Gentleman… Start your Engines! (Who is making up your Engine Room?)

Time to look at the Engine Room… the Heart of DT.

This article will look at what I consider the top 12 most talked about or should be talked about players. (The selection of players itself will generate some debate, and yes I am aware that I haven’t included Barlow or Hayes but McRath has already done a ripper article on that!)

When looking at Premo Mid’s the question that always gets raised do you want Consistency or High Ceiling?

Are you happy to take 110 every week or do you want the 140’s balanced with the occasional 100. Everyone takes a different approach. So how do you separate the SUPER GUNS from the Couldabeens.

How do you decide who to start with and who are upgrade targets?

Most teams will start with either 3 or 4 of these, given that Underpriced Premos (Barlow, Hayes) will make up most teams number 4 or 5.

Also bear in mind how the Byes play out this year…you don’t want any more than 2 guns out each round if you are serious about the car!

Some basic stats to start with:

Consistency

Premo

Bye

$$

2011 Ave

GP

100+

110+

120+

Games under 100

Ave when under 100

Swan

12

$598,300

121

24

18

16

12

6

85

Pendles

12

$576,900

117

25

22

13

13

3

91

Boyd

11

$573,800

116

22

17

14

9

5

86

Rockliff

11

$554,200

114

20

15

13

7

5

85

Murphy

13

$551,300

112

24

18

15

8

6

94

Ablett

13

$554,700

112

20

12

10

7

8

90

Mitchell

13

$554,000

112

23

17

14

8

6

81

Selwood

11

$540,600

109

20

14

10

7

6

86

Thompson

11

$538,500

109

22

15

11

8

7

79

Redden

11

$540,100

109

22

16

15

4

6

88

Priddis

11

$521,400

105

25

14

11

5

11

89

Swallow

11

$491,500

99

22

12

10

3

10

76

Pendles jumps out scoring over the ton 88% of the time. Swan, Boyd, Rocky and Murph raised their bat over 75% of games that they played in. Sammy, Redden and Selwood  were all over 70%, with the rest of the guys under that.

For the times that the guns do not fire and score under 100, Ablett, Murphy and Pendles average over 90…talking to how consistent they are..the others don’t lag too far behind…Worryingly both Swallow and Priddis in 2011 regularly scored under 100. Too often for my liking.

Going Large

But let’s be serious, these guys need to average 110+ and more like 120+ (but maybe I am greedy).

So when they score a 100… How often do they turn that into 120+ and how large do they go?

Premo 100s into 120s Ceiling

Swan

66.7%

171

Pendles

59.1%

166

Ablett

58.3%

175

Thompson

53.3%

151

Boyd

52.9%

162

Selwood

50.0%

178

Mitchell

47.1%

137

Rockliff

46.7%

151

Murphy

44.4%

145

Priddis

35.7%

150

Swallow

25.0%

142

Redden

25.0%

138

Swanny,  Pendles and Ablett in particular score big and score big often. Thommo, Boyd and Selwood score over 120 half the time they hit the ton.

Ablett smashed out 130+ on 5 occasions and Swanny did 4, Pendles, Boyd, Rocky and Thommo did it 3 times….so they know how to score… 

Reliability

How reliable are these guys and will they stay on the park.

Premo

2011 Ave

2010 Ave

2009 Ave

3 Yr Ave

2010 to 2011

Age

Swan

121

123

119

121

-2%

27

Ablett

112

119

118

116

-6%

27

Boyd

116

115

104

112

1%

29

Pendles

117

107

98

107

9%

24

Selwood

109

107

103

106

2%

23

Murphy

112

100

103

105

11%

24

Mitchell

112

100

102

105

11%

29

Thompson

109

96

98

101

12%

28

Rockliffe

114

87

101

24%

21

Priddis

105

94

96

98

10%

26

Swallow

99

99

90

96

0%

24

Redden

109

79

94

28%

21

In the main all of the above had a great 2011 averaging higher than their 3 year average, Red and Rock had breakout years, Murphy, Pendles and Priddis showed us why they are emerging if not already super stars…certainly the first 2 are. Sammy and Thommo showed age is no barrier. Swan, Ablett and Boyd showed why they are champions.

Age may come into play with older legs and therefore potential increased rotations. It is safe to assume that Swanny and Pendles may have a trip to Arizona half way through the year…given Swan’s output in the latter half of last year… this can only be a good thing.

Most of these guys play over 80% game time, with only Rockliff (73%) and Selwood (65%) playing less than that. If we assume increased game time means increased score…big upside for these 2.

The Draw

What does 2012 hold?

The below table looks at average based on 2011 scores before and after their respective byes. Where players are up against GWS I have used GC as an average. In Ablett’s case I have used his yearly average as his proposed score against GWS.

Premo

Before Bye

After Bye

Diff

Ablett

120.00

113.00

-7.00

Swan

116.18

120.10

3.92

Selwood

113.50

108.20

-5.30

Murphy

113.40

111.70

-1.70

Mitchell

113.00

108.50

-4.50

Rockliff

112.80

119.50

6.70

Thompson

112.10

112.50

0.40

Pendles

111.80

124.00

12.20

Boyd

109.20

119.40

10.20

Redden

103.90

112.60

8.70

This does not take into account any improvement … I think that most of these players will improve by at least 5% and that is not factored in.

A few of these guys easy draws has been well publicised, particularly Thommo and looks like a good consistent bet for the year.

Value for Money

Here is my spin on how all of the above rate and different metrics as to how I have ranked them.

Firstly…given what I have looked at.. I have removed Priddis and Swallow… their numbers simply do not stack up as well as some of the others.

Here are the metrics that I have used and how I would rank them.

Premo

Boyd

Pendles

Selwood

Murphy

Rockliff

Swan

Ablett

Thompson

Mitchell

Redden

Over 100s

2

1

8

3

3

3

10

9

6

7

Games <100 Ave

5

2

5

1

6

6

3

8

7

4

110+%

4

7

8

5

3

2

8

8

6

1

%120 of 100s

5

2

6

9

8

1

3

4

7

10

PPTOG

7

4

1

7

2

3

5

9

6

8

Ceiling

5

4

1

7

6

3

2

6

9

8

Value for $$

7

3

10

2

1

5

8

4

6

9

Start Ave

9

8

3

4

6

2

1

7

5

10

Finish Ave

4

1

10

8

3

2

5

7

9

6

Total

48

32

52

46

38

27

45

62

61

63

Rank

6

2

7

5

3

1

4

9

8

10

Dane Swan

What is there left to say… he is DT gold.

(refer DoDT Article)

Pros – He scores consistently and consistently BIG. All of his numbers stack up. Favourable Bye

Cons – He is expensive…Not sure how many will start with him but will definitely be in every ones calculations at some stage. What will his body do?… will he be sent to Arizona again to get him through the year?

Starter or Upgrade:  Either…Certainly performs better in the back half of the year and should see his price fall across the early rounds unless he really smashes it… But is that worth missing out on the point he may bring in over that time?

Rating: 10/10

Scott Pendlebury

I made the mistake last year of not starting with him based on his stupid dreadlocks…DOH! Thankfully hair seems to be under control this year.

Pros – He is a Rolls Royce, He gets A LOT of the ball, he tackles, he is a very consistent scorer. He doesn’t just do 100’s he does 120+ (13 times last year) the most of anyone.

Cons – Not a lot, I think this guy will be the number 1 Mid this year. You could argue that he may have some more competition for the pill this year with Swanny, Daisy, Ball, Sidebum, Beams etc rotating through.. But really cannot see it affecting him.

Starter or Upgrade: Definitely should finish the year better based on the teams that he plays and traditionally finishes the year around 4 points higher than the start… but as per Swan… think you need to have one of them in your team from the get go

Rating 9.5/10

Tom Rockliff

AS we know came of age last year . He gets the pill and is a very DT friendly player. He tackles like a hungry Greco Roman searching for a chip.

Pros – Has all of the right ingredients to be a super star. In 2011 had limited time on ground due to rotations and still pumped out great numbers., with a bigger tank you have to think that will only improve.

Cons – Can he repeat it? That is the big punt. Will last year’s efforts see him get more attention this year?

Starter or Upgrade: I am gonna hold on Rocky and see what the first half of his season brings… he should finish with a wet sail… my figures tell me average 120+ for his last half of the year

Rating: 8.5/10

Gary Ablett Jr

Pretty much read comments above for Swanny. Between the 2 of them, they are the greatest DT players we have ever seen.

Pros – He plays in one of the bottom 2 teams and just finds it, he kicks goals, he tackles, he is a ball magnet. He can score BIG, Super BIG

Cons – He doesn’t get to play against Gold Coast!

Starter or Upgrade: LOCK, LOCK, LOCK…There are not gonna be  many teams that don’t have him.  Here is a hint. Select Him.

Rating: 10/10

Marc Murphy

The boy can play…that is undoubted. Read DoDT Article.

Pros – In arguably the best midfield in the comp, he is the out rider, kicks a lot, kicks goals and… wel….l is just a gun.  Super consistent, scores over the ton 18 times last year.

Cons – Has a head like a tennis ball. Gibbsy proposed move to the mids may impact his scoring…but I am banking on it not. He shares the Bye with Ablett and Sammy Mitchell…so selecting all 3 would be very tough.

Starter or Upgrade: Starter for mine, I like the Blues early draw and think he may jump out of the blocks.

Rating: 8/10

Matthew Boyd

Is he the forgotten man of this year?

Pros – He is a DT Demi god…Doesn’t quite hit the heights of Swanny or GAJ but goes bloody close. Averaged over 110 each year for the last 3 years. Averages more points when the doggies lose (lets face it, they will probably lose more than they win)

Cons– High Starting Price, New Coach (what impact will this have?)Shares round 11 bye with a lot of others

Starter or Upgrade: Upgrade target for me…want to see that he still has it (may cost me some points) my figures point to a 10 point increase in the back part of the season.

Rating: 9/10

Joel Selwood

Refer DoDT article again. Awesome player..and now Captain.

Pros – Likes to get in and get the pill and gets a lot of it. Umps love him and his rubber legs. His Time on ground was really low last year and his numbers were still bloody good, can only expect this to go up.

Cons – Effect of the captaincy? There may be better value for money. Round 11 BYE

Starter or Upgrade: Will definitely start better than he finishes, based on history and what his drawer looks like. I reckon it is between him and Murph if you are going for that super consistent MID that may elevate them to superstardom.

Rating: 8/10

Sam Mitchell

DoDT article again. Lightning Hands, Sammy Everywhere.

Pros-Super consistent, Fantastic Year last year. Plays for the DT friendly hawks.

Cons– Age? At 29 is the oldest of this group. Took a game off last year to play with his kids…cmon Sammy how does that help us?

Starter or Upgrade: If I was gonna take him it would be as a starter, aging legs may see him rested later in the year depending on how happy a team they are at Hawthorn.

Rating: 8/10

Scott Thompson

Those that didn’t have him last year regretted it.

Pros– His Draw… well publicised, plays GC, GWS and PA twice….will definitely keep the stats boys busy. Super Consistent and has pumped out some huge scores

Cons-Age is 28, like Sammy he may get rested. Handballs a lot, but gets enough of it to justify though. Round 11 BYE

Starter or Upgrade: Either, super consistent and should be very steady during the year. I have no doubt he will average 110 ish and you could definitely do worse.

Rating: 8/10

Jack Redden

Absolute breakout year.  The Jenna Jamison of the group….Loves a tackle!

Pros– He has all the makings of a superstar. Most teams will go with Rocky, so could be a good point of difference. When he scroes a 100 he almost always turns it into 110+

Cons– Like Rocky, can he back it up? Not as flashy as Rocky, Maybe better options for the $$

Starter or Upgrade: Will come home strong… I am predicting an 8 point differential and averaging around 116 for the latter part of the year.

Rating: 8/10

Just as a point of difference….one guy that I haven’t looked at is Leigh Montagna… I just wonder with his good mate Lenny back , will he capture the 2009 and 2010 form?…maybe just maybe.

So there you have it… my take on the Premos and thoughts on what the year may look like. I am still undecided on my set up but will certainly have Pendles, Ablett and Murph….

Anyway, now open the debate on who isn’t in there, who should be, who is your smokie?

So who is starting in your engine room?

Start the motors all… and let’s roll!

Cheers and Happy DTing!

119 Comments

  • swan, ablett, rocky….

  • Considering A Swallow as unique.

    • Dylan, as per the article… He will improve but don’t think he will be consistent 110+

      Would look at Montagna or Daisy as a smokey… Depending on how byes work with your Mid structure

      • Good point Rainman, no Daisy for me, might go with Sidebottom in the forwards and planning on starting Swan then getting Pendles down the track. Hadn’t really considered Monty this year, will take closer look, he is well priced for his potential.

      • And great write up Rainman, really has provided a lot of food for thought. Cheers

  • Great analysis Rainman! just a couple of things…

    – Although Scotty Thompson averages 112 in the first and back half of the season, I wouldnt call him a consistent premo with shockers in 2011 such as
    78, 86, 61, 75, 92, 71, 89 – Not really what you want in a Premo MID (though he does have an easy draw).

    – In Jelwood’s CONS who wrote “There may be better value for money”. I dont see how there is considering Jelwood got concussion in round 1 for 27 points, if you eliminate that game he averaged 114 instead of 109 so really he is 25k underpriced….

    Sorry for being picky, it is an AWESOME article and have been loving your others this season and hope there is more coming! :)

    • Adamant, valid points mate.. I agree.

      In regards to Jelwood.. To be honest was struggling with the cons… Think I was trying to justify to myself for not picking him! BTW I excluded Jelwoods concussed round in my analysis.

      Scotty T…has a large variation but he is the talk of a lot of teams, hence that was why he was included… Personally I think Sloane will be the Rocky of this year and smash it. Doing some analysis as we speak about premos v easy teams (I.e. GC, GWS, PA) watch this space!

      Thanks for the positive feedback and the constructive comments ;)

      • Yeah good call I agree that Sloane will absolutely smash it this season but dont have the balls to pick him! cant wait for your analysis on “premos vs easy teams”! :)

        • Yeah. I’m tempted to go sloane but then you have Barlow at the same price! The dilemma.

  • swan GaJ monty and barlow, what do you guys think?

  • Great article Rainman.

    It perfectly underlines the significance of the byes….most of us want Swan AND Pendles along with Barlow and your article underlines that Pendles and Swan are #1 and #2 DT midfielders, but we can’t have them with the Round 12 bye.

    • Thommo…. Thanks… But I think we can… I am starting with both…and balancing out the rest of my premos…. I may lose 100 points come round 12 by playing two 70 point rookies at worst case… But I am gonna take the hit. They are SOOOOOOOO worth it…. And I hate Collingwood!

      BTW I don’t have Barlow

  • Premos in forward i have are Martin, Buddy & Robinson i have 889 600 to fill 2 positions. Who do you think i should choose?

  • I think a lot people are forgetting swan was playing injured last yr. He played forward alot in rnd 10-11 and then missed a couple including the bye and went overseas for recovery. if Swanny was fit i reackon those couple of games wouldve been 100+ giving him a higher average, less games <100 and a better <100 ave. Just take that into consideration when talkin bout takin Pendles over Swan!

  • Thanks Rainman for an awesome read! You have definitely helped me decide who my upgrade targets will be. Thanks again Buddy!

  • Pendles is due for a great year! currently have Pendles, GAJ, Jelwood and Barlow. With Pendles or Jelwood as my captain.

  • As usual, an awesome article with heaps of food for thought.

    With so many really good mid options, I’m not really certain about any selection…everyone’s just a placeholder until we get to the first lockout.

  • I’m spending 3-4 hours a day tinkering with strategy’s and players its doing my head in. I’ve come to the conclusion that there are many, many ways to have a solid team. We are all trying to squeeze an extra 100 or so points out with our planning.

  • GOLDSTEIN, LUENBERGER, SANDILANDS OR MUMFORD??? PLEASE HELP!!!

  • Is it too much to have

    Swan, Pendles, GAJ, Beams and Hayes in the Mids?

    Franklin, Zaharakis, Sidebottom, N. Riewoldt

    Goddard, Deledio, Suckling

    Good choices for premiums?

    • You shouldn’t be looking @ Beams – didn’t you watch DT talk pre-season Episode 2??

      • Of course I watched it…. Was thinking of having him in the mids to begin and then swap him with a rookie fwd/mid when the time comes to upgrade to another gun.

        Leaving Beams in the Fwd line.

        Choosing Barlow is an option, but if he ends up not being a Keeper… not much point picking him then… Beams would be a keeper for the entire season I’m pretty sure of that..

        Barlow has alot of potential however, so I guess Barlow is the better option over Beams.

        • Beams @ 504K (from memory) is heaps (too much). Rd 12 will kill you if Barlow is your next pick.

          If Swan/Pendles is locked for you then no more Rd12 mids.

          • lol…lots of brackets….haha

          • Rd 12 will kill you??

            You mean in a League game of course?

            Every team still having a bye though so overall scores it wont matter who you have…. just the league matchups..

          • It doesn’t matter if your gunning for league or overall – if you stack a certain line with 3 guns from the same round you’re in trouble.

  • Great article Rainman.

    Indeed, between this and Tbetta’s ‘Fantastic Fixture Fact File, its been a motza of information the last few days.

    It has me entertaining some significant changes to stuff I had had locked in since the start…

    I realise you may not see this as it’s getting a bit long in the tooth, but would value any thoughts on the following:

    Broughton-Rockliff-Martin-Christensen

    OR

    Armstrong-Swan-Beams-Riewoldt

    Both work for my bye structure, but I have chosen the come up with the second option because of your stuff on Swannie and the pre-bye fixturing of the second group.

    Any preference or is ‘toss-a-coin’?

  • Selwood has round 12 bye with Swany and Pendles not round 11.

  • what do you think about j.porplyzia??

  • Kruezer – Caddy – Selwood or Leunberger/Jacobs/Mcevoy – Pendles – Neale/Smith/Yeo/Couch