You don’t need me to do the talking here. We all know what’s at stake. Let’s get into the numbers.
Again, this week I’ll only be doing a top 10 and will be ignoring Tom Mitchell and Max Gawn letting me (and many others) down last week, so I fully expect all my top options to be terrible despite no evidence to the contrary.
1 – BRODIE GRUNDY
Plays Saturday, 1.45PM
I told you. I told you Grundy would set the world on fire in these past three games while Gawn fell to the Cox Curse. Somewhere in a darkened room, Dean Cox is in the middle of a pentagram surrounded by incense, chanting away. Grundy is flying. Port won’t have Ryder. He’d be a lock for 130 and a chance at 150.
He doesn’t have a great record against the Power, but he’ll get past it.
2 – JACK MACRAE
Plays Sunday, 1.10PM
He plays Carlton. He scored 150 last week. He bloody gun.
And before anyone asks, I’m not even remotely worried by an Ed Curnow run-with role. Curnow might even go to Hunter or the Bont. Macrae should be everyone’s captain this week with Grundy as VC.
3 – TOM MITCHELL
Plays Saturday, 7.25pm
I’m going to look past last week’s disappointment from Tom. He had a poor game with a heavy tag and he knows it – he took one for his team to get the win over the Cats. Unfortunately, that cost our team. He plays St Kilda this week, which means he could score rather well. Jack Steele has been going to players, but has been running with them as opposed to stopping them, so I’m not too worried.
Also, Titch returns to Eithad for the first time since scoring 192 there a few weeks ago.
4 – PATRICK DANGERFIELD
Plays Saturday, 2.10PM
Slapped me in the face for suggesting Tom Mitchell was a better selection than him last week and by the power of Murphy’s Law, I’ve put Tom Mitchell above him yet again to lock in another 160. Playing a Fyfe-less, Sandilands-less Freo at home, if there was ever a time for Danger to have a day out as Geelong hunt desperately for finals, this is it. His mate Gary Ablett averages 119 against the Dockers as well, but I’d probably be leaning Danger here.
5 – CLAYTON OLIVER
Plays Sunday, 3.20PM
Clayton’s only played the Weagles once and has yet to grace the hallowed turf at Optus Stadium, so we don’t have a huge amount of historical data for him – which in hindsight isn’t surprising for a bloke with so few games. What does intrigue me is five of his past six scores have been 120+, and this week Max Gawn comes up against Scott Lycett and could get quite a lot of hitouts. Most of those hitouts will find their way to our red-headed friend, where he will score oodles of points. Yes please.
6 – MAX GAWN
Plays Sunday, 3.20PM
He let us down last week and I’ve had words with big Max. He was apologetic on the blower, but I told him apologies wouldn’t cut it when blokes and sheilas are losing finals over his scores. He understands. He’ll be back to his best on Sunday and will score 130+. Won’t we, Max?
7 – MATT CROUCH
Plays Sunday, 4.40PM
The Roos let four blokes get absolutely off the chain last week in Bont, Macrae and Lachie Hunter, and I see nothing that will stop Crouch waltzing on into Sunday’s game and doing the same. If Ben Jacobs is back, obviously give him a miss but Crouch is a ball magnet and has the potential to rack up big numbers. Has a 144 against the Roos in 2016.
8 – ZACH MERRETT
Plays Friday, 7.25PM
Was actually the sensible choice last week when looking whether to take a VC option ahead of Titch or Gawn, but hindsight is 20/20. Is my only real pick from Friday night’s game – Richmond share it too much, Dusty has fizzled and none of the Dons are consistent enough. Merrett will get attention, but should still be able to knock out a 120. That said, if you’re able to use the VC on a Saturday, do that instead.
9 – LACHIE WHITFIELD
Plays Saturday, 4.45PM
Hear me out here. Whitfield’s hit a strong run of form, with 141 and 130 in his past two and has hit the gas. Will likely step up if Kelly misses this week and play a pivotal midfield role. Worth a hail mary VC option? Why the bloody hell not.
10 – PATRICK CRIPPS
Plays Sunday, 1.10PM
There we go, I got Whitfield above Cripps one last time for season 2018 and this pleases me. Now watch Cripps score 170 because I put him as number 10. Just you watch. That said, he has a career average of 60 against the Dogs and also, you know, plays for Carlton. Captain at your own risk.
SMOKIE – SEB ROSS
Why not? He sucks us all in with his finishes to seasons, why not jump onboard? Has the struggling Crows and is at the feet of 2018 All-Australian ruckmen Lewis Pearce.
He could also score 60 though. So I mean there is that.