Deck of Dream Team 2012: David Zaharakis

Name: David Zaharakis
Club: Essendon
Position: Midfielder/Forward
Assistant Coach 2012 Price: $443,200
Bye Round: 12
2011 Average: 88.2
2011 Games Played: 22
Predicted Average: 96

Why should I pick him? With the new rules introduced, there is arguably more importance in picking Dual Position Players in 2012. David Zaharakis retains his MID/FWD status and after another solid year kicking 31 goals and averaging 88 Dream Team points, he should be on his way to be one of the better forward picks next season. He had the 12th highest average of the available forwards (in 2012). Nine of his 22 games brought up the DT ton with a couple of thumpers (123, 126, 133) thrown in to show what he is capable of. Zaharakis’ average of the last 11 games of the season was a very respectable 97 points.

We’re going to find that he will be a bit cheaper than Dayne Beams – with a lot more job security – and will be priced around Mitch Robinson. For me, I will pick him over these two players. I feel his improvement will take him to the mid-90’s without too much hassle. The Bombers are improving and with that, Zaharakis should improve a fair bit too.

Why shouldn’t I pick him? His consistency in scoring is a huge worry. 8 of his games he recorded scores below 70 Dream Team points with a couple of big clangers… 42 v Sydney in Rd 2, 57 v West Coast in Rd 7 and 51 v Fremantle in Rd 12. The positive thing is that his first half of the season he got most of his bad games out of the way averaging 77, but finished the season strong with an average of 97 over the final 11 games.

While I feel he is going to be a star this season and hopefully take his game further and be close to a premium forward, my main worry about Zaharakis is the byes. The Bombers share their bye round with Collingwood, Fremantle, Geelong, Melbourne and Sydney. Now thinking about these guys, in Round 12 we might have a few worries in our forward line (and maybe midfield).

Of the top 11 available forwards, by 2011 average, Steve Johnson, Paul Chapman, Dayne Beams, Adam Goodes, Nat Fyfe, Travis Cloke, Matthew Pavlich, Ryan O’Keefe and Colin Sylvia all have the bye that round. Let me re-phrase that; Buddy Franklin and Mitch Robinson are the only two of the top 12 forwards who will be playing in Round 12. Unless you’re just going to throw away that round (good call if you’re just going for a league premiership), then selection here will have to come into calculation.

Hmm… plenty to think about!

Deck of DT Rating: King. I don’t see too much risk in picking David Zaharakis as I don’t feel he is going backward anytime soon. There is plenty of upside and the whole Dual Position link (FWD/MID) will work wonders during the season. I just need to workout what my forward line will look like before I lock him in and throw away the key!

FOLLOW WARNIE ON TWITTER: @WarnieDT … ask me stuff!


  • Will be my 2nd forward picked in 2012.

  • A very strong chance to start for me… With not many other Essendon players on my radar he may be too hard to pass up. Will just have to see if he fits in to the structure.

  • What do we think his chances of getting tagged in 2012 are i mean besides Watson and no one actually tags Stanton who else do they have to be tagged?

    • I think most of the time he will go head to head… But your right there really isn’t anyone that usually needs tagging.

  • Hey is anyone else considering Christensen?

  • When is dream team open. This week isn’t it??

  • Another great choice for the deck.
    Can see natural improvement in Zaha, but like you said, it’ll be all about fitting into my structure.

  • What about Jason Winderlich who is coming back from injury?
    # Has DPP
    # Averaged 87.7 @ 2010
    # Considerably cheaper

    How will Jason Winderlich impact on David Zaharakis scoring potential?

  • Nice write up warnie, definately on the radar for me . Only issues are the round 12 bye and his consistancy as you pointed out. He’d have to become more consistant though wouldn’t he?

  • Zaharakis was in my team but now replaced by Dustin Martin in the forward line…

  • Great article. Sidebottom or Zaharakis. What do ya think guys? :)

  • Switcheroo befween Zaha and Martin, Zaha will depend on his NAB cup form.

    Zaha- Forward

  • Watched this bloke in person cruise through the midfield and nearly beat my beloved kangas single handed. Huge chance for the kings..

  • Rather have Dusty in the fwds then Zaha. currently have Stevie J, Christensen, Fyfe with Saad on the bench so he doesnt currently fit into my due to the round 13 byes, Loving the uniques in the deck this year so far and weve only had about 10 cards in the deck :)

  • hmm i dont know the question here is consistency

  • guys who do you think i should chose between

    Sidebottom or Christensen !?

  • Consistency improves with age and games, one of the first players i would consider

  • Nice article Warnie, Zaha was a certainty for me before Dusty Martin had DPP. So now I have to decide between Zaha and Sidebottom! who would you choose?

  • Lock and Loaded! This is my Forward/Midfield structure:

    Dane Swan, Gary Ablett jnr, Marc Murphy, Steele Sidebottom, Tom Mitchell, Dayne Zorko
    BENCH: Anthony Miles, Dylan Shiel.

    Steve Johnson, Lance Franklin, Dayne Beams, Nathan Fyfe, David Zaharakis, Dustin Martin, Jason Porplyzia. BENCH: Murray Newman, Ahmed Saad.


  • Good write up Warnie.

    Will be interesting to see who people put in their forward line with alot of DPP FWD/MID players out there, and with most of them probably not good enough to go in the Mid will be going in everyones forward lines: Zaha, Beams, Sidebottom, D.Martin, Robinson, and probably a few more to come

    • You can pretty much have a midfield and a midfield in the forward line now with beams , sidebottom, dusty, zaha…etc who needs key forwards…haha

      • Exactly. Last year I ended up with Fyfe, Pav, Roc and Goodes. Do you think anyone will have the guts to go Pav, Roc and Goodes in the same team? It would be amazing if they all fired, except, for my team!!!

  • Do i go

    Martin or Barlow In The Middle?

    Considering Martin has DPP

    • both? move Martin to the forward line later when you want to cash in a fwd rookie

      • I never thought of it like that. I guess I will probably move DPP around so that I have the best possible rooks. Oh man, I can’t believe it took me so long to really grasp the new rules. I spent so much time last year getting my DPP’s right, so that not only did I miss out on donuts, but my best rooks were on the field.

  • Zaha has been on my list for a while now – as shown in previous articles (relating to break out players) his second half was improving last year so I’ve got him locked in for 2012!

    I realise the bye situation is important but should I be building a team based on the byes or should I be just going for getting the best team on the paddock (regardless of byes)?

    I finished 1,305th last year so realistically I can’t see me driving away with the Holden Camira so I’m thinking I might throw a few bye games and aim for league wins.

    Any thoughts?

    • Mate, 1300th odd isn’t too bad, I went 3000th then 279th for my first two years. Hanging to crack the top 100. This will be a good year too, the byes will exagerate injuries and badly picked teams. Have a crack champion, anyone can throw three weeks. I have made a minorly modified team to rotate around the byes, you can too. For me only overall ranking is the blue ribbon event, league wins are like winning a heptathlon event.


    WIll never forget that, he’s a lock in my midfield and will play there all season. Lock and load, just like last season.

  • Locked, I can see him having a big year. No more room for Robbo in the team now dusty is a dpp

  • 2012 Picker is OPEN

  • Team Picker is OPEN!!!

  • Major premo’s are approx 40k more each ouchhhhh

    • My team was 300k under the salary cap on the fanplanner and I’ve run about 800k short of putting exact same team onto picker = fanplanner was approx 1.2mill underpriced…back to the drawing board :(

      • Oh my god. hahahaha.

        Well, Warnie mentioned the price difference may be greater than we thought and you said you took $500,000 off your team, but ONE POINT TWO MILLION DOLLARS!

        Where did all that money go? I bet Demitriou took it.

        • I just stripped back my team on fanplaner. I pressed the mouse like a ninja, slashing away at DT hopes and dreams. And I still only have $577,000 left. But you know what? I love it. Bring on the crazy tri-bye madness.

  • Agreed Brap.
    But it does say at the bottom, that prices are not 100% comfirmed yet.

  • AFL Dream Team Player Positioning Key Points:

    Scotland and Carrazzo MID/DEF
    Heppell DEF ONLY
    Martin Clarke COLL DEF ONLY
    Beams, Sidebottom, Zaharakis, Robinson, MARTIN, Monfries and Knights FWD/MID.
    Roughead RUC/FWD
    Kruzeur and Ryder RUC ONLY.

    Any other question, please ask! :)


  • How about DPP rookies? Did any of the popular December picks get anything added

    • A few, Adam Tomlinson is DEF/FWD, SAM DOCHERTY is MID/DEF, Stephen Coniglio, Chad Wingard and Hoskin-Elliot MID ONLY. Dayne Zorko and Adam TRELOAR MID/FWD. Alex Sexton MID/FWD and Hayden Crozier FWD ONLY.

      Hope this helps.

  • Nice work Warnie,

    I think your best point is 77 first half of the season, 97 the second half. The man is going places.

    Although, I was delighted to not take any notice of Mitch Morton’s second half of the year in 10′, which led to a terrible 11′. Anyone who has the gut’s to get him in 12′ isn’t taking him as a smokey, more as a fog.

    It goes to show the power of DT, that I am willing to forgive Zaca for stepping up to be the talisman for Essendon when they downed the Pies on Anzac day a few years ago. I was heavily committed emotionally to that game. I had the projector out, friends over and a belly full. It hurt.

    I had mates who go for the Bombers emailing me Zaca’s highlights the next week, the bastards hahahaha

    Zaca’s been locked for me since I heard he’d one the best and fairest. No DT points for that I know, but to get an AFL Bn’F at 21 is amazing.

    I think there will be a changing of the guard next year, or more likely, I hope there is. Fyfe, Zaca, Steele and of course, lockety-lock-lock man Martin, will be in my 12′ team. Not sure if I have the guts to slide in Robbo or Beams, but who knows.

    I just hope that the Fwd/Mid rooks like Will Hoskin-Elliott and Dayne Zorko look the business come round 1. Cause if those cats are going to play serious games, then I am going to have them as mid rooks and a smile on my face.

    DT madness!

    • Just read from Nooie that Hoskin-Elliott is mid only. (how funny is it when both parents are to stubborn to give up either of their surnames!)

  • Good stuff Warnie – on the one hand I hope like mad that Howlett, Lonergan and Melksham improve out of sight and that guys like Elliot Kavanagh and Alex Browne can contribute but don’t take Zaha’s midfield time away. Almost a lock…probably a lock.

  • Considering with his DPP, but I can see Beams, Sidebottom, being more consistent in 2012. Probably goin to choose one of the Pies

  • Hidden away in one those Team Builder articles on AFL website, but very very interesting and may make people reconsider.

    Zaharakis played every game last year despite knee tendinitis which left him unable to run for three days after each match day. The injury has also affected his pre-season. He spent most of November lifting weights, and only hit the track to test out his knee in December. Even with the rehab-focused running, he pronounced himself sorer than he had been in any of his previous three years at the club.