10 down, 13 to go.
WITH just two trades left to use until the dreaded bye rounds are upon us, there is plenty of panic starting to circulate in the minds of AFL fantasy coaches. Injuries to premium midfielders have hampered some well-made trade plans in the last few weeks with one last chance to right the ship before we start counting our best 18 scores. Before we take a look ahead to the future, let’s discuss all the relevant topics from the 10th round of the season.
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2105 – The number of times I said “I wish I was back in Toronto right now” this weekend
The trials and tribulations of the LF&C continued this week, moving back slightly despite posting a decent score. If Tom Rockliff does miss any time then a move from him to Lachie Whitfield is on the cards to set me up nicely for the byes.
FRY’S FAVOURITE FIVE
Honourable Mentions: Luke Shuey (134), Tim Taranto (130), Max Gawn (132)
+5. Brodie Grundy, Magpies (RUC, $858K – 149)
HUGE. I’m beginning to run out of ways to explain how Brodie Grundy is monstering his opponents. Fremantle doesn’t give up huge scores to opposing ruckmen, but given Grundy’s rich form you can all but pencil him in for another 60 hitout, 20 disposal performance.
+4. Bachar Houli, Tigers (DEF, $679K – 144)
THREE straight 110’s (and four in his last five) have Bachar Houli shaping as a top-6 defender right now. His huge season-best 144 last week was a huge plus for around 14% of the competition as his price continues to inflate. The proud owner of a Round 14 bye could make him a viable upgrade in the next few weeks, but with the Saints and Suns following his week off, we may have to wait until post-byes to snag the Tigers stud.
+3. Todd Goldstein, Kangaroos (RUC, $617K – 153)
AFTER failing to score in triple figures the entire season Goldy came to play on Saturday! On a tough day for the club, Goldstein stood out as easily the best player on the turf, amassing 28 touches and 57 hitouts for his round-high 153. There aren’t a ton of teams running around with Goldstein in their rucks, but the few that have held him through testing times were handsomely rewarded this weekend.
+2. Josh Kelly, Giants (MID, $780K – 135)
IN the preseason I made the bold prediction that Josh Kelly would be the best fantasy player in 2019 and if he didn’t get hurt he could certainly make a case. Currently one of five players averaging 115 or more (three of those players are Giants), JK has started to piece a few good rounds of footy together and should be high up on everyone’s shopping list.
Image from heraldsun.com.au
+1. Ricky Henderson, Hawks (MID, $706K – 143)
WHILE James Worpel is the most popular Hawks fantasy midfielder, Ricky Henderson has been the star of the show through 10 weeks. No Hawthorn player has scored more points so far this season than Henderson who posted his third score over 125 against Port Adelaide. You couldn’t possibly roll the dice and play Henderson, but his form can’t be denied.
FRY’S FRUSTRATING FIVE
Dishonourable Mentions: Jack Macrae (77), Steele Sidebottom (44), Travis Boak (80)
-5. Jack Ziebell, Kangaroos (FWD, $600K – 48)
SMH. Playing 93% of time as a permanent forward (this may or may not be an accurate percentage) against the Bulldogs saw Ziebell score only a handful of points. However, when he was allowed to roam further up the ground he added 30-40 odd points, 20 of which came in the last quarter. Here’s hoping that the 4th most popular trade in last week will be deployed as a permanent midfielder by new coach Rhyce Shaw.
-4. Jaeger O’Meara, Hawks (MID, $678K – 56)
SHAPING as a unique form midfielder after the first quarter of the season, O’Meara has been nothing short of disappointing in the last month. Three scores under 85 in his last four have him losing value, culminating in a season-worst 56 last weekend. I wouldn’t offload him just yet, but with his bye approaching soon owners will have one finger on the trigger if he keeps this up.
Image from theaustralian.com.au
-3. Stephen Coniglio, Giants (MID, $687K – 69)
SPEAKING of failing premiums, Coniglio looks like a shell of the fantasy player who started the season. Minor injury issues have been compounded in the last few rounds and a cork saw him register only 69 points in Round 10 in just 69% time on ground in his latest appearance. Making matters worse you just know the week you trade him out he’s going to score 120.
-2. Clayton Oliver, Demons (MID, $754K – 62)
ON Sunday Clayton Olver managed only 62, almost two weeks ago to the day since he scored 161. Technically you can’t fault him for his 110 average, but these frustrating types of performances can’t bob up too often. Things don’t get too much easier with a matchup against a bullocking Adelaide midfield in Darwin. Let’s right the ship Clayton.
-1. Angus Brayshaw, Demons (MID, $597K – 75)
I’VE given up on trying to motivate Angus Brayshaw, so maybe ranking him at the bottom of the Frustrating Five will send a rocket up him? It is worth pointing out that he had 53 second-half points, giving owners another false sense of hope. The chance you had to turn him into anything of value has probably passed and if you were bitten by the injury bug and had other pressing needs (like me), you’ve probably got to ride it out now.
IN – BYE’S, bye’s, bye’s. If you’ve left it this late then use your last two trades before the byes begin to try and balance your structure as much as you can. A lot of coaches try to have a bye split something like 8/10/12, but I’m all for focusing more on individual lines rather than looking at your team as a whole. I’d advise against bringing in players who own a Round 12 bye like Jack Macrae (MID, $707K – 77) and Zach Merrett (MID, $793K – 117) and instead make a play at the likes of Andrew Gaff (MID, $800K – 120) and Lachie Whitfield (DEF/MID, $805K – 120) who own the Round 13 & 14 bye respectively.
ON the downgrade front there are a few options worth considering starting with recent debutant Brett Bewley (MID, $177K – 38). Making his long-awaited debut for the Dockers, Bewley didn’t light the world on fire, but I think he showed enough to hold his spot in the side. Second gamers Mitch Hinge (DEF, $209K – 68) and Oskar Baker (MID, $202K – 72) had much better showings and hopefully, they can keep producing over the bye rounds.
OUT – THE biggest question coaches are fronted with this week is what to do with Tom Rockliff (MID, $712K – 91) and his questionable hamstring. All reports indicate Rocky will make the trip to China to play St Kilda this week, but with his bye coming in Round 12, I’m subscribing to the idea of moving him on. Those who are still stuck with Angus Brayshaw (MID, $597K – 75) may as well hold him now after his epic $145k price decline over the last month and the coaches who traded in Jack Ziebell (FWD, $600K – 48) should ride out the next few weeks to see what role Rhyce Shaw uses the bullocking midfielder in. It will be hard to resist the temptation to move on Stephen Coniglio, Giants (MID, $687K – 69) and Jack Macrae (MID, $707K – 77) after lacklustre performances, but their reputation should see them survive the axe from a lot of coaches.
AS we prepare for the dreaded bye rounds, I’d advise holding on to the players who have held their spot in the team for most or all of the season to date and are posting solid scores. That includes sticking with the likes of Michael Gibbons (MID/FWD, $383K – 64), Callum Wilkie (DEF, $359K – 68) and Tom Atkins (MID/FWD, $349K – 96) who can help keep you afloat during the three best-of-18 rounds. The same can’t be said for Jack Petrucelle (FWD, $358K – 34), Jack Scrimshaw (DEF, $387K – 56), Matthew Parker (FWD, $319K – 66) and (unpopular take) Jay Lockhart (DEF/MID, $383K – 43). Finally, it’s worth pointing out to the 24% of coaches who still own Charlie Constable (MID, $500, N/A) he injured himself in VFL action on the weekend and isn’t expected to be back any time soon.
WAIVER WIRE MOVES
DUE to this article surfacing on Tuesday, I apologise in advance if you missed out on claiming some of these names, however, it pays to check in case your Draft peers haven’t acted quickly. One of my personal favourite additions this week is versatile Hawk Chad Wingard (MID/FWD, 54% – 85) who can help a few coaches bitten by the injury bug. I’ve been on the Brandan Parfit (FWD, 39% – 84) train all year and he could still be up for grabs in some leagues along with Darcy Byrne Jones (DEF, 57% – 126) who had a season-best performance on the weekend.
Image from twitter.com
IF Callum Coleman-Jones (RUC/FWD, 6% – 66) survives the cut he could give you a heartbeat in the ruck department for a week or two if things are looking dire. Lesser owned types Sam Powell-Pepper (MID, 26% – 95), Levi Greenwood (DEF, 7% – 85) and Riley Knight (MID/FWD, 13% – 78) can all be used, depending on your positional need, to add some depth to your Draft outfit. All three of them are in teams of mine right now and should produce scores in the 70’s & 80’s throughout the second half of the season.
THE opportunity to turn Rockliff into Whitfield might be too good for me to pass up, even if it seems like Rocky will play in China. I can’t move Angus Brayshaw to anything really meaningful, so it’s likely that Rockliff is the one who is moved on. Should Bewley hold his spot, he’ll be a coveted downgrade and there’s a chance I do a double down this week to load up on cash before we launch into three trades a week.
T.Rockliff → L.Whitfield
W.Hayes → B.Bewley