports of Ben Brown running well hopefully means his knee has improved a lot, will be interesting to see how he fits into this also

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From what I understand, Brown’s knee problem is not going to go away. It’s something he has to manage on an ongoing basis.

id be happy if BB can play 1/2 to 2/3 of the regular season, with the view to having his knee well rested and cherry ripe for finals.

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34 minutes ago, Demon Disciple said:

From what I understand, Brown’s knee problem is not going to go away. It’s something he has to manage on an ongoing basis.

If BBB has another poor year from a form and injury perspective, then I reckon he'll retire and forgo his final year. 

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Agree @adonski and @MrFreeze - BBB arguably should be first picked of the forwards - given his extra height, reliability for set shots and experience.  My main concern is how we use the spare ruckman.  If Gawn (and to a lesser extent Grundy) spend time forward, then I think BBB becomes a liability once the ball hits the ground.  

We got burnt a lot in the second half of last year with Gawn and BBB in the same forward-line (admittedly both were prob not 100%) and the opposition running the ball out with ease.  I wouldn't say Tmac is necessarily suited to this situation either.  Fortunately this seems to be an area strength in JVR's game but he is a kid.  I felt like BBB was also asked to play a type of role that he isn't suited to (one out and force a contest rather than on the lead) - will his role have changed for 2023?

There is definitely room for BBB in my book - but only with the right mix.  

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1 hour ago, adonski said:

If Brown Brown is fully fit (if such a possibility still exists), I would select him over T Mac

No Tmac is more versatile and contributes so that the smalls can crumb better. 

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2 hours ago, Bring-Back-Powell said:

If BBB has another poor year from a form and injury perspective, then I reckon he'll retire and forgo his final year. 

He will leave $500k on the table? When we are at the top of the ladder? 

Wouldn’t bet on it even if he is crocked in 2023.

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The tall additions we have gained over this off season will make for some interesting selections going into the early rounds. 

In defence, I would look at maintaining Petty as a key defender working with May and Lever. he is just so very good at what he does back there and I can see him as the next generational link in the defence as the older players lose a yard or pick up age related injuries. I would not move him forward unless we had run out of alternatives. 

As for tall forwards, to my mind the election will depend on late per-season form that are in the mix. Brown, Tmac, JVR, Schache could all step up and make it hard for them not to be selected early on. 

Wit regard to rucks, how and where they are played will depend a bit on how our forward structure is working. If Tmac is in the forwards then he could shoulder the ruck work in the forward 50. They may even give JVR a bit of work there a la Jackson. Compete and then back it up with some mobile agile ground work. i think Jackson has opened the door for more young talls to try to emulate him in that way.

I get the feeling that Goodwin will want to settle the team from R1 and will go with Brown, Tmac and Fritsch with JVR on the bench. the usual suspects running at their feet and applying pressure.

Will be very interesting to watch the early part of the season unfold.

 

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42 minutes ago, rpfc said:

He will leave $500k on the table? When we are at the top of the ladder? 

Wouldn’t bet on it even if he is crocked in 2023.

Seems like an outstanding fella that would put the club before himself if his knee can’t withstand another year.

With that being said, we’ll be a far better side next year if we get the late 2021 Ben Brown edition, so here’s hoping.

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3 hours ago, CHF said:

The tall additions we have gained over this off season will make for some interesting selections going into the early rounds. 

In defence, I would look at maintaining Petty as a key defender working with May and Lever. he is just so very good at what he does back there and I can see him as the next generational link in the defence as the older players lose a yard or pick up age related injuries. I would not move him forward unless we had run out of alternatives. 

As for tall forwards, to my mind the election will depend on late per-season form that are in the mix. Brown, Tmac, JVR, Schache could all step up and make it hard for them not to be selected early on. 

Wit regard to rucks, how and where they are played will depend a bit on how our forward structure is working. If Tmac is in the forwards then he could shoulder the ruck work in the forward 50. They may even give JVR a bit of work there a la Jackson. Compete and then back it up with some mobile agile ground work. i think Jackson has opened the door for more young talls to try to emulate him in that way.

I get the feeling that Goodwin will want to settle the team from R1 and will go with Brown, Tmac and Fritsch with JVR on the bench. the usual suspects running at their feet and applying pressure.

Will be very interesting to watch the early part of the season unfold.

 

It is still a very long time until round 1 - or even the practice match / Ansett Cup / Wizard Cup / whatever the latest name for preseason..

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“Interesting” mix of talls is a good way of putting it. We have no star talls. Ben Brown has averaged 26 goals when we thought he might be able to re-create his 60 goals years. Injuries have hampered him. T Mac as much as I love him is so up and down with his body and form we just have to pray for a good run for him. 

our best hope is for our young guys to make an impact. But right now, our lack of quality tall forwards is our biggest issue imo 

if we had a gun tall fwd like Lynch or Cameron we would be unstoppable imo 

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4 hours ago, DubDee said:

“Interesting” mix of talls is a good way of putting it. We have no star talls. Ben Brown has averaged 26 goals when we thought he might be able to re-create his 60 goals years. Injuries have hampered him. T Mac as much as I love him is so up and down with his body and form we just have to pray for a good run for him. 

our best hope is for our young guys to make an impact. But right now, our lack of quality tall forwards is our biggest issue imo 

if we had a gun tall fwd like Lynch or Cameron we would be unstoppable imo 

I must admit that I am surprised and disappointed that some of the above  posters have not shown enough faith in Tmac for his role in this coming season. 

Most Demon fans I believe are convinced that the loss of Tommy from Round 11 contributed majorly to our second half inconsistency especially on the forward line. The game plan also IMO and BBB 's injury also were reasons plus our slow ball movement into attack. 
Further to that was the fact that both Spargo and ANB did  not replicate their stellar 2021 seasons and about 20 goals were missing from them. 

Also Trac kicked 10.26 or similar I think  and was also 15/20 goals shy of his 2021 output. Along with tjis was the selection Cttee and Simon not giving Chandler Bedford a decent run and possibly even Bowey Laurie or Howes through form or injury not being tried on the forward line. 

We know that JVR was also not tried but was close to selection from about around 20 as he was named an emergency for the last 6 games.

Fast forward to 2023 and all except Bedford are now available for consideration with Grundy Schache and maybe  later ( or earlier) depending upon form and development in Jefferson ( lightly framed but has very good goal kicking craft) and Sestan ( appears to have excellent kicking skills and robust physique to be competitive) but his endurance and fitness may be a query especially in the early rounds.

How do we come up with the right mix of forwards inc. talls mids and smalls.?

If all are fit and available I would line up in Round1 as:

HF    Chandler   Tmac   Fritsch

FF     Pickett  Brown  Van Rooyen

Either Spargo OR ANB would be in the 5 Interchange selections.

Others to run through or rest or change in the Forward line during the game could be:

Gawn Grundy Petty Petracca Harmes Hunter Schache ( if in 23) Jordan ( if in 23) Sestan (when fit enough and if in form) late in year Verrall or Jefferson May be developed enough or even Kossies mate Trent might be a chance if he joins as a SSP selection.

So we have plenty of choices but firm and fitness plus game plan and connectivity are all important issues yo consider. 

I reckon we all consider that Fritta and Kossie will both continue their 55+ and 40+ goals contributions. 

I also  happen to believe if Tmac plays then another 25/30 goals plus will be added to the mix!! 

We await with baited breath what   Stafford the Coach can do with this eclectic group of goalkickers and forwards in our quest for our 14th Flag.

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10 hours ago, Bring-Back-Powell said:

Seems like an outstanding fella that would put the club before himself if his knee can’t withstand another year.

With that being said, we’ll be a far better side next year if we get the late 2021 Ben Brown edition, so here’s hoping.

He does seem a great bloke. And I hold out hope he gets back to form - he is literally the best tall fwd we have right now.

But can we not live in a fantasy land that expects good people to walk away from a contract for the ‘good of the club?’

I find it naive and mean spirited. 

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11 hours ago, Bring-Back-Powell said:

Seems like an outstanding fella that would put the club before himself if his knee can’t withstand another year.

With that being said, we’ll be a far better side next year if we get the late 2021 Ben Brown edition, so here’s hoping.

Would be handy also if we had a game plan that would actually play to him and the rest of the forwards strengths...

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18 hours ago, deelusions from afar said:

Thank you so much to the track watches that have given us great insight into how we are tracking in the preseason (training the house down!)

Found it interesting to hear TMac spent much of the match sim in defence.  Is he likely to be a permanent fixture there?  Will he be the swingman?  Could he play in the same backline as Petty, Lever, May (replacing someone like Hibberd if the injuries do catch up with him)?

At the end of last year I thought they needed to go with TMac / Turner back and shift Petty forward as he has the style of play and body to play the big crash power forward role in a way that all our other options can't.  JVR is showing great signs but he is yet to play a senior game!

I know Goody loved having TMac in the team early in 2022 as he was able to be shifted to defence if anyone went down.  It meant that if someone like Chandler was the sub, it didn't hurt us if a key defender went down as we could play a smaller forwardline.  Obviously having Grundy in the side (and how they use him and Max) may further influence how this works.

If I were picking the side I would think it would work something like:
Key defenders: May, Lever, Petty**        (with Turner, Smith as backup)
Key Forwards: TMac**, JVR, Fritsch, ruckman*        (with BBB and Schache as backup)

* I hope the resting ruckman actually plays in the ruck and the ruckman plays loose across half back.  I just can't see us looking dangerous with Grundy / Gawn resting forward unless the ball movement is improved x1000 from last year.

** I would like to see Petty and TMac swap positions from time to time.  I think the best teams and best coaches have flexibility built into the lineup so that opposition weaknesses can be exploited and you can have plan B scenarios without throwing out the game plan.

Flexibility would be something new for MFC version 2022.

Apart from injuries it was  lack of FD flexibility that made the 2021 Premiers so " gettable"

Edited by IRW
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The only locks of our key position players will be May, Lever and Petty (either in defence or attack).

I think our forward line will depend on how we use Gawn and Grundy. I think one of the rucks will need to play 60% game time as a deep forward. Neither is mobile enough to play as a midfielder and any other solution will mess up the rotations.

I hope Petty is given more than 5 minutes of the season up forward to see what he can do. He could be our Tom Lynch.

Disco Turner and Van Rooyen look likely but it is a big jump from VFL to AFL. I think both have a good chance this year and how they fair will impact which end Petty plays.

TMac and Brown are near the end of their careers. I think TMac has more top level footy in him because he is more mobile and fits better alongside Gawn or Grundy at full forward.

Casey will be very strong if we have no injuries.

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5 hours ago, 58er said:

If all are fit and available I would line up in Round1 as:

HF    Chandler   Tmac   Fritsch

FF     Pickett  Brown  Van Rooyen

Either Spargo OR ANB would be in the 5 Interchange selections.

Agree with a lot of what you've written.  All comes down to what the resting ruck does - but if they're spending time forward, I can't see us playing TMac, Brown, Van Rooyen and Fritsch in the one side.  It's too top heavy in the forward half even with rotations

And while I'm a big fan of Chandler and really want him to get a decent crack at AFL level, I don't know if it will be at the expense of ANB or Spargo.  Although they are sometimes the whipping boys of the team on here, both have unique strengths that are vital to the team.  ANB with his running capacity (allowing the likes of Trac to play more attacking) and Spargo with his footskills and (sadly for us) rare ability to hit targets inside F50.  Chandler has strengths of his own but unless other players (eg Hunter?) can make up for the strengths of Spargo / ANB I think they'll still be in the team.

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4 hours ago, rpfc said:

He does seem a great bloke. And I hold out hope he gets back to form - he is literally the best tall fwd we have right now.

But can we not live in a fantasy land that expects good people to walk away from a contract for the ‘good of the club?’

I find it naive and mean spirited. 

Apart from anything else, we don't know the details of his contract. He might have agreed to do something for the "good of the club" when he originally signed on, such as back-ending his contract. Conversely, there might be an agreement for him to transition into a formal coaching role whenever he retires to enable him to maintain the equivalent income. 

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I'm reading Max Gawn's Captain's Diary book again and he brings up an observation from Daisy Pearce about the impact of BBB (stats from the middle of the 2021 finals).

At that point in time, BBB had played 12 games and Kozzy and Spargs had both played 24 games.  Their output in the 12 games where BBB was there was a combined 35 goals, and the output without BBB was a combined 22 goals.  Pretty significant impact!

Of course, TMac was present in those games as opposed to our 2022 season, in which Ben's role changed and the extra physicality without TMac cooked Ben's knees...

It'll be interesting to see how BBB goes this season, with the greater diversity of talls.

Edited by DeelightfulPlay
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18 hours ago, Bring-Back-Powell said:

If BBB has another poor year from a form and injury perspective, then I reckon he'll retire and forgo his final year. 

Would you?

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If 4 umps does eventuate this should help Brown immensely.

There will be an ump at each end making it easier to see backs hitting ,pushing out and holding the FF 's.

Then again we are talking about MFC.  No free's but plenty to Hawkins at the cattery.

 

Edited by Deebauched
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5 hours ago, rpfc said:

He does seem a great bloke. And I hold out hope he gets back to form - he is literally the best tall fwd we have right now.

But can we not live in a fantasy land that expects good people to walk away from a contract for the ‘good of the club?’

I find it naive and mean spirited. 

I could not agree more rpfc. 

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19 hours ago, Demon Disciple said:

From what I understand, Brown’s knee problem is not going to go away. It’s something he has to manage on an ongoing basis.

id be happy if BB can play 1/2 to 2/3 of the regular season, with the view to having his knee well rested and cherry ripe for finals.

That's possibly what he and the club are looking at.

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