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SuperCoach 2019 – Player reviews: Dylan Shiel

Published by Community Member on

Shiel moved to Essendon in a blockbuster that strengthened their case as a favourite to shoot up the ladder. He has eye-catching skills, he can rack up disposals and can kick goals out of midfield.
So why has he never averaged more than 103 in a season with perennial finalists GWS?


Dylan Shiel is undoubtedly a star midfielder, and he is also one of the headline names in this year’s exciting class of players moving clubs.

Shiel really emerged from 2014-2017, where he showed his ability to be a game-breaking, goal-scoring midfielder. In this span, he averaged 25.8 touches and kicked 44 goals in 79 games, averaging 98.6 sc points with 24/79 (30%) 110+.

At GWS, Shiel was arguably the fourth best midfielder, with Kelly, Ward and Coniglio all being genuine A-graders. Now at Essendon, it’s fair to say he is Zach Merrett’s number-two, and while some believe Shiel will take some heat off Merrett, my assumption would be that teams will continue to try and shut down Essendon’s best midfielder and ball user (Merrett).


While Shiel had a strong run from 2014-2017, he dropped off significantly last year, and showed a worrying floor by dropping below 80 points on seven occasions. He also only managed five 110+ scores in his 89.7 average.

This lack of consistency that has plagued Shiel throughout his career has meant that even his career best year in 2015 only saw him average 102.8 from 14 games – good for 27th best in the midfield in per-game scoring.

He appears to be set for a more expansive role with Essendon, but he would need seriously clean up his disposal efficiency to be able to even threaten a 110 average without touching it 30+ times a game.


I touched on briefly in “The Bad”, but Dylan Shiel is one of the more prominent butchers of the footy in our game.

Yes, there are times he can burst from a contest with excellent pace, take two bounces and hit a forward on the lead lace-out, or kick one himself from 50.

But the fact remains that Dylan Shiel only hit the target with 55% of his kicks last year, meaning that pretty much every second kick was a waste of a stat as far as SuperCoach is concerned.


Dylan Shiel is an outstanding recruit for Essendon, and I think he will win them games off his own boot at times. But, in saying that, there is nothing that suggests that this is a good SuperCoach pick.

At 480k, he would need to be a keeper to be worth picking, and he has not shown the ability to string together a 110 average for more than a month at a time.

I absolutely believe Shiel can average 100-103 without much issue, but I would need to see it with my own eyes before I could buy Dylan Shiel as an every-week Superstar of the game, which is what a 110 average looks like.  

He is able to go very big on occasion, and has all the tools to be a star, and there is every chance he puts it all together in his new scenery and leads Essendon to a top-four spot and September glory. But I will happily wait and see, and I’m shocked that he is in 10% of teams while players like Zorko (4%) and Sloane (7%) are only 40k more expensive.

What you reckon, community? Will opposition teams see Shiel as damaging enough to leave Zerrett alone?

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Just lock in Zerrit!


Zoko has been poor, could explain the low %, but Neale could help that, and Sloane is another injury riddled player, wont touch him again!


Sorry, didnt mean to put that in your reply Mickyyyyyy.

Paul chapman

Solid write up, couldn’t agree more. Shiel could dominate and average 110, but I think it is more likely that he cops the tag most weeks allowing Merrett to roam free. Really struggling to decide between Merrett and crouch!


Hey Paul, also been struggling between Merrett and crouch, wouldn't mind some expert advice out there. Slightly swayed towards Merret.


Lock him in for a 100 average! Go Dons!


SC scoring sometimes underrates how good players actually are and I think players like Shuey, Ben Cunnington and Shiel are classic examples of this. Teams used to tag Shiel ahead of Kelly, Wards and Cogs until last season when they began to tag Kelly, but still tagged Shiel. Teams often have a focus on shutting down stoppage specialists and Shiel is exactly that. He was 3rd for centre clearances in 2017 and earned AA. I think teams will continue to try shut down Shiel because he is the most damaging at stoppages at the bombers. He is not quite as good as Merrett but more the type of player teams target.


One of the best post I’ve seen on here for a long time


Not even contemplating Shiel.. not in the top 50 MIDs in SC.. Rather take Cotchin if I had to pick one at that level.


Is there any argument for picking him if you think he'll average 105-110 in the first 8 rounds with the intentions of doing a straight trade to someone like a fallen Dusty, Bont or Zorko who might drop a little if they have a slow start? It's probably my Essendon bias but I have a good feeling about Shiel and the SuperCoach-friendly spot for him in our midfield.


I would say no
My rule is a player needs to make me 150k+ or be a keeper, and I don’t think Shiel will fit either of those descriptions. If you were looking to upgrade to one of those guys I’d recommend starting with Libba/Miles and 100k in the bank


Dusty, Bont and Zorko are all cheap anyway, better you just start one of them