Crouch-ing Crow. Hidden Premium?
The brother of Brad arrived at the Crows at pick 23 in the 2013 national draft after absolutely dominating, and I mean DOMINATING, in a fairly ordinary North Ballarat TAC cup side. Over 7 games he averaged 37 disposals (16 contested), 7 clearances and 5 tackles. However, leather poisoning a broken hand stuffed his U18 championship for Vic Country, managing 42 touches over 2 games.
His first two seasons at the Crows yielded 23 games and a measly one Supercoach ton. Overall, his average for those two years sat at 64.9. His brother Brad smashed his first two seasons at the club. It totalled 25 games, 10 tons and an average of 92. The comparisons between the two started to roll in, fair enough too, anyone with a brother or sister will have fond memories of growing up together and trying to get one up on them at every possible occasion. In fact Matt rocked up to the draft combine with a shiner after Brad had clocked him one. Matt had let down younger siblings everywhere, in most cases the youngest is so much hotter, talented, and just generally an all round better human (Hi sis!)
2016 looked to heading the same way for the younger Crouch with only 2 tons up until the bye. The it all started to click when he was finally moved into his preferred inside mid position. 5 tons and only once under 80 from 10 games. If he stays in the coalface for 2017 he will be a very relevant midfielder.
|Games last season:||20|
|Average last season:||92.4|
|100+ games last season:||7 (season high: 144)|
|Sub 80 games last season:||8 (season low: 51)|
|Price range last season:||$368k (round 1) – 493k (round 23)|
|Missed games last season:||
I can’t stress this enough, Matt Crouch needs to be at the foot of big Sauce Jacobs to be a worthwhile pick for Supercoachers. Rounds 1-12 he was just another cog in Adelaide’s midfield, after the bye he was shifted to the inside man.
The obligatory “Scott Thompson will spend less time in the midfield” news article was released in late December. I think there’s been one for the last few years now. Looking at the numbers though ScottyT did spend less time on ground in the second half of the year.
You’ll notice the decline of Thompson’s TOG% didn’t see a spike in Matt’s. This leads me to another risk factor, the guy has a similar aerobic capacity to a pack a day smoker. He isn’t the quickest guy going around either. It’s a bit of catch-22 scenario, this guy is an absolute magnet when he’s on the park but he’s only playing 70% of the game.
Your classic breakout player, albeit a bit on the pricy side for a true breakout contender. Crouch gets so much it that he often pushes 30 possessions a game. His d.e% of 73 is very good for an inside mid. A 110+ average is very gettable for him as long as he spends all of his time on the inside. He’s a wasted talent playing outside the packs.
- Has the knack of a stoppage specialist to find the ball and make space
- Rarely dropped below double-figure contested possessions in 2016
- Will benefit from Scott Thompson spending less time in the guts
- Doesn’t hit the scoreboard or take a lot of marks.
- Handball happy
- Has had problems with his foot. Especially in 2015
Matt Crouch is a died in the wool KISS fanatic – Keep It Simple, Stupid – His game is contested possessions and tackles. That’s it. There’s nothing wrong with that, it’s a game that is very hard to stop even with a heavy opposition tag.
The verdict on midfielders is so hard because we have premium talent available at the top end and in the mid price range. Matt may find his way into your side as you play around with mid structures but he is not ready yet to warrant a starting place in your side.
Community Series BOG – KEV. A brilliant, insightful article mate. Jock
|This article has been penned as part of the Jock Reynolds Community Series, where anyone from within our proud community can have their say in front of their peers. These men and women have displayed the spirit of togetherness, positivity and community that we value significantly.|
Matt Crouch Community Poll: