Decent rookie priced forwards were as rare as hens teeth last year
They had started out looking like a promising bunch of players. Well.. i’ll just come right out and say it. The rookie priced forward line options we had last year just ended up plain sucking. Jay Kennedy-Harris? You get the heck outta here, son. Gary Rohan? More like Gary Burnman.
But this year we’ve got a crop of players both young and old that look very promising indeed. We’ve got the experienced big and small options at the Cattery, the Demons next superstar in Hogan, as well as a few other options who have been in the system a few years, but haven’t played a ton of footy.
Click here for an updated watch list.
SUPERCOACH ROOKIE FORWARDS
Note: All players are sorted by price (lowest to highest) and then alphabetically by last name.
REAL POTENTIAL FOR ROUND 1 ACTION
Jesse Hogan – Melbourne – $130,400
Was always more of a Hollywood Hogan fan myself, but Jesse ain’t bad either. Missed most of 2014 with a back injury, but kicked 39 goals for the Casey Scorpions VFL side as an under-age player.
Mitch Clark – Geelong – $155,200
Joined the Cats after originally retiring from AFL football. Geelong Head Coach Chris Scott says;
“Yeah we do (think he will be ready to play Round 1). But I say it with some hesitation, but it’s so far away. NAB (Cup) is March 1. AFL Round 1 is April 6 for us so it’s a long way away, which is good for Mitch because he is coming from a long way back. He has had a number of issues he has needed to overcome but all of the indications are that Round 1 is a pretty good target for Mitch.”
Update 15/01 – Clark hurt his calf at training with Geelong Football Manager Steve Hocking saying “Mitch has been training incredibly well so far and whilst this injury is unfortunate we don’t believe it will be something that will hamper his build up to the start of the season.” Read Dexter’s analysis of Mitch Clark here.
Sam Blease – Geelong – $177,400
Signed by the Cats as a delisted free agent, former football manager Neil Balme says;
“We see Sam as a player who can bring pace as well as a great ability in front of goal,” Balme told the club website. We hope Sam can find more consistency in his game and become a regular face in our side next year.”
Christian Salem – $185,000
Spent most of his AFL time being subbed, so he didn’t rise too much in price. Melbourne Midfield Coach Ben Matthews says;
“It does take time for them to gel, but there’s no doubt we want the likes of Dom Tyson, who had a great season in 2014, to keep improving. Jack Viney is another we’re looking to keep improving along with our draftees from the previous couple of years, like Christian Salem and Dean Kent.”
Eli Templeton – $221,300
Fully recovered from his broken arm, Eli Templeton says about St Kilda Alan Richardson’s expectations on him;
“He wants to get me up the field a bit more where I have sort of been playing as a wingman, half-forward, but he wants me to play half-forward and pinch-hitting in the middle, which will be good so I can use my run on the outside.’’
MAY NOT PLAY ROUND 1, BUT MAY GET SOME EARLY GAMES
Caleb Daniel – Western Bulldogs – $117,300
Has been compared to Boomer Harvey and Tony Liberatore due to his diminutive size. Is physically ready to play AFL football, but has questions over his size. Tony Liberatore says;
“I’ve seen Caleb play in a couple of matches and I was very, very impressed with the way he played. I love hearing little guys getting up there and I’m very excited for Caleb. I want to see more small players come back and play AFL footy again, it’s wonderful. I can see him being a cult hero actually. He should be a really exciting prospect.”
Update 15/01 – It has been reported that Caleb Daniel has been impressive during the Bulldogs match simulation training, with Bulldogs Assistant Coach Steven King stating “Declan Hamilton is going really well and Caleb Daniel, I think, is ready to go, he’s played senior SANFL footy.” Could he be in line for a bump to Priority Watchlist? Read Pieman’s analysis of Caleb Daniel here.
Tom Lamb – West Coast Eagles – $117,300
Pick #32 for the Eagles, West Coast Head Coach Adam Simpson says about new recruits Duggan and Lamb;
“I think they’ve all got the ability to play senior football this year, which is really pleasing. I think you can tell a lot within the first few weeks about how they go about it and their maturity and I’m pleased with all of them. What I’m seeing is the ability to handle situations already that perhaps first-year players don’t normally handle, but it is a longer-term approach so I won’t be throwing them in the deep end. But at the same time if they’re ready to play we’ll play them.”
Jack Steele – GWS – $117,300
Has a month head start on the rest of the AFL draftees on pre-season training due to being an academy selection. GWS have never been afraid to throw a kid into the deep end of the pool straight away. Read General Soreness analysis of Jack Steel here.
Riley Knight – Adelaide – $123,900
Elite endurance and work rate, Knight finished equal 2nd in the Crows SANFL Best & Fairest count. Named in the Crows best in 7 of 18 games.
Daniel Markworth – St. Kilda – $123,900
Has recorded a PB in the 2km time trial and came 6th overall at the club. St Kilda Head of Football Chris Pelchen says;
“Daniel’s versatility as a player provides real flexibility to the team’s structure and we look forward to him achieving his senior debut with the Saints/ Despite obvious setbacks with injury during his first three years at the Saints, Daniel has been extremely professional and persistent in his application to AFL football – impressing both his teammates and coaches alike.”
Liam McBean – Richmond – $123,900
Showed good form in the VFL again last year, but has yet to make his AFL debut. Richmond Tigers VFL head Coach Tim Clarke says;
“Liam is one of the most talked about players people bring up when you’re talking about Richmond and the VFL program. He’s a good kid, Liam. He tries his hardest, but he didn’t have the year that was going to push him into senior level this year. We’re hoping that, over summer, he can do that, and if he can bring that expectation of that key forward to his game, he’s going to be pretty dangerous to match up on.”
Mason Shaw – Port Adelaide – $123,900
Was close to debuting last year, but obviously the recruitment of Paddy Ryder will put him back down the pecking order again. Could be competing with Butcher for a spot in the Powers forward line, but Butcher has been given his chances before.
James Sicily – Hawthorn – $123,900
Tough to break into the Hawks forward line, but he certainly looked impressive in the VFL Grand Final.
Jayden Laverde – Essendon – $127,300
Named as an Under-18 All-Australian. Touted as a potential Top-5 pick before the draft.
Patrick Karnezis – Collingwood – $133,500
Has had some injuries issues, mostly groin and hamstring problems. Kicked 31 goals at VFL level last year. Will need to have another big pre-season to be in the mix.
Kyle Langford – Essendon – $142,300
Drafted at pick #17 by the Bombers. Essendon Recruiting Manager Adrian Dodoro says;
“We wanted to get running height into our midfield and we saw two guys who have got the potential to be, without giving them labels, we think Langford has a bit of Nat Fyfe in him. He can mark overhead, we can isolate him forward, play him onball.”
Max Duffy – Fremantle – $142,400
Missed about half of 2014 with a shoulder injury, but debuted in Round 20. Fremantle may bring in some more younger players this year, so he could get a chance again.
Spencer White – St Kilda – $146,200
Played the final 2 games of 2014 for the Saints. Late season form in the VFL was encouraging, but scoring potential could be iffy.
Brandon Jack – Sydney – $150,500
Hit with the green vest in 7 of his 8 games last year. No point picking him if that happens again. His price this year would show you that.
Ahmed Saad – St Kilda – $151,100
Back with the Saints after serving an 18 month suspension. Will likely be in the mix for Round 1, but might be given time in the VFL to get back to speed first.
Orazio Fantasia – Essendon – $168,400
Debuted late last year, but hit with the sub vest in all 3 of his games. Still pretty lightly framed and might not be ready to rock and roll just yet. Check to see if he’s put on some beef over the preseason.
Nick Kommer – Essendon – $168,800
Played a fair bit in 2013, but missed all of 2014 with a knee injury. Essendon GM of Performance Neil Craig says
“It’s been a long road for Nick, but in the last fortnight he’s made real progress in that he’s now running, which is significant progress for him. It means now that we can start to get some better conditioning into him because he’s missed a lot of footy and a lot of training. He’s still got a way to go but at least everything is in a positive direction at the moment, and having been out for so long, it’s good for him to be able to get out there and sweat and push himself and start to test himself at training.”
Tim Membrey – St Kilda – $172,000
Picked up by the Saints as a delisted free agent. Came for the opportunity that the Saints can provide, question is will he do enough to beat out some other competition.
Jonathan Freeman – Collingwood – $173,300
Played the last 4 games of 2014 and showed some ability as a goal kicker against Collingwood.
Blaine Johnson – Carlton – $176,300
Debuted in 2014 playing 5 games. Carlton Football Operations Manager Andrew McKay says
“Blaine is a diligent young man who trains hard and obviously got his opportunity through long-term injuries to other players. Now that he has had a taste of senior football we’re confident he will be hungry for more and will continue to press his case for senior selection.”
Ben Lennon – Richmond – $180,400
Was given a few chances in the middle and end of 2014, but was usually started as the sub. Potential for more game time is definitely there for him this year.
Michael Apeness – Fremantle – $189,200
With Pav’s time coming to an end you’d think they’d make it a priority to get some game time into Apeness.
Timmy Sumner – Gold Coast – $191,700
Continued to be given a few games, but was subbed often. Still needs to find some more consistency to his game if he wants to be a constant threat to the 22.
Paul Ahern – GWS – $192,300
GWS are never scared to play some of the kids, but they have so many of them will they be able to play them all?
Colin Sylvia – Fremantle – $206,000
Poor first year for Sylvia at Freo, but he’s a senior player who may have just taken some time to adjust to the standards that are required out West.
Update – 20/01/2015 – Sylvia still hasn’t returned to full-time training after off-season ankle surgery. Fremantle general manager of football operations Chris Bond says;
“Colin has had an interrupted pre-season and has been training in the rehabilitation group. We expect Colin to be able to rejoin the main playing group in the not too distant future.”
Christian Petracca – $217,300
Drafted along with Angus Brayshaw, Melbourne GM of Football Operations Josh Mahoney says;
“To be able to bring in some experienced players takes a bit off pressure of the young players. It is good for the young guys not to have step straight in and play.”
Paddy McCartin – $222,300
The #1 pick in the draft, St Kilda Coach Alan Richardson says;
“Paddy is no certainty to play a lot of footy (in 2015). We will wait and see how he goes physically. If he trains well and performs strongly in the trial games he is a chance but if not that’s OK. He is here for the long term, not to win the Rising Star.”
MAYBE LATER ON
UNLIKELY TO PLAY ROUND 1, MAY GET GAMES LATER IN SEASON
Josh Clayton – $117,300
Jayden Foster – $117,300
Jack Lonie – $117,300
Mitchell McGovern – $117,300
Jaden McGrath – $117,300
Reece McKenzie – $117,300
Toby McLean – $117,300
Todd Elton – $123,900
Josh Hall – $123,900
Kieran Harper – $123,900
Mitch Harvey – $123,900
Louis Herbert – $123,900
Fraser McInnes – $123,900
Dallas Willsmore – $123,900
Simon Tunbridge – $131,700
Robbie Tarrant – $144,700
Liam Sumner – $155,900
Sam Grimley – $176,500
Peter Wright – $187,300
Brad Hartman – $188,100
Jack Hannath – $191,700
Jack Redpath – $204,300.
Tim O’Brien – $209,600
That’s all for now in terms of the forward rookies – I’ll update these rookie posts regularly throughout the preseason so keep the ear to the ground!
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Barron Von Crow
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