Fallen Star – Lachie Neale
2016: Games/22; Averages: AF/111, SC/113
2017: Games/21; Averages: AF/100, SC/109
You all know that I rate Lachie very highly already. We also know that he was underdone last year due to three operations and limited preseason and although battling injury he still delivered a ton average in both formats. There was also talk that with the return of Fyfe his output would reduce as he would lose mid field time.
Moving into 2018 we seem to have a different scenario. Firstly he is fit and firing with a solid preseason under his belt, even playing the first JLT and dominating in the guts. Secondly it looks as if it will be Fyfe moving forward to create scoring opportunities for the Dockers, who need to improve their goal kicking power.
The beauty with this star this year is that, his draft value has dropped and likely that you could get a captain option in the second and maybe third round. That is gold!
It is likely that Mitchell, Merrett, Martin, Kelly, Treloar, Adams, Duncan, Danger, Sloane, Crouch (Matt), Zorko, Beams, Ablett, Murphy and Rockliff are mids that could be drafted before him in season only leagues. If so that would mean an early third round pick. If you chose well and pick up Neale as your third player, you are in the hunt already.
One last bite with a side of risk – Aaron Sandilands
2017: Games/10; Averages: DT/76, SC/87
Yes it has been 3 seasons since he gave us his last big year, but he finally seems to have the body right, much less challenge for his place with Clarke and Griffin off the list and currently an injured Darcy the only other on the list capable of taking his place.
We have suggested for a few years that late ruck options are the go, 2017 gave us Kruezer, Nankervis, McEvoy and Witts as value late picks and Sandi could be our man this year.
2017 would be his last hurrah and I am sure he will do everything in his power to deliver a great season, it’s just if the body can hold up. Handcuffing him and Darcy seems like a smart move and will cost you little on the draft table.
If the rucks go early, pick up a strong midfield at take the punt on the biggest man in the game as it could be very rewarding. So much for being an ageist eh!
Ultimate Gem – Connor Blakely
2016: Games/17; Averages: DT/91, SC/89
Last year my comments on Blakely were “Watch in draft, BUY ASAP in keeper” This year it is simple buy when you get the opportunity as in Ultimate footy he is a defender and he will be in the top 3. He is a ball magnet and can score big whether in the midfield or playing the floating role down back.
If you take his lowest two scores out from last year (Poor game round 2 and 1st Quarter injury round 19) his average is 102.3, this included 7 tons with a season high of 149. Don’t think it was just the floating role, he also scored 134 in round 9 tagging Marc Murphy.
This boy can seriously find the footy and only entering his fourth season and has a very bright future ahead of him. All aboard for Connorsville!