The 200th episode of The Draft Doctors podcast has been celebrated in typical #onbrand fashion this week, in the way of our first mock draft for season 2019.
Some of the best drafting minds in the fantasy community joined the extended Draft Doctor family for a drafting extravaganza. In the span of 3 days (January 24-27), the 10 drafters selected 180 players collectively across 18 rounds, with plenty of interesting picks, diverse strategies, and supreme banter being utilised.
We hope this mock can give you some idea of how a competitive draft might play out and where our heads are at regarding overall ranks at this point of the pre-season.
If you love mock drafts, make sure you check out our brand new and improved ‘Mock Draft Simulator’ – hone your own mocking skills to be the best come draft day!
While reading this article, listen along below to the 200th episode of the podcast, as The Draft Doctor’s founders, Stevie Fizz and Jonathon Crockett discuss the picks from this mock draft with the drafters themselves – giving you the underlying thinking behind some of strategies employed and the most interesting picks made by our expert drafters.
The Draft Order:
Archie – Over the Line Sports
Zano – Over the Line Sports
Warnie – The Traders / DT Talk
Dos – The Draft Doctors
Cam – The Draft Doctors
Christian – The Extended Bench
“We Got Big Cox” – Long-time Draft Doctors favourite / contributor
Steve – The Draft Doctors
Jono – The Draft Doctors
The Statesman – The Draft Doctors
- 5-7-1-5 setup
- 10 teams, 18 rounds
- Snake draft (first pick round 1 = last pick round 2)
- Captains = ON
- AFL Fantasy scoring
1. Brodie Grundy (ARCHIE)
The “Ruck Pig” goes number 1 following a huge year at the Pies. The 24-year-old averaged 120 AFL Fantasy points in 2018, while establishing himself as a perma-captain lock in draft leagues. Grundy exceeded 120 AFL Fantasy points in 59% of his games last season, while only dropping under 100 on 3 occasions.
2. Jackson Macrae (ZANO)
Second only to Tom Mitchell for AFL Fantasy average last season, Macrae (like Grundy) only went under 100 on 3 times in 2018. His 43 disposals, 14 marks, and 7 tackles in round 23 versing Richmond produced a ludicrous 190 AFL Fantasy points – the 10th highest fantasy score since 2000, per FanFooty.
3. Patrick Dangerfield (WARNIE)
After a somewhat disappointing 2018 fantasy-wise, Dangerfield enters 2019 with forward status, making the prospect of a return to his 2016 and 2017 form – where he spent more time in the midfield – a very juicy proposition. In those seasons, Dangerfield averaged 117.9 and 120.5 respectively, with many fantasy coaches believing he will return to those lofty heights in 2019.
4. Patrick Cripps (DOS)
The Blues co-captain averaged close to 30 disposals while laying over 6 tackles per outing in 2018. Finishing last season with an AFL Fantasy average of 109.3, the 23-year-old came home like a steam train, averaging 118.3 AFL Fantasy points after Carlton’s round 12 bye – the 2nd highest average behind only Tom Mitchell, per DTLive.
5. Zach Merrett (CAM)
Struggling with the tag and 2 early concussions (one in the preseason, one in round 1), made 2018 a trying year for Merrett. However, the 23-year-old finished the season strongly, averaging 114.1 following Essendon’s bye. With Dylan Shiel’s arrival at the Bombers, fantasy pundits are hoping he is lower on the tagging hierarchy (and can stay injury-free) to allow a return to his 2016 and 2017 form, where he averaged 117.7 and 117 respectively.
6. Stephen Coniglio (CHRISTIAN)
An injury-free season finally saw the Giants vice-captain reach his potential as a fantasy gun. Finishing 2018 with a 110.3 AFL Fantasy average, Coniglio will be tasked with an even greater midfield burden without Dylan Shiel. With tag targets ahead of him (Kelly and Whitfield), Coniglio’s willingness to tackle while racking up the pill makes him a genuine fantasy star.
7. Josh Kelly (BIG COX)
Another GWS star, Kelly could be set to soar in 2019. Following an injury-interrupted season last year, the soon-to-be 24-year-old still managed to put up a very respectable 108.3 AFL Fantasy points per outing in his limited 15 games. His season-highs against (guess who!) Gold Coast and Carlton – 166 and 153 respectively – illustrate his huge upside.
8. Jake Lloyd (STEVE)
The first defender off the board at pick 8. With the new rules awarding defenders tasked with the kick-in an additional +3 for every kick-in taken outside the square (without kicking it to themselves), Lloyd emerges as a huge beneficiary. Lloyd took 55.5% of Sydney’s kick-ins in 2018, while playing on 29% of the time. Already in the absolute top tier for defenders in draft rankings, a slight boost to Lloyd’s 101.6 AFL Fantasy average of last season might make him the best defender of 2019.
9. Rory Laird (JONO)
Rory Laird had an extraordinary year as a ball magnet backman, averaging 32.2 disposals, 6.2 marks and 107.8 AFL Fantasy points, the best average for a defender in 2018. Laird had four 40+ disposal games, while eclipsing 120 AFL Fantasy points 7 times throughout the season. Doesn’t benefit as much from the new kick-in rules, but still racks up the pill at will.
10. Lachie Neale (STATESMAN)
The new Brisbane recruit rounds out the 1st round of the mock draft. Lachie Neale averaged 100.2 AFL Fantasy points in 2018 for Fremantle, his second straight season with that average. A consistent fantasy performer, Neale was at his best in 2016 sans teammate Nat Fyfe (who was restricted to just 5 games due to injury), where he averaged 111.1 AFL Fantasy points and led the league in disposals. Remarkably durable for an in-and-under midfielder, Neale has played 22 games in 3 out the last 5 seasons – playing 21 in the other 2.
11. Lachie Whitfield (STATESMAN)
Whitfield averaged 100 AFL Fantasy points for the first time in his young career in 2018. Playing primarily in defence, Whitfield’s damaging run and carry off the half back line was crucial to the Giants success last season. Whitfield may become the top tag target without Dylan Shiel in 2019, but regardless will be one of the top defenders for fantasy this season.
12. Devon Smith (JONO)
The second forward off the board was the highest averaging player in our forward lines last season. Smith had a phenomenal first season at the Dons, leading the league in tackles as he relished more time in the midfield. Retaining forward status in 2019, Smith should continue to hone his craft as a midfielder while kicking snags and applying pressure up forward. Drafters will be hoping he can come close to the 106.6 AFL Fantasy points he put up last season.
13. Kade Simpson (STEVE)
This 307-game veteran is still a fantasy jet. Entering his 17th season, Simpson is another to benefit from the kick-in rule, being the main man in that role at Carlton. Simpson is a freak when it comes to durability, playing in 20+ games in all but 1 season since 2006. Turning 35 this season, there is no evidence to suggest this old dog has lost any tricks.
14. Andrew Gaff (BIG COX)
Aside from ‘the incident’, Gaff had a terrific year on the footy field. Having played most of his career as an outside mid, the 26-year-old endurance machine added an inside element to his game, having career-high numbers in disposals, contested possessions, clearances, tackles, and goals. Gaff will miss the first 2 games of 2019 due to suspension.
15. Elliot Yeo (CHRISTIAN)
The once heralded “Yeo-Yeo” – due to his up-and-down fantasy production – emerged as a consistent midfielder with a high scoring ceiling in 2018. Finishing the season averaging 106.7, Yeo stormed home in the absence of the aformentioned, Gaff – averaging 119.7 without his All-Australian teammate. At 25-years-old, Yeo could take another step up in his second year as a permanent midfielder.
16. Matt Crouch (CAM)
An injury in round 2 last season stunted what should have been a huge year for Matt Crouch. Despite missing 4 games due to hamstring issues, Crouch still had a stellar year, averaging 32.2 disposals and 104.9 AFL Fantasy points. If the second half of the year is any indication, Crouch could take an even bigger step into potential perma-captain territory in 2019. Following Adelaide’s round 14 bye, Crouch averaged 116.2 AFL Fantasy points.
17. Connor Blakely (DOS)
How things can change in the matter of a week. Just days after I picked Blakely up in the second round (expecting big things from the defender-eligible, likely Lachie Neale replacement for Fremantle, who averaged 91.5 AFL Fantasy points last season), news emerged that Blakely had sustained a serious hamstring injury, with the 22-year-old expected to miss 10-12 weeks. Unfortunately, that’s footy – wishing Connor a speedy recovery. Blakely would not go this high in an updated mock!
18. Clayton Oliver (WARNIE)
Following surgery on both shoulders this offseason and concerns surrounding Viney’s integration back into the engine room, Clayton Oliver’s slide could provide huge value should he fall this low in draft. An elite midfielder at just 21-years-old, Oliver averaged 109 AFL Fantasy points in 2018. Already a ball-magnet, Oliver upped his kick-to-handball ratio and hit the scoreboard more last season, making him both a more damaging player and more prolific fantasy scorer.
19. James Sicily (ZANO)
James Sicily played less of a swingman role and more of a permanent defender last season, reflected by his positional status as a pure defender. The move proved a positive one from a fantasy perspective, upping his average by more than 20 points on the year prior, pushing him to an AFL Fantasy average of 95.5. If he becomes the primary kick-in beneficiary at Hawthorn…watch out.
20. Taylor Adams (ARCHIE)
Adams averaged under 100 AFL Fantasy points for the first time since 2014 last season. Following a career-high year in 2017, where the midfield brute averaged 114.6, with a 30-5-6 disposal-mark-tackle combination, Adams struggled with injury and form in 2018. Some fantasy coaches are expecting a return to his best this season despite the addition of Beams; encouraged by his hot finish last season. Adams averaged 105.8 AFL Fantasy points following teammate Adam Treloar’s injury in round 15.
21. Isaac Heeney (ARCHIE)
The blonde bombshell is the 3rd forward chosen behind the two clear top-dogs. Heeney was slightly below his career-best numbers of 2017, with concussion to blame to some extent – exiting early in round 15 with symptoms, then missing the following week. Whether or not the effects had further impact is purely speculation. However, following his return, Heeney averaged 86.9, while averaging 98.4 before the concussion. With Dan Hannebery’s exit in the offseason, Heeney should spend major minutes as a midfielder, where his scoring has a chance to take a descent bump.
22. Josh Dunkley (ZANO)
One of the more polarizing topics in the fantasy community entering 2019 is whether Josh Dunkley retains his spot in the Bulldogs midfield. Entrenched in the guts from round 14 last season, Dunkley pumped out an average of 108.6 AFL Fantasy points for his final 10 games. Should he retain this role, Dunkley could be in the frame to be the top averaging forward of 2019.
23. Alex Witherden (WARNIE)
In just his 3rd year of AFL football, plenty is expected of Alex Witherden in the fantasy footy community for season 2019. Having already established himself as an elite kick out of defence, the 20-year-old is the perfect fantasy defender: racking up plenty of disposals with a high kick-to-handball ratio, while also being entrusted as the primary kick-in option at the Lions. Excluding his injury effected 15 in round 21 verse the Suns, Witherden averaged 91.7 AFL Fantasy points in 2018, with the kick-in rules projected to benefit him significantly.
24. Angus Brayshaw (DOS)
Brayshaw could be anything this season. After playing VFL in Round 1 last year – racking up 27 disposals, 6 tackles, and 104 AFL Fantasy points – he was then emergency twice, before finally breaking into the Demons team. The rest is history. After a slow start in his first 3 games, Brayshaw averaged 112.4 AFL Fantasy points from round 7, playing every game and finishing 3rd in the Brownlow medal. If he stays healthy and avoids (or can cope with) a tag, he will be a top fantasy prospect, regardless of his pure midfield status this season.
25. Sebastian Ross (CAM)
Following his second straight 100+ AFL Fantasy scoring season, Seb Ross enters the season having finished scorching hot in 2018. The 25-year-old Saint stormed home to average 126.3 AFL Fantasy points in his final 6 games of the season. Considering Ross’s 2018 AFL Fantasy average of 107.3,
he is perhaps being underappreciated at this point in the draft. However, drafters may be wary of the Saints midfield mix with the arrival of Hannebery and perhaps also the ‘Alan Richardson Factor’.
26. Max Gawn (CHRISTIAN)
The second ruck off the board falls all the way to the 3rd round at pick 26. The fear of a Brayden Preuss partnership clearly has fantasy coaches spooked. Gawn’s 111.3 AFL Fantasy average of 2018 was behind only Brodie Grundy for best ruck in the competition. Should ‘The Preuss Effect’ be the same as ‘The Cox Effect’ on Grundy in 2018, Gawn’s sliding in drafts could provide huge value to the coach who goes bang first.
27. Toby McLean (BIG COX)
It was a tale of two halves for Toby McLean in 2018. Before the Bulldogs round 12 bye, McLean was averaging 105.6 AFL Fantasy points. Following an AC joint injury in round 13, McLean still played every game, but seemed hampered by the shoulder, averaging only 83.4 post-bye. McLean currently has an unbroken streak of improvement in every season, upping his AFL Fantasy average by +11.5, +13, and +9 in each respective season since being drafted at pick 26 in the 2014 AFL draft. Should he continue this rise, he could be one of only a few forwards to average over 100 in 2019.
28. Adam Treloar (STEVE)
Treloar was the 7th best midfielder by AFL Fantasy average in 2018, clocking in at 108.5 per game. Treloar injured both of his hamstring tendons against Carlton in Round 15 last season, requiring surgery and missing the remainder of Collingwood’s regular season games. Returning in the finals, Treloar put in a gutsy performance in the Grand Final loss to West Coast, finishing with 26 disposals, 11 tackles and 115 AFL Fantasy points. To consider Treloar an injury risk for this year might be fair. However, prior to 2018, the 25-year-old had been a remarkably durable fantasy stud, averaging over 103 AFL Fantasy points and playing 20 games or more from 2014-17.
29. Dayne Beams (JONO)
Another Collingwood midfielder and 4th overall Pie selected in the top 30. The Pies add another 100+ averaging player to their already impressive crop of 4 from 2018 (Grundy, Treloar, Sidebottom, Pendlebury). Beams arrival at the Pies brings with it big questions concerning the ‘mouths to feed’ concept in Nathan Buckley’s midfield mix. Beams, who turns 29 in February, is still in his prime – having racked up the 2nd most amount of disposals in his career in 2018. Beams may very well exceed his 105.8 AFL Fantasy average of last season in the Pies high fantasy scoring game plan.
30. Dustin Martin (STATESMAN)
There’s a general consensus in the fantasy community that Dusty will be in for a big bounce back in 2019. Martin put up just 92.9 AFL Fantasy points last year, his lowest average since the 2012 season. With a slight tweak in game plan expected with the arrival of Tom Lynch, Martin should spend more time in the middle – with the potential to up his fantasy output to close to what he produced in 2017, where he averaged 113.6 AFL Fantasy points.
|31. S. Sidebottom||41. L. Franklin||51. D. Mundy||61. M. Bontempelli|
|32. M. Duncan||42. B Gibbs||52. J. Howe||62. G. Ablett|
|33. C. Wingard||43. S. Pendlebury||53. L. Ryan||63. S. Martin|
|34. N. Fyfe||44. Z. Williams||54. D. Heppell||64. N. Newman|
|35. S. Menegola||45. Z. Tuohy||55. M. Hurley||65. T. Goldstein|
|36. T. Kelly||46. J. Crisp||56. T. Lynch|
|66. L. Shiels|
|37. J. Billings||47. T. Greene||57. J. Steele||67. T. Nankervis|
|38. D. Zorko||48. R. Sloane||58. J. Steven||68. T. Taranto|
|39. J. Westhoff||49. L. Parker||59. H. Shaw||69. T. McDonald|
|40. S. Hurn||50. L. Hunter||60. R. Gray||70. O. Wines|
|71. C. Mills||81. D. Shiel||91. M. Walters||101. J. Viney|
|72. M. Murphy||82. M. Robinson||92. C. Ward||102. S. Jacobs|
|73. J. Selwood||83. T. Boak||93. J. Redden||103. R. Burton|
|74. B. Smith||84. C. Petracca||94. T. Phillips||104. B. Williams|
|75. B. Fiorini||85. J.P. Kennedy||95. D. Zaharakis||105. S. Savage|
|76. B. Crouch||86. J. De Goey||96. T. Rockliff||106. W. Milera|
|77. J. Witts||87. B. Acres||97. A. Hall||107. D. Roberton|
|78. B. Houli||88. J. O’Meara||98. E. Curnow||108. M Kreuzer|
|79. J. Lyons||89. J. Gunston||99. S. Higgins||109. T. Langdon|
|80. J. Short||90. C. Salem||100. J. Hogan||110. D. Prestia|
|111. L. Weller||121. L. Shuey||131. K. Langford|
|112. T. Hawkins||122. M. Suckling||132. H. Hartlett|
|113. J. Webster||123. J. Martin||133. D. Hannebery|
|114. A. McGrath||124. J. Hopper||134. M. Wallis|
|115. K. Lambert||125. Tom Lynch (RICH)||135. J. Ziebell|
|116. B. Parfitt||126. B. Cunnington||136. J. Harbrow|
|117. H. McCluggage||127. T. Cotchin||137. O. Fantasia|
|118. B. Ellis||128. D. Parish||138. J. Worpel|
|119. E. Langdon||129. J. Harmes||139. T. Stewart|
|120. N. Wilson||130. K. Kolodjashnij||140. J. Johannisen|
|141. J. Polec||151. J. Gresham||161. P. Hanley||171. S-P-S (Carl)|
|142. D. Thomas||152. S. Collins||162. I. Smith||172. D. Howe|
|143. M. Hibberd||153. S. Lycett||163. J. Cripps||173. J. McVeigh|
|144. C. Daniel||154. J. Caddy||164. L. McDonald||174. R. Clarke|
|145. H. Crozier||155. L.Dahlhaus||165. P. Dow||175. N. Vlastuin|
|146. B. Maynard||156. D. Tyson||166. J. Berry||176. D. Houston|
|147. B. Ebert||157. C. Curnow||167. J. Pittard||177. A. Brayshaw|
|148. J.J. Kennedy||158. N. Jones||168. J. Cameron||178. D. Swallow|
|149. B. McEvoy||159. R. Lobb||169. J. Riewoldt||179. Z. Fisher|
|150. A. Miles||160. D. Sheed||170. C. Sinclair||180. L. Breust|
Let us know what you think our mock draft!
Which picks surprised you? Who got a late steal? Who “won” the draft?