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Best 22 for Round 1


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2 hours ago, Slartibartfast said:

Yep, my bad. JJ ahead of Howes. 

Yeah I agree.

To be honest I don't have much of a gauge on Howes. I saw bits of him at Casey but that was after his serious leg injury which really put him on the back foot.

I'm guessing he's training as a wingman? Still think he'd be more suited to that Jack Gunstn type role up forward.

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I understand the reasons for comparing them given they are the same draft class and similar stage in their career but I don't really think Sparrow v Jordon is a direct comparison at all. At least until we see JJ given more minutes as an on baller.

For now JJ is primarily a wingman and he has to fight for that second wing role. It would surprise me if JJ is the 3rd winger because we got guys like Gus and Harmes who can fill that role whilst also providing more in forward or on ball rotations.

Sparrow is a mid/forward who does a very good job defending the corridor and whilst his ball use inside 50 isn't a strong point he showed he can impact as a forward in the 2021 finals.

There's room for both of them in the side but they are competing with Harmes, Brayshaw, Hunter and even to an extent ANB and Langdon for roles within the side far more than it being a head to head.

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It still looks to me like our forward line is going to be an issue. We will win games because our midfield and defence are so good but I want to see Petty tried forward early in the year.

The training reports on Howes and Wowoedin are encouraging but it's unlikely they will be able to force their way in. Howes needs to put on some muscle and still looks a bit slight. Wowoedin is competing against absolute A-Graders and players like Salem, Jordon, Harmes, Sparrow, Dunstan and Hunter.

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On 1/16/2023 at 11:00 AM, cantstandyasam said:

Prefer Laurie to Melksham. I think Laurie will debut this year and do a Bowey.

Melkshams mark in the final minute against 4 Carlton players was epic

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On 1/17/2023 at 1:55 PM, daisycutter said:

B:      Lever         May     [A]

HB:   Gus            Petty   Salem

C:      Langdon   Oliver  Hunter

HF:    [B]             TMac  [B] 

F:      Kozzy        [C]       Fritsch 

R:     Gawn        Trac     Viney

Int:   Grundy  [A]   [B]   [B]

Sub: [B]

[A]   Bowey  Rivers  Disco  Pig  Tommo

[B]   ANB  JJ  Sparrow Harmes  Spargo  Melks  Chandler

[C]   JVR  BBB  Schache 

15 players competing for 8 places (7 underlined as most likely)

The above highlights that we have better depth going into 2023.

Grundy as extra ruck.

Tall forwards with JVR close last year and now another pre season of improvement and Schache better back up than Weid.

Hunter coming in gives greater flexibility around usage of Brayshaw & Jordan.

Looking at backline options, it looks rock solid. Tomlinson will be much better this year, so if one of May, Lever or Petty unavailable he will provide better coverage. Smaller backs look well and truly covered with Brayshaw and JJ available if multiple unavailable.

The challenge is for two of ANB, Spargo, Sparrow, Harmes, Chandler, maybe JJ to find 10 goals more a season, so basically a goal a week combined to boost the forward line.

Our midfield, wings, ruck also need to be adding a goal or two a week, you look at the talent - Gawn, Grundy, Oliver, Petracca, Viney, Brayshaw, Hunter & Langdon is the best in the league and they need to also step up their influence going forward. Trac kicks straighter and there is 10 plus to start!

Across the team find 2-3 extra goals per week, defence maybe a goal tighter and percentage is up 20~25%, and we won’t be losing too many matches in that scenario!

17-5 or better season, top 4 likely 2 finish and a red hot crack at the flag in September!

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32 minutes ago, D4Life said:

The above highlights that we have better depth going into 2023.

Grundy as extra ruck.

Tall forwards with JVR close last year and now another pre season of improvement and Schache better back up than Weid.

Hunter coming in gives greater flexibility around usage of Brayshaw & Jordan.

Looking at backline options, it looks rock solid. Tomlinson will be much better this year, so if one of May, Lever or Petty unavailable he will provide better coverage. Smaller backs look well and truly covered with Brayshaw and JJ available if multiple unavailable.

The challenge is for two of ANB, Spargo, Sparrow, Harmes, Chandler, maybe JJ to find 10 goals more a season, so basically a goal a week combined to boost the forward line.

Our midfield, wings, ruck also need to be adding a goal or two a week, you look at the talent - Gawn, Grundy, Oliver, Petracca, Viney, Brayshaw, Hunter & Langdon is the best in the league and they need to also step up their influence going forward. Trac kicks straighter and there is 10 plus to start!

Across the team find 2-3 extra goals per week, defence maybe a goal tighter and percentage is up 20~25%, and we won’t be losing too many matches in that scenario!

17-5 or better season, top 4 likely 2 finish and a red hot crack at the flag in September!

good points there. 

One big improvement I think could be overlooked is if Thomlinson can get back to his form pre-injury, which was absolute A grade. Last year he had no acceleration but signs are hes getting better. That is high quality depth to add to our backline. 

Also I think they biggest improvement will come if we have our 3 talls in TMAC, BB and JVR playing most of the year. it felt like most of last year we have 1 tall, one one leg. The next improvement would then be probably Hunter who we didnt have last year. Grundy might be an improvment of Jackson but not as much as Hunter might provide compared to JJ. 

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14 hours ago, dazzledavey36 said:

Yeah I agree.

To be honest I don't have much of a gauge on Howes. I saw bits of him at Casey but that was after his serious leg injury which really put him on the back foot.

I'm guessing he's training as a wingman? Still think he'd be more suited to that Jack Gunstn type role up forward.

Wouldn't be surprised to see Howes play games early in the year (on the wing).

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16 hours ago, A F said:

I think the biggest concern is the small defender role. Bowey needs to be playing, but I see him as a more offensive kicker and mopper upperer. I don't see him taking the Papley's of the league. That's ultimately why Hibberd probably has a role most weeks, because at this stage I can't see who else can play that lock down role.

Yeah I agree with you AF locking down the best small forwards might be our Achilles heel this year. Hibberd did a lot better last year than I thought he would given his injury troubles early in the season. 
Cameron did get the better of him in the finals but overall he was superb. 
But he’s a year older now and has dodgy calves. 
Hunt sometimes played the role but he’s gone. Really we still haven’t replaced Jetta. 
We will need someone to step up this year to fill this role. 

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If fit, and in number order ...

Locks (15): May, Salem, Petracca, Grundy, Viney, Lever, Brayshaw, Gawn, Hunter, Oliver, Langdon, ANB, Fritsch, Petty, Pickett

Contending (13): JVR, Harmes, Spargo, Hibberd, Bowey, Howes, Jordon, Rivers, TMac, J.Smith, Sparrow, Chandler, Brown

Could elevate (4): Laurie, Woewodin, McVee, D.Turner

Break Glass (4): Melksham, Schache, Tomlinson, Dunstan

Developing (7): Jefferson, Adams, Verrall, D.Smith, Sestan, Faris-White, AMW

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56 minutes ago, old55 said:

If fit, and in number order ...

Locks (15): May, Salem, Petracca, Grundy, Viney, Lever, Brayshaw, Gawn, Hunter, Oliver, Langdon, ANB, Fritsch, Petty, Pickett

Contending (13): JVR, Harmes, Spargo, Hibberd, Bowey, Howes, Jordon, Rivers, TMac, J.Smith, Sparrow, Chandler, Brown

Could elevate (4): Laurie, Woewodin, McVee, D.Turner

Break Glass (4): Melksham, Schache, Tomlinson, Dunstan

Developing (7): Jefferson, Adams, Verrall, D.Smith, Sestan, Faris-White, AMW

I think Melksham is better than break glass I'd have him contending.

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On 1/19/2023 at 12:07 PM, Colm said:

Yeah I agree with you AF locking down the best small forwards might be our Achilles heel this year. Hibberd did a lot better last year than I thought he would given his injury troubles early in the season. 
Cameron did get the better of him in the finals but overall he was superb. 
But he’s a year older now and has dodgy calves. 
Hunt sometimes played the role but he’s gone. Really we still haven’t replaced Jetta. 
We will need someone to step up this year to fill this role. 

Surely in our list there is a small defender of skill and ability. Maybe Laurie or even Chandler or Trent Burgoyne. 

Still  blame Goody for giving up on Jay Lockhart . Reckon if Choco and Yze were here a bit more of what if  he could be or do than his mistakes which were mostly changeable or removable. Gave up on JL after that Bulldog loss at Metricon where the run from defence in the last half saw that we were powerless to stop their momentum. 

We would possibly have an AFL player in defence replacing Lord Nev now. Are we going to see this  happen again  with (Toby B ) or even Chandler ?Laurie? Any other players Bowser or is he too good off HBack. 

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On 1/19/2023 at 1:24 PM, old55 said:

If fit, and in number order ...

Locks (15): May, Salem, Petracca, Grundy, Viney, Lever, Brayshaw, Gawn, Hunter, Oliver, Langdon, ANB, Fritsch, Petty, Pickett

Contending (13): JVR, Harmes, Spargo, Hibberd, Bowey, Howes, Jordon, Rivers, TMac, J.Smith, Sparrow, Chandler, Brown

Could elevate (4): Laurie, Woewodin, McVee, D.Turner

Break Glass (4): Melksham, Schache, Tomlinson, Dunstan

Developing (7): Jefferson, Adams, Verrall, D.Smith, Sestan, Faris-White, AMW

I love this categorisation. I dont think Hunter is a lock. Melksham is contending. Howes I think is more could elevate than contending. . 

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3 minutes ago, Lil_red_fire_engine said:

I love this categorisation. I dont think Hunter is a lock. Melksham is contending. Howes I think is more could elevate than contending. . 

Having watched training and seeing other reports I'm pretty sure Hunter is a lock.  Is ANB a lock? I reckon Chandler is eyeballing his spot. 

I agree on Howes and from reports I think Melksham is contending, I'm just not sure for who's spot.

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How people can not think Hunter is a lock staggers me a little.

He's exactly what we've been missing.  He's one of the best gut running wingman in the competition who knows how to hit a target inside 50.  This was perfectly demonstrated yesterday when he laced out Fritsch.  He makes the side better.

 

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6 minutes ago, Slartibartfast said:

Having watched training and seeing other reports I'm pretty sure Hunter is a lock.  Is ANB a lock? I reckon Chandler is eyeballing his spot. 

I agree on Howes and from reports I think Melksham is contending, I'm just not sure for who's spot.

Agree Hunter is a lock, B&F winner at Dogs and has really hurt the Demons in multiple games over the last 7 years!

I can’t wait for the season to start and have Hunter and Langdon on the wings being fed the ball of half back from Salem, Brayshaw and Bowey, and then ball moved quickly into the forward line!

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22 hours ago, 58er said:

Surely in our list there is a small defender of skill and ability. Maybe Laurie or even Chandler or Trent Burgoyne. 

Still  blame Goody for giving up on Jay Lockhart . Reckon if Choco and Yze were here a bit more of what if  he could be or do than his mistakes which were mostly changeable or removable. Gave up on JL after that Bulldog loss at Metricon where the run from defence in the last half saw that we were powerless to stop their momentum. 

We would possibly have an AFL player in defence replacing Lord Nev now. Are we going to see this  happen again  with (Toby B ) or even Chandler ?Laurie? Any other players Bowser or is he too good off HBack. 

I liked Jay Lockhart, but no other club picked him up when Demons let him go, and while very good at VFL level, big difference between being very good at VFL level and making it at AFL level. Who would you pick Lockhart in front of - Bowey, Hibberd, Rivers, JJ? I don’t think so!
I also like Chandler, is great at VFL level but has struggled when given AFL chances, limited though they may be! Would be great to see him get half a dozen AFL games in a row in 2023! Then at least he gets a decent go! 

Laurie showed some glimpses at VFL level but needs to do a lot more to get a crack at AFL level.

Bedford at least showed glimpses at AFL level, but would go totally missing. The 2nd small forward role is tough to play.

Some on Demonland over rate VFL performances, there is a big step up to AFL!

Sounds like from training reports ball movement into the forward line will be a lot quicker this year, making the life of small forwards and forwards generally easier. As fast ball movement give’s opposition defenders less time to get set! 2021 GF our ball movement forward accelerated from the point Harmes went to Fritsch and goal.

If Demons play will that level of speed and decisiveness going forward, and we get a good injury run, we can expect another flag in 2023!

Edited by D4Life
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On 1/21/2023 at 12:43 PM, D4Life said:

I can’t wait for the season to start and have Hunter and Langdon on the wings being fed the ball of half back from Salem, Brayshaw and Bowey, and then ball moved quickly into the forward line!

I agree this is an elite line. Although it will be interesting to see how we go without Hunts run.  Bowey and Brayshaw are reliable but not quick.  Do we need to look for another HB to support Salem? He's 28 this yr.

 

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3 hours ago, DeeLicous said:

I agree this is an elite line. Although it will be interesting to see how we go without Hunts run.  Bowey and Brayshaw are reliable but not quick.  Do we need to look for another HB to support Salem? He's 28 this yr.

 

Rivers is there snd Brayshaw plus maybe Wowoedin or we might get Kye Turner vis the SSP rule.  

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1 hour ago, 58er said:

Rivers is there snd Brayshaw plus maybe Wowoedin or we might get Kye Turner vis the SSP rule.  

Beat me to the punch on Rivers!

I think quicker ball movement also makes teams look faster! Sounds like the Demons are doing this in training from our track watcher reports!

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On 1/19/2023 at 12:24 PM, old55 said:

If fit, and in number order ...

Locks (15): May, Salem, Petracca, Grundy, Viney, Lever, Brayshaw, Gawn, Hunter, Oliver, Langdon, ANB, Fritsch, Petty, Pickett

Contending (13): JVR, Harmes, Spargo, Hibberd, Bowey, Howes, Jordon, Rivers, TMac, J.Smith, Sparrow, Chandler, Brown

Could elevate (4): Laurie, Woewodin, McVee, D.Turner

Break Glass (4): Melksham, Schache, Tomlinson, Dunstan

Developing (7): Jefferson, Adams, Verrall, D.Smith, Sestan, Faris-White, AMW

Yes a good assessment.  

Though

- I’d have Howes as “could elevate “. He only played 7-8 games at Casey last year and whilst he showed his potential, he’d still need to develop his body before he’s ready.  Definitely has the potential to be a very good versatile (wing/forward) player. 

- A fit Tmac would be a lock  

- Goody would also have Spargo, Sparrow and ANB as “locks” !!!! 

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On 1/21/2023 at 12:39 PM, Gator said:

How people can not think Hunter is a lock staggers me a little.

He's exactly what we've been missing.  He's one of the best gut running wingman in the competition who knows how to hit a target inside 50.  This was perfectly demonstrated yesterday when he laced out Fritsch.  He makes the side better.

 

It's not the 2018-19 Hunter we have. He has trailed off a fair bit in recent years. Was dropped by the dogs last year

No question on his ability but let's see if he has the mentality, focus and drive to earn a spot and keep it

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On 1/19/2023 at 1:24 PM, old55 said:

If fit, and in number order ...

Locks (15): May, Salem, Petracca, Grundy, Viney, Lever, Brayshaw, Gawn, Hunter, Oliver, Langdon, ANB, Fritsch, Petty, Pickett

Contending (13): JVR, Harmes, Spargo, Hibberd, Bowey, Howes, Jordon, Rivers, TMac, J.Smith, Sparrow, Chandler, Brown

Could elevate (4): Laurie, Woewodin, McVee, D.Turner

Break Glass (4): Melksham, Schache, Tomlinson, Dunstan

Developing (7): Jefferson, Adams, Verrall, D.Smith, Sestan, Faris-White, AMW

Great analysis.

I wouldn't have Salem as a lock. Bowey, Brayshaw and Rivers are all stiff competition as high half backs.

Hunter is likely but not a lock IMO. He is an upgrade if he can be his best, but his games played and numbers were down last year. Let's see how he fits before calling him a lock.

ANB is not a lock for mine. He needs to be better in front of goal.

Sparrow is likely given he has greater versatility than others to play midfield and forward.

Harmes is also probably likely also, although the addition of Hunter makes it harder for Jordon and Harmes this year.

Howes still looks to slight for me to be truly contending. I'm a fan of his potential, but round 1 seems unlikely.

I see Laurie as a real longshot.

Of the Could Elevate grouping, I think Turner is the most likely and if he takes a step, it could see Petty pushed forward.

 

Fat Tony's Groupings

Locks (12): May, Petracca, Grundy, Viney, Lever, Brayshaw, Gawn, Oliver, Langdon, Fritsch, Petty, Pickett

Likely (4): Salem, Hunter, ANB, Sparrow

Contending (11): JVR, Harmes, Spargo, Hibberd, Bowey, Jordon, Rivers, TMac, J.Smith, , Chandler, Brown

Could elevate (4): Woewodin, McVee, D.Turner, Howes

Break Glass (4): Melksham, Schache, Tomlinson, Dunstan

Developing (8): Laurie, Jefferson, Adams, Verrall, D.Smith, Sestan, Faris-White, AMW

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, DubDee said:

It's not the 2018-19 Hunter we have. He has trailed off a fair bit in recent years. Was dropped by the dogs last year

No question on his ability but let's see if he has the mentality, focus and drive to earn a spot and keep it

It's pretty obvious that we recruited him because we were confident he was over his personal issues and that we were recruiting an historically very good player.  Afterall, he's only just turned 28 and is smack bang in the middle of his prime.  

I've watched plenty of Hunter over the years and his ''normal'' is one of the best wingman in the league.  An A-grade wingman.

It's hardly a stretch to think he plays to his normal in a new environment where he feels refreshed.

Having seen the last 2 training sessions he's been the standout along with Pickett and Viney.

My eyes are confirming what commonsense tells me.

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There’s a lot of variables that will impact the round 1 team based on moving players around. For instance:

If Lever is fully fit the I can’t have Brayshaw in the same backline, it’s another drop off intercept player with poor kicking and lack of rebounding run. Rivers, Bowey and even McVee fight for 2 spots there. If Lever happened to be out then Gus makes more sense intercepting, with Tomlinson or Turner rather than one if the smalls.

If Gus isn’t down back then he probably has the lead for the 3rd wing (Hunter really firming for the 2nd wing) and 4/5th on baller spot, with JJ and Harmes behind.

Can Pickett really be the 4/5th on baller too? Or is he still primarily a forward with short stints as the 6th on baller.

If Koz is predominantly an on baller then Melksham and Chandler come in to contention as forward line replacements for some goal scoring/forward craft. If Pickett isn’t really a mid then Sparrow and Harmes have the edge as mid/forward types.

The only player I can see taking ANB’s role directly is Sparrow given he has the tank, the speed and the selfless running. But maybe we can patch that role with Viney, Harmes, Sparrow all doing stints as the defensive forward. Although my guess is if Pickett is going to the midfield they won’t mess with ANB early in the season.

Last year it was pretty clear that the aim was to recreate the 2021 team. This year there’s a few more moving parts and we don’t know how much the coaches will tinker with personnel in order to change the game plan.

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On 1/19/2023 at 2:21 PM, WERRIDEE said:

I think Melksham is better than break glass I'd have him contending.

Agree….and he is training  like he really wants it….6 more games to qualify as father/ son with the Dees…..he will really succeed this year IMO.

 

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