Category: The Premium

The Premium: Defenders

To celebrate the beginning of the official DreamTeam season we’ve brought back a favourite article from last year to kick off the season. The Premium (Defenders)

Knowing what Premiums to select can be the biggest battle in AFL DreamTeam. You need to get these players into your starting side as soon as possible to maximise the points you score each round. Below is a look at 6 Defenders that could potentially be your final six premiums by seasons end.

Pearce Hanley (DEF) – $467,300 (DT) – Hanley proved to be a game breaker and ultra consistent over the past 3 seasons with averages of 80, 83 and 86 despite being tagged heavily in 2013. Hanley has proven himself as a capable midfielder who can play in defence and also in attack. He has the ability to beat his opponent one on one which makes it incredibly difficult to nullify his influence on the game. Look at Hanley as a lock in your defence in all Fantasy games this season.

Ricky Henderson

Ricky Henderson (Def) $435100 (AFLF) & $438,600 (DT) – Despite strong interest from Collingwood and reports he wanted to return home to Victoria, Henderson will line up again for the Crows and looms as one of the most fascinating players in 2014. From round 14-20 was the premier defender in fantasy football, racking up possessions and looked to have found a home on Adelaide half back line. A jump of 29 points per game to an average of 80 in 2013 makes his a more expensive proposition. The Crows began to show greater form in the latter half of the season with Henderson finding a home at Half-Back. Despite the doubts on Henderson’s body , he is worth considering if he can stay fit and out on the park.

Andrew Walker (DEF) $473,700 (DT) –  Walker had an elite season with a permanent move to the backline allowing the  former number 2 pick to show the immense potential we had only seen in glimpse.  an improvement of 13 points per game in 2013 to 87 places Walker in the premium category for defenders this season. Walker should be strongly considered as one of your first locks of 2014.

Sam Mitchell (DEF) $521,800 (DT) – Despite continually decreasing scores from 112 p.p.g. in 2011, 102 in 2012 and 96 in 2013, Mitchell is prime fantasy value, being moved into defence. As a Defender Mitchell ranks the second highest value behind McVeigh. Mitchell has the ability to average 100 plus per game, however his real strength is his consistency. Mitchell should be one of the first selected in your sides this season.

Jarrad McVeigh

Jarrad McVeigh (DEF) $534,100 (DT) – With a move to the half back flank to cover injuries (Shaw) and retirement (Mattner) McVeigh highlighted his ability to read the play and be the go through player in the Swans defence.  McVeigh averaged 98 AFLF points per game, the highest of any classified defender in 2014. At only 28, McVeigh is in the prime of his career and should be the first picked in all fantasy sides in 2014.

Garrick Ibbotson

Garrick Ibbotson (DEF) $504,200 (DT) – Despite playing only 13 games last season Ibbotson averaged 92.31 and became a versatile link player behind the ball for the Dockers. Ibbotson average 22 points per game greater in 2013 and was ranked number 1 in the club for marks. He was also ranked in the top 5 for both contested and uncontested ball. Ibbotson was also a great reader of the play, ranking as the number one interceptor for his position in the AFL. If, and it is a big IF! Ibbotson can stay fit he will be a popular selection in peoples Defence in 2014.

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The Premium: Forwards

The Premium: Forwards

Will Buddy remain the top DreamTeam Forward in 2013?
Will Buddy remain the top DreamTeam Forward in 2013?

Knowing what Premiums to select can be the biggest battle in AFL DreamTeam. You need to get these players into your starting side as soon as possible to maximise the points you score each round. Below is a look at 6 Forwards that could potentially be your final six premiums by seasons end.

#NOTE: For this task I have excluded all the dual position Ruck/Forwards (Cox, Roughead, Ryder, Naitanui).

Premium Forwards

1) Steve Johnson – $501,700
Johnson, despite missing the first game, in my opinion is the best forward option in AFL Fantasy: DreamTeam. Johnson acknowledged while on commentarty during the Cat’s first tri-series game that he has spent the preseason training with the midfield group and expects to play 80% Midfield/20% Forward this season. Last year despite being substituted with a score of 1 against the Crows in round 18, he averaged 97.4 ppg.

Potential Average: 105 ppg

2) Tom Rockliff – $481,700
After spending most of the season as a forward. A position he played as a junior, his average fell from 112 to 93 with the change of role. With the return of Johnathan Brown, Rockliff should move back into the midfield and become a point scoring machine in 2013.

Potential Average: 105 ppg

3) Lance “Buddy” Franklin – $521,300
Franklin is the highest scoring key position player in the game. His ability to play up the ground and find space makes it almost impossible for defenders to restrict his output. This allows him to regularly score well, unlike many other key position forwards. Despite only playing 16 games because of injury, Buddy still managed to be an effective DreamTeam selection last season. In the last 3 seasons he has averaged 101.3 (12′), 101.6 (11′) and 99.4 (10′). Last season we saw a drop in output from Travis Cloke who was in contract negotiations. Franklin unlike Cloke should handle this pressure and his game should be unaffected.

Potential Average: 100 ppg

4) Dayne Zorko – $487,800
Zorko was outstanding last season, coming in mid-year at a rookie price and scoring higher than most of our premiums. His defensive pressure between half forward and centre is almost unmatched in the Lions side. He also can accumulate the footy and score goals. The perfect DreamTeam combination. Zorko also averaged 6 tackles a games last season. Thats 24 points just from defensive work. He in my opinion is worth every cent of his $487,800 price tag. Jump on early!

Potential Average: 95 ppg

5) Dale Thomas – $480,000
Thomas average dropped last season as he fell from 103 to 93. He was overtaken in the Magpies midfield by Beams and Sidebottom. His best game of the season was against the Gold Coast in round 10, with Swan out and Pendlebury injured early Thomas accumulated the ball all day and scored 133. One has to wonder whether Thomas who reportedly had a close relationship with Mick Malthouse struggled to deal with the loss of his coach, or whehter the natural progression of the Magpies younger midfielders spread the possession of the ball across the team. Regardless even at last seasons average Thomas is a top 6 forward in 2013.

Potential Average: 95 ppg

6) Mitch Robinson -$478,600
The Tasmanian native backed up his impressive 2011 average of 92.2 in 2012 with a similar average of 92.8. Robinson scrapes into my top 6 only because at his very best he is one of the highest forward scorers. Robinson is a yo-yo player. He does have extremely good games where he can score highly, 146 against Melbourne in Round 9 but also lows 39 against Essendon in round 21. In total last season in his 18 games he scored 9 times over 100 but also 5 times under 68 including 3 games under 54. This is due to his role in the team. He can be used as a defensive lockdown player at times where he will play an effective role that is not advantageous to DreamTeam scoring. My advice is to watch his preseason and see whether Mick plays him in the lockdown role. If he is free to play his natural game he is a ball magnet and lock in most sides.

Potential Average: 92 ppg

The Premium: The Elite 8 Midfielders

The Premium: The Elite 8 Midfielders

Midfield Premo

The midfield is the most important part of any Fantasy side, as it is the area on the field where players generally score higher scores. These are the names you should be looking to get into your side as soon as possible.

My recommendation would be to start with at least 4 of these players. Most will begin the year with between 4-5 premiums this season as there are quality rookie priced players; Crouch, O’Meara (HYPE LIST), Wines, Viney, Hrovat, Kane Mitchell and not forgetting the more expensive rookies in Whitfield, O’Rourke and Toumpas.

The Old Tried and Tested
Dane Swan – $688,100
Gary Ablett – $642,500
Matthew Boyd – $593,700

These three players have been a regular fixture in our DreamTeams over the last few years and are regular accumulators of the ball.

Dane Swan is one of the games all time best ball magnets, he finds the ball where ever he goes. Last season he increased his average to 133.5 ppg up from 120.9 ppg. The biggest question mark over Swan is whether he can maintain that average with the return of Luke Ball from injury and Scott Pendlebury playing a full season. While he might not average as high in 2013, you cannot dispute his ability. Priced at $688,100 he is the most expensive player in the game. A loss of $50,000 for the year is nothing in the scheme of a season. Swan is a LOCK captain choice almost every week and not selecting him may put you behind from the very beginning.

Gary Ablett continues to show why he is considered the best midfielder in the game, even in a developing side, racking up more possessions and DreamTeam points in 2012 than his first season at the Suns in 2011. Last season he averaged 124.8 ppg up from 112.1 ppg. Expect Ablett to continue to average a similar number this season as the Suns develop midfield support around Ablett.

Gary Ablett 2012 Season Highlights.

Matthew Boyd played every game last season, the same as he did in 2011 and continued to average highly. Over the last three seasons he has averaged 115.1 ppg (2010), 116 (2011), 115.2 (2012). The only negatives surrounding Boyd is he is now 30 an age where DreamTeam Coaches begin to become weary of players. Boyd can be handball happy as evident in his last five games where he had a higher handball to kick ratio. However he still scored well averaging 114.6 ppg with no score below 100.

Returning Warriors
Scott Pendlebury – $568,700
Marc Murphy – $522,000

Despite missing four games with injury mid-year Scott Pendlebury recaptured his ball winning ability, collecting over 30 possessions in 8 of his final 11 games. During this 11 game period from Round 16 to the Preliminary Final, Pendlebury averaged of 114.1 almost 4 ppg higher than his season average of 110.3 ppg.

Marc Murphy started the season in promising fashion scoring 5 100+ scores in a row to start the season and was averaging 109 ppg before his round 8 collarbone injury suffered in a contest against Patrick Dangerfield in a ferocious contest on the ball (see below). Murphy returned in Round 16 and was consistent throughout the rest of the season, with two standout games against Richmond in Round 18 collecting 36 touches and 113 DreamTeam points and in round 21 against Essendon collecting 37 touches, 2 goals, 9 marks and 6 tackles for a season high DreamTeam score of 163. Murphy ended the season averaging 100.8 ppg, well below his 2011 average of 111.4 ppg. Now priced at $522,00 he need to be one of the first selected players in your 2013 squad.

The New Blood
Dayne Beams – $599,400
Trent Cotchin – $570,200
Patrick Dangerfield – $525,000

Dayne Beams had a breakout year in 2012, moving from a half forward role into a more prominent midfield role. He was only one of two players, along with Gary Ablett, to kick over 25 goals (27 goals) and average over 25 possessions (27.33 possessions).

His consistency was rewarded winning his first Copeland Trophy (Collingwood Best and Fairest) as well as the 3AW AFL Player of the Year award and was named in the 2012 All Australian team. He finished the season averaging 116.4 Dream Team ppg, up from 101.6 the season before. Beams is a goal kicking ball accumulator. The perfect combination for a DreamTeam player. Even at $599,400 you should lock him into your starting side.

Trent Cotchin had his best year to date, finishing tied for second in the Brownlow medal with Sam Mitchell. Cotchin increased his average from 93.6 ppg in 2011 to 110.4 ppg last season. This included scoring over 100 DreamTeam points in his last 10 games and averaging 129.75 ppg in his final four games of the season.

Expect similar numbers again in 2013 with Cotchin becoming one of the elite players of the competition.

Patrick Dangerfield finally became the consistent player we had been hoping to see. With blistering speed (see below) and ferocity at the contest Dangerfield joined the elite of the competition in 2012. 1st in the AFL for hardball gets and 2nd for contested ball, Dangerfield was almost unbeatable in a contest. His season was acknowledged with his first All Australian award and finishing second in the Crows Best and Fairest behind Scott Thompson.

Dangerfield is a typical SuperCoach player, but with an increased ability to win the uncontested ball outside, he has the potential to become one of the highest scoring DreamTeam players in 2013.

Those unlucky not to make it into my Elite 8 were Kieran Jack, Brett Stanton, Toby Greene and Nate Fyfe who are all on the bubble of becoming elite AFL DreamTeam players.

ppg = Points Per Game

Who do you disagree with. Who do you think will be the elite 8 by the end of the season? Comment, Tweet/Re-Tweet and Follow this blog for regular updates.

The Premium: 6 Top Defenders

The Premium: 6 Top Defenders

Knowing what Premiums to select can be the biggest battle in AFL DreamTeam. You need to get these players into your starting side as soon as possible to maximise the points you score each round. Below is a look at 6 Defenders that could potentially be your final six premiums by seasons end.

Don’t forget to vote below for who you will be starting with.

Defenders Premium

1) Brendon Goddard

When he is at the top of his game he is arguably one of the best and most influential players on the ground. The move to Essendon should reenergise BJ and allow him to reach the heights of St.Kilda’s consecutive Grand Final appearances. With more time spent in the midfield and a renewed optimism, BJ should be the first player picked in your side in 2013.
Potential Average – 100-105

2) Jack Grimes
Despite a perceived poor year by many, Grimes grew throughout the year as Captain and had his most consistent season to date. Only missing 1 game throughout the year, Grimes averaged a career high 92 ppg*. More impressively in his final 8 games of the season Grimes average 104.5 ppg* with a low of 81 in round 18 against North Melbourne and a high of 135 in Round 17 against Port Adelaide.

Melbourne according to Champion Data has the easiest draw of all 18 clubs in season 2013 and this must be strongly considered hen selecting any player. Grimes will step into the midfield more in 2013 and his numbers should remain solid, making him an ideal selection this season.
Potential Average – 95-100

3) Bryce Gibbs

After playing the season as a defender and playing the lock down role on some of the best mid-sized forwards, Gibbs averaged decreased to 92 ppg*. In 2011 Gibbs average 107 ppg* and was influential in delivering the ball inside attack. With Mick Malthouse at the Blues, you can expect a larger group of midfielders rotating through the middle, providing Gibbs the chance to show why he was the number 1 pick in the ’06 draft.
Potential Average – 95-100

4) Dyson Heppell

Now entering his 3rd season Heppell will be expected to play a larger role rotating though the midfield. Heppell is held in high regard at the Bombers finishing 2nd in their club best and fairest.

In the second half of the season he was the forth most used Essendon player in the middle. With the added support of Brendon Goddard and being surrounded by Brownlow Medalist Jobe Watson and Ball Magnet Brent Stanton, Heppell may well become the free man in the midfield and will allowed to play his natural game.
Potential Average – 90-95

5)Beau Waters
Waters demonstrated that he is not only hard at a contest, but can also be a major ball winner out of defence. Ranking 7th in the AFL for intercept marks, Waters has an ability to read the play and find space to receive and use the ball effectively. In 2012 he averaged 91.6 ppg* and is likely to repeat that again in 2013
Potential Average – 87-92

6) Grant Birchall

Birchall is a consistent high scorer in AFL DreamTeam due to his consistence, achieving over 17 possessions per game in the regular season. Hawthorns movement from defence utilises his ability to find space behind the ball and become a link in the chain moving the ball from defence to attack. However he is also adept at intercepting the ball and generating scoreboard impact on the rebound.

After being awarded the All-Australian half-back position in 2012 there is no reason to doubt Birchall achieving the same consistent results in 2013.
Potential Average – 85-90

ppg* = Points Per Game.

Disagree? Who should be in and who should be out? Comment, Like and Follow below.

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The Premium: Ruck Ranking

The Premium: Ruck Ranking

The Ruck

The Ruck can be a major problem in AFL Fantasy Elite. Mid-Price Mayhem is not an option when it comes to the Ruck. My advice is get a quality Ruckman ASAP if you are playing need to select TWO ruck men in your game. If you only need ONE and Cox and Maric are gone, wait til the later rounds, good ruckman will still be available.

The difference between having a Dean Cox scoring an average between 90-110 points per game in comparison to a lesser Ruckman whose average could variation between 30-90 with a mean of 70 points points per game can cost you around 30 points per game.

Ranking Ruckman:
1) Dean Cox
– Despite his age he is still the premium guy. His ability to find the ball is phenomenal and his ability to take a strong mark at either end of the ground will allow him to have continued longevity.
Potential average – 95-105

2) Ivan Maric – The big mullet was amazing last season, coming out of the shadows of ‘Big Sauce’ Sam Jacobs at Adelaide and down to Punt Road. He leads the line at the Tigers and with no obvious competitor for his number 1 ruck role, he should get plenty of game time. With the natural development of the Tigers side Maric should be able to maintain his average of 98.1 ppg* from last season.
Potential average – 90-100

3) Nic Naitanui – Last season we began to see Nic take the game head on and produce moments of sheer brilliance. His season was controversially recognised with an AA ruck position, but the numbers don’t lie and the time he spent in the middle he was clearly the dominant big man. He is physically one of the best Ruckman the game has ever seen. Despite offseason surgery Nic is worth the risk early as he may prove to be a game changer later in the season.
Potential average – 85-110

4) Todd Goldstein – Despite his incredibly disappointing 24 against Fremantle in Round 22 last year, he has shown that as a solo ruckman he can be one of the best in the game. With Mcintosh down at the Cattery it is now time for Goldstein to replicate his form of 2011 where he averaged 99.3 ppg*.
Potential average – 85-95

5) Shane Mumford – A surprise at 5 YES. Will many people disagree, YES. But he is worth the risk. Injury ended his 2012 first with a freak infection in his back and then an injury to his knee. Mumford sat forlornly on the bench after being subbed on Grand Final day, but the joy of a premiership and time to recover over preseason should have him refreshed and ready to go come round 1. With Kurt Tippett also at the Swans, Mumford will have more of a chance to float forward and rest on the bench, instead of carrying the burden of the entire Swans truckload. Two ruckman does not necessarily mean less points. West Coast combination is a prime example.

Others to strongly consider: Roughead, McIntosh, Ryder, Giles, Jacobs, McEvoy, Minson and Kreuzer.

Cheaper options to consider: Matthew Leunberger (Hype List), Zac Smith (No Hickey), Cameron Pedersen and Stefan Martin.

Ruckman to avoid: Aaron Sandilands (Injury Reliability), Ben Hudson (Won’t play enough games), Trent West (replaced by McIntosh), Mike Pyke (Kurt Tippett to play second ruck).

ppg* = Points Per Game.

Comment, Like and Tweet below. Come back tomorrow when we look at Positional Rankings for Defenders, Midfield and Forwards