COLOSSAL. Gargantuan. Outrageous. They are just some of the synonyms you could use to describe a lot of AFL fantasy scores in Round 17. 21 players topped 120 points during one of the highest scoring rounds in recent memory. I was lucky enough to score a season-high of 2,300 plus, but it was a very competitive weekend.

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My Team

2314 – The number of uncontested possessions Andrew Gaff averages this year (tag?)
THE top four scorers this round were in my team, which helped my score balloon up. Larid’s loophole effort of 122 was good enough for me, overlooking Gawn and Mitchell as my captain choice. It was a balanced effort from there on out, but if I really want to advance I need to start axing underperformers.

AFL Fantasy 2018 - Round 17 Wrap Up 1

Newest DPP’s

AS Round 18 graces us we are dealt a third and final batch of dual position players this weekend. A lot of speculation surrounded Patrick Dangerfield, who finally, to the delight of owners was granted forward status. A handful of rookies Brody Mihochek (gained FWD), Stefan Giro (gained FWD), Quinton Narkle (gained FWD), Ed Richards (gained MID) and Michael Apeness (gained RUC) all added a position, but aside from that the new position reveals were pretty uneventful.

Fry’s Favourite Five

I’M mixing things up a little bit for the run home, I’ve been doing my MVP rankings, basing them off my past +3’s and -3’s. For the home straight though, I will be awarding a 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 votes system, declaring the winner after Round 23. An update on the MVP race places will be available soon.

+5. Patrick Dangerfield, Cats (MID/FWD, $660K – 151)
DANGER up seeds Mitchell despite the fact that the PIG scored more than the superstar Cat. A season-high 150+ couldn’t have come at a better time for owners, with a lot of coaches close to trading him out after a miserable 83.6 three-round average. Welcome back.

+4. Tom Mitchell, Hawks (MID, $854K – 157)
SO much for a worrying tag. Tom Mitchell shrugged off all the doubt from coaches around the globe and pumped out the best score of the round. Seeing Mitchell rack up 40+ touches (for the 8th time this season) in a loss is encouraging and hopefully, he can surge to the end of the year without another 80. Oink.

+3. Lachie Whitfield, Giants (MID/DEF, $679K – 150)
IN any other round, Whitfield would find himself higher up on this list. Still, scoring a 150 for the first time in 106 AFL games is a massive achievement for the Giants youngster, who is having a career year in 2018. Fingers crossed this isn’t his first massive score.

+2. Zach Merrett, Bombers (MID, $728K – 138)
ANOTHER player who is slightly hard done by because of the high scoring round. Merrett seems to be back to his best notching his 6th straight score in triple figures. The forgetful start to the season is behind him now and another few big scores could hear those Fantasy Pig whispers start up again.

AFL Fantasy 2018 - Round 17 Wrap Up 1Image from zimbio.com

+1. Jack Macrae, Bulldogs (MID, $781K – 133)
SHOUTOUT to Jack Redden, who monstered Round 17, but Jack Macrae’s performance just outshines him. Going up against the Demons and coming in off a three-match layoff, all signs pointed to a low score from Macrae. Instead, the Dogs star scored 133, the first 130+ score Melbourne has allowed since Patrick Cripps in Round 9. Macrae still owns an enormous breakeven so it’s wise to wait a week or two and he drops in price. All signs point to Macrae being must have property by years end though.

Fry’s Frustrating Five

-5. Brodie Grundy, Pies (RUC, $779K – 68)
A lot of people flagged the Eagles game as a danger game for Grundy. Even though Nic Natanui suffered a knee injury in the first half, Grundy wasn’t able to capitalise scoring under 100 for the first time since Round 1. He’ll be better next week, but it’s still a letdown.

-4. Steele Sidebottom, Pies (MID, $676K – 48)
SPEAKING of letdowns, Sidebottom failed to shrug the Mark Hutchings tag all day, en route to his lowest score of the year. It wasn’t a memorable outing for Collingwood and fantasy coaches might choose to send a message by rage trading Sidebottom. Don’t overreact though, much like his above teammate he will return to form against the Roos.

-3. Luke Parker, Swans (MID, $619K – 59)
AFTER scoring back to back 100’s coaches were led to believe that Parker had turned a corner. He hasn’t. He might be good for 95-100 from here on out, but we need more out of someone clogging up a midfield spot. Lift.

-2. Elliot Yeo, Eagles (DEF/MID, $689K – 76)
IN such a high scoring round there weren’t a lot of players to pick on. Elliot Yeo’s 76 was a fine score, but we wanted more out of the premier fantasy defender. West Coast doesn’t have the nicest end to close the season, but if they are all healthy and winning points will come against any opponent. Hopefully that means Yeo returns to the 110 club ASAP.

-1. Josh Kelly, Giants (MID, $654K – 88)
AT this time of the year we can’t afford to have these blemishes from super premiums. It’s not time to panic, but a second sub 90 really isn’t good enough from Kelly and coaches are on high alert. Time to turn it around against the Power.

AFL Fantasy 2018 - Round 17 Wrap Up 3Image from myaccount.news.com.au

Noteworthy Numbers

EVEN though he scored well against Melbourne, Jack Macrae (MID, $791K – BE 161) still owns this rounds highest breakeven. Popular names Josh Kelly (MID, $754K – BE 153), Steele Sidebottom (MID, $676K – BE 153) and Brodie Grundy (RUC, $779K – BE 149) own the next highest BE’s after their rough weekend.

FROM a rookie front debutants Colin O’Riodarn (DEF, $202K – BE -11) and Alex Morgan (DEF, $199K – BE -8) both made themselves genuine trade targets. The usual suspects Brayden Sier (MID, $267K – BE 7), Quinton Narkle (MID/FWD, $262K – BE 10) and Brad Lynch (DEF, $259K – BE 11) all still have room to grow as well.

WHEN it comes to form Tom Mitchell (MID, $854K – L3 149.3) has recaptured the mantle from Andrew Gaff (MID, $787K – L3 134.3). By no means has Gaff been disappointing with the Eagles gun incredibly averaging over 130 in his last three weeks. Zach Merrett (MID, $728K – L3 122.7) deserves a shoutout while Max Gawn (RUC, $752K – L3 122.3), Angus Brayshaw (DEF/MID, $694K – L3 119) and Devon Smith (FWD/MID, $710K – L3 113.7) are dominating the other lines.

Quickfire Trade Thoughts

IN – IT seems like Andrew Gaff (MID, $787K – 109) is destined to score no matter who his opponent is. He is as close to a must have as possible right now. If you don’t have the coin don’t worry there is plenty of value out there at the moment, especially in the middle. Crows duo Rory Sloane (MID, $595K – 111) and Matt Crouch (MID, $679K – 94) are ripe for the picking along with Dustin Martin (MID, $588K – 91) and Luke Shuey (MID, $557K – 116). It’s not a crazy idea to trade in one (or two) of these value mids for the next stretch of games.

THE above-mentioned rookies are all good trade in targets if they hold their jobs. In defense, I’d look at Colin O’Riordan (DEF, $202K – 84), Alex Morgan (DEF, $199K – 79) and Brad Lynch (DEF, $259K – 41) in that order. I’d then side with Brayden Sier (MID, $267K – 54) over Quinton Narkle (MID/FWD, $262K – 57) in the midfield.

OUT – AT this time of the year we can’t afford to have underperforming premo’s. That being said it’s important not to overreact to one or two bad games. Last week Steele Sidebottom (MID, $676K – 48), Brodie Grundy (RUC, $779K – 68) and Josh Kelly (MID, $754K – 88) all underperformed but that doesn’t mean you’re going to trade them out. Back them in to fire.

IT’S time to ditch another group of rookies. If you have Joel Smith (DEF/MID, $265K – DNP) clogging up a bench spot then he could be downgraded for one of the above names. Failing that turning Matt Guelfi (FWD/MID, $425K – 90), Tom Doedee (DEF, $508K – 70) and/or Bayley Fritsch (FWD/MID, $555K – 76) into a premium should be a high priority.

Looking Ahead

MOST of the fantasy community dodged any tribunal worries this week. A few names copped a fine or two, but at this rate, Taylor Walker is the only player who has been banned. Ryan Nyhuis could be facing some time on the sidelines after his vicious talked KO’d Port star Robbie Gray. Gray’s status for next week is up in the air, but it would appear unlikely he suits up against the Giants.

GRAY’S Port Adelaide teammate Patrick Ryder seems set for time off too after he suffered a hip flexor injury. Ryder has battled injury worries all season and losing him would be a big loss for the Power. The Eagles are bracing for the worst news with Nic Natanui suffering a suspected ACL tear on the weekend. Hopefully, for his sake, the news isn’t as grim as feared. Sydney’s Josh Kennedy hurt himself in a tackle attempt early in the second quarter against the Roos that forced him to sit out the rest of the game. Matthew Kreuzer failed to make it to quarter time after he was suffering shortness of breath. Watch his status for Round 18.

FROM the reserves Michael Barlow (159) would be unlucky not to earn a reprieve. The forgotten Sun was awesome with 44 disposals for Gold Coast’s NEAFL side. Dom Sheed (West Coast, 126), Sam Lloyd (Richmond, 152) and Patrick Wilson (Adelaide, 142) all put their hands up for selection with best afield performances on the weekend too. Charlie Constable (Geelong, 134) might be close to debuting and Brett Delidio (107) was amongst the Giants best as he pushes for a comeback. And finally, could we be about to see Nathan Freeman (100) make his long-awaited debut? Another 25 touches on the weekend helped his cause as coaches cross their fingers.

My Trades

AT this point in time getting O’Riordan or Morgan into my defense for Rice makes too much sense. That allows me to turn Lachie Neale, who has been a fine servant into another midfielder. I can empty my bank and go up to Andrew Gaff or maybe I could downgrade to Dusty. Hmmm…

Trades
Neale → Gaff
Rice → O’Roiden

Good luck in Round 18!

Peace ✌