Home > AFL > AFL Season Preview Pt. 1- No Need for Tanking

AFL Season Preview Pt. 1- No Need for Tanking

In 1997, the Port Adelaide Power came into the AFL for the first time. Since then, there has not been a season in which there has been a greater amount of change than the one in which we are about to embark – Season 2011. Since the end of last season, a hoodoo has been broken, a teenage girl has set out to destroy both her and the football community’s reputation, and a cashed up new kid has arrived on the block. The Gold Coast Suns will be the talking point of the season, but when the games get under way, the turbulent off season will be all but forgotten. How will your team fare? In this article and over the next few days, I’ll be letting you know. Bring on the footy!

 

These guys will unfortunately struggle throughout the season. Sure, they will cause the odd upset, and some young guys will impress us with their flair and talent. But the exuberance of youth alone will not be enough to make a real impact in 2011.

 

17th – Gold Coast Suns (Premiership odds @ TAB Sportsbet- $81)

Sure, they’re stacked with possibly the most talented list in the AFL, combining countless high draft picks with the recruitment of established guns, including Gary Ablett, Michael Rischitelli, Jarrod Harbrow, Jarred Brennan, Campbell Brown, Daniel Harris, Josh Fraser and Nathan Krakour. The problem is that the rest of their side is 19-20 years old, and will struggle with the rigors of a full AFL season. This year won’t be their year, but look out for them in the next 3-4 seasons.

Dreamteam Buys- Hard to go past Ablett as an out and out superstar, but youngsters David Swallow, Sam Day and Dion Prestia look set for lots of game time and are sure to score well.

 

16th – Port Adelaide Power ($101)

Unfortunately, the only thing looking good for Port over the past couple of years is their new jumpers. They lack the firepower to really compete with the top teams, although on their day their passion and commitment has seen them cause some upsets. Could be a long season for the Port fans.

Dreamteam Buys- Despite being an unfashionable player, Kane Cornes has a history of racking up big scores. Travis Boak is another who has been touted as a future Brownlow medallist, and is good value as well.

 

15th – Brisbane Lions ($101)

I don’t think that Michael Voss’ men could have had a more disrupted pre-season. They were heavily criticised for their recruitment before this season, but in truth 2010 was cruelled by injury. The main strike power was going to be the twin towers up front of Jonathan Brown and Brendan Fevola, but obviously the latter won’t be at the club in 2011. This is a huge hit to a side that needs to kick goals every time they go inside forward 50, because goodness knows it won’t be down there much. There is a huge upside to some of their youngsters, but they still need a few years under their belts to become genuine contenders.

Dreamteam Buys- If you are looking for established players who you can count on, you could do much worse than Simon Black. But if you are looking to take a bit of a punt on youth, Daniel Rich, Tom Rockliff, Jack Redden and Jared Polec look to be in line for plenty of game time in 2011.

 

14th – West Coast Eagles ($101)

Whilst 14th place isn’t really something teams strive to achieve, for the Eagles it would be a good result, especially after the disaster that was season 2010. There has been a heavy focus on youth, and the combination of the kids, along with the remaining premiership stars from 2006, will, if nothing else, provide some ray of hope for West Coast fans.

Dreamteam Buys In years gone by, Dean Cox was the first picked in everyone’s side. After being troubled by injury recently, he is no longer the premier ruckman in the competition, but you could definitely do worse. An injury free Daniel Kerr is also worth a look, as are youngsters Andrew Gaff and Jack Darling.

 

13th – Richmond Tigers ($81)

The Tigers fans have had to endure more over the past 20 years than any other side, and I don’t think things are about to change too dramatically. Sure, there was huge hype last season, but let’s be realistic – they won only 6 games and had the worst percentage in the league. You don’t go from those numbers to playing finals footy in just 1 season. There will be improvement, but hold your excitement for another couple of years Tiger fans.

Dreamteam Buys- In a team stacked with young guns, inconsistency is always an issue. Not so for Brett Deledio, who played 22 games last year and looks to have finally lived up to his “Number 1 Draft Pick” hype. Jack Riewoldt will also take plenty of marks and kick truckloads of goals in 2011. If the salary cap is tight, Reece Conca is well and truly worth a look.

 

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That’s it for the first of my season previews… Is your team here? Let me know why they wont be! I’ll be back again in a few days time with Pt. 2.

The Phantom

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