I’m sure those who owned Luke Shuey in 2017 had high hopes for him after finishing 2016 with an average of 105.6 SCPoints, which was 17th best in the AFL. He cost a pretty penny to start the season, with a $574,500 price tag, but he failed to replicate his scores, falling to his lowest average since 2013, a major disappointment for his owners I’m sure.
However, 2018 is shaping up to be a big year for the Eagles, there’s a lot of questions about how they will perform, especially in the midfield, but that just means there’s the potential for a player like Luke Shuey to take his game to new heights, both on the field and in fantasy football.
SHUEY: THE FACTS
|2018 Facts||$529,100 MID|
|2017 Games||21 (23 including finals)|
|2017 Average||96.2 (98.6 including finals)|
|2017 100+ Scores||7 (9 including finals)|
|2017 Sub-80 scores||5|
|2017 Highs & Lows||High of 141, low of 53|
His general stats around the ground actually increased in 2017, but Shuey was down in two key areas for Supercoach. His contested possessions fell from 12.4 to 11 (though his uncontested possessions increased from 13.8 to 15.5, a career high) and his clearances fell to their lowest since 2014, winning just 5.7 a game (he averaged 6.6 in 2016). It was the sub 80 scores that hurt him the most probably, recording just 2 in 2016, that rose as you can see above, while he also had 11 games of scores of 100+ in 2016.
There’s no denying the fact that Shuey can find the pill and with the retirements of Priddis and Mitchell, there’s going to be increased reliance on him to continue to be the driving force of the Eagles midfield.
He is also very unique in that he is a goal scoring midfielder, kicking 58 goals since 2014, which is the 8th highest of any permanent midfielder, while also having 131 score assists, which is behind just Eddie Betts and Robbie Gray in that time.
Even with the down year from 2016, he still rated as an elite midfielder by Champion Data. He also had 20+ disposals in all but 1 game last year, highlighting how consistent he is in finding the ball.
There isn’t a lot wrong with Shuey, other than his clangers, of which he ranked 16th in the AFL in 2017. It’s not a bad bad, but the only issue with him will be does he have what it takes to become a top 10 midfielder in Supercoach? Based on last years averages, he’d need to average at least 110 SCPoints to be a worthy selection.
Then there’s the potential worry that with so much midfield experience gone from the Eagles midfield that Shuey starts copping more attention from taggers in 2018. You would think Gaff may be given more of a look at than Shuey since he gets so much of the ball outside the contest, but it’s still something to consider.
Call me crazy, but I think he could be a worthy selection in 2018 if you’re lacking the funds to go for a big $580K+ midfielder. There will be more opportunity for him to do his work on the inside at worst he continues to hover around the 100 SCPoint average, so at worst he costs you one trade to sideways him to a fallen premium. Add in he’s in under 1% of teams at the moment and he’s a big POD who doesn’t have any huge downsides in picking him.
What do you think, Community? Anyone willing to take a chance on Shuey?