The Friday Scramble: NAB Round 1

Last season I brought you Get Off The Bench, however, this year without those Bye’s each week we don’t need to worry about that quite so much, so this season on a Friday morning I will take a look at the issues that you will have to deal with of a Friday in setting your lineup and finalising your trades prior to Lockout.  Let’s be honest, as the countdown timer continues to tick, it becomes more of a scramble to make sure you have everything just right to maximise your score for the round.

We will still look at good options amongst your rookie and fringe players, but that won’t be the only focus of the post.  Popular trades and other information like that will also be covered.

Whilst the serious stuff and our real scrambling won’t start for a few weeks yet, I thought that over the remaining rounds of the NAB I will put out a few things that I think are worthy of you taking a look at over the weekend in helping you determine your starting lineup.  So let’s have a look at the second half of the NAB cup.

Rookies On The Radar… or are they off the map?

Firstly, before watching any of these games make sure you have a read of Chooks Rooks and memorize those names!  Whilst there are plenty of tasty rookies out there for us to keep an eye on, the one thing that you must remember is before you go and lock some of these guys in your team because they are ultra cheap and getting lots of time on the ground in the NAB, are they actually on the senior list or are they rookie listed and awaiting elevation.  A few teams have players on the Long Term Injury list or have senior list spots available for other reasons (For Example: Port have one due to only having one veteran so can elevate one rookie for the entire season).  There is little point having a guy on your bench that isn’t even eligible to get a game so can’t earn you money.  Most of these elevation notifications will come after the NAB just before teams are announced for round 1, so keep your research on them and wait for the announcement that they are going to be upgraded.

Guys that I will have a keen eye on this week include Darren Pfeiffer from Port Adelaide who I think will get that permanent spot I mentioned above.  Sam Rowe from Carlton is another I hope to see first hand if he gets a run.  For the Crows there is Sam Kerridge who was their first draft pick who will be getting a run.  Keen to see what he can do with his DPP of Mid/Fwd.  Just not sure where he fits into their set up and if he will get a game going forward into the real stuff.  Luke Brown is another that I am interested in but unfortunately doesn’t appear to be in the squad.  As for the games I will watch on Fox Footy, The Big O gets a run along with Billie Smedts from the Cats, I think everyone will be watching those guys.  Ahmed Saad, Terry Milera and Seb Ross will all come under close scrutiny for the Saints as will Tommy Walsh from Sydney.

Big Guns not performing how you hoped?

Some of our big gun hopefuls didn’t really fire in the first week which may have sent some of us scrambling to our teams to get them out and put “the other guy” in.  However, I urge you to hold back and not worry just yet.  I mean, take a listen to Swanny’s post match interview where he claimed to not even know they won.  These seasoned guys just don’t take it that seriously yet.  So take it with a grain of salt and just keep an eye on those guys that really are fighting to get onto the ground for round 1.

 Injuries ruining seasons already!!

We all know that one injury can stuff your whole lineup.  Whilst we don’t want anyone to get injured, if it happens in the NAB there is still time to make changes to our DT lineups.  So far this year we have lost Le Cras and McAffer.  I don’t think a lot of teams would have had big Brent from Collingwood in their lineup, but The Frenchman from West Coast may have graced a few teams (particularly over in Tbetta country out west).  However, it isn’t just the season ending injuries to consider.  Keep an eye out for those soft tissue injuries that people pick up, whilst they say they will be right to go for round 1.  These injuries can tend to linger and then strike the guy down after a few tough weeks of the real stuff.

Speaking of lingering injuries, a guy that would be in a lot of teams in my part of the country is Jason Porplyzia.  Whislst his shoulder isn’t the problem this time, he has picked up a calf injury.  He isn’t playing this week, so hopefully we get to see next week how serious this injury really is.

Another concern that we have is that one of the GWS gun rookies, Dylan Shiel who is probably locked into just about every midfield at the moment was seen at the game with a Moon Boot on last week, now unless his appendix is in a different place to everyone else that I know, then keep a close watch on this as I haven’t seen anything come out about the reasons for this.  Another rookie, Dayne Zorko has also disappointed most of us by getting injured, however, the upside is that for these guys that don’t play the first few rounds they are going to be good upgrade targets during the year, think Mzungu and Callinan from last season.

However, the biggest and most upsetting news this week comes in the form of knee surgery to everyone’s favourite Razor Ray Chaimberlain.  News is that our most recognisable ump is out until at least round 6!!  I am sure this is shattering news to Brian Taylor who loves calling games with Razor umpiring.


That wraps it up from me today, enjoy the games this weekend.  As I said in my previous post about the NAB, don’t take too much in regarding playing time and positions until the last two rounds of the NAB as coaches are still experimenting at the moment.  I will look at some more thoughts going into next week, but as we all know, the real stuff doesn’t start for another 4 weeks!

Tell us in the comments below what you guys are all going to be looking out for this weekend.

Hit me up with your thoughts and ideas for what you want to know about over the coming weeks on twitter @pkd73


  • It might be less of a scramble this year as you can do reversible trades …

    Oh, who am I kidding? It’ll be just as bad.

    • Not just the trades though, I will look at some matchups, guys that are underperforming, any late news and a review of things that you need to think about before lockout. Friday is always a very busy day!

  • Nice one again Dunny. A few names to look out for.

  • Nice writeup Dunny thanks. I have three rookies currently in my side that I will be hoping make the side. Porps never really factored in my side as i’m going by the “no injury rule” this year.

    • spewing no porps or brown, there’s definitely room for brown in the crows squad, just hope he tears it up!

      • My sources inside the Crows camp say it was some Dental work that has kept Brown out this week (possibly from the bar hit he copped last weekend). So it shouldn’t be an issue going forward. I expect he will be back either next week or the week after.

        • he is currently in my side and he has not fronted up to my match committee to reveal any bar punch up… any more info on what happened with that?

          • Not much more info. There was some altercation at a local bar here and he got hit. Was in the Adelaide papers, but wouldn’t have been big enough to get a mention anywhere else.

          • Which bar Dunny? I used to live in Adelaide so am curious as to which one it was.
            Haven’t read about it either Melbourne or Perth, would have been a different story if it was a Collingwood or Essendon player.

      • thanks Dunny, he remains in the line-up for now..

  • How can we find out easily who is/isn’t on the rookie list?

  • Am I alone in not being sold on Pfeiffer? The bloke never looked much hack to me, but if he tears it up and gets elevated then I will stand corrected.

    Porps is pushing the freindship at the moment so might be squeezed out before round 1 if he isn’t fit.

    Smedts interests me, but not sure he will play as much come season proper. If named round 1 then that seals it (assuming he looks to score well also)

    PS: I have been conned into playing NRL supercoach + dreamteam by a workmate and I know NOTHING! Should be interesting to see if I can stay interested in it….

    • I am with you, not completely sold on Pfeiffer and he plays for my team! All reports from Alberton are that he is doing the right things and is almost a lock to get one of the two Rookie Elevation spots at Port. There is one permanent one due to only having one veteran on the list and another one to replace Cameron Hitchcock who is on the LTI list.

      I want to see a fair bit out of Pfeiffer over the next 4 weeks before I pick him up. But if he is in Matty’s best 22 then he will stay there for a while, he showed last year that he is willing to put faith in the youngsters and give them a go…. think Pittard after he helped to lose us the game agaisnt Gold Coast… a day I would rather forget!

      • The Port win against Melbourne was great! Good crowd, good atmosphere and a win that sealed my number one position at my work foot tipping!

        On a serious note it was good to see Port have a win in front of it’s supporters after such a tough year.

    • i have also been conned into playnig NRL DT and have only ever watch 3 games in my life… all three have been grand finals… should be very interesting.

      • for nrl dreamteam pick up golakickers on ur wing or halves and guys who make lots of tackles who play for 80 mins in the fowards dont go over board on big players and if u do pick them in ur second row and hooker hope this helps nrl man all my life but now turned thanks to all my vic and tassie mates who live on the sunny cst have blues v bris up here in two weeks which is great even though they can only fit 5000 in

        • thanks for the tips

          • the two most expensive guys and thruston are my main pickups so far then picked up a few from the nrl dreamteam builder on bigpond site. my mate is a big time raiders supporter so i have a few of them like campese as well

          • i have made a nrl side to…. i picked players based on if i herd of them or not… so lets say there is a shit load a storm players…….smith cronk slater hoffman

    • Never been convinced about Pfeiffer… only managed like 6 games or something at Carlton and 2 at Adelaide? Or thereabouts. He will have some shredding up to do to get on my team.

  • Nice writeup mate. Enjoyed your series last year so looking forward to this one too.

    I’ve been playing with a bit of a scrambled side this morning based on the ol’ secret squirrel mid-pricer strategy. Seen a lot of these names thrown up as smokey options over the last week and wondered what a full side of them might look like.

    Waters, Grimes, A Selwood, J Hunt, T Armstrong, Hargrave, K Hunt (Bugg, Bagualey)
    Swan, Hartlett, Sloane, Hayes, Scully, Gaff (Hogan, Magner)
    McEvoy, Giles (Orren, Derrickx)
    Ballantyne, Christensen, Brown, Winderlich, Rohan, Porplyzia, Byrnes (Walsh, Chee)

    This type of side needs a perma-captain so figure Swan’s as good as any. Rookies subject to change of course and NAB form would probably see one or two of the others dropped as well. I like that this one doesn’t rely on any rookies playing every round, let alone scoring well. Jolly probably would have been a better fit than McEvoy in terms of mid-priced players but figure rucks would be the last division upgraded so wanted cover for the byes.

    Oh, and this side has ~1m left in cash for upgrades rounds 6-10; perhaps ten trades of +100k before rookies even need to be harvested. Naturally the strategy assumes at least a couple of these mid-pricers become keepers.

    Will probably switch back to the side that I had last night before the end of the weekend, but it was fun putting it together and seeing how else the salary cap could be spent.

    • This is the stage of preseason where things start getting ugly.
      Like seriously wtf are you talking about?
      How about a team with all playing rooks & 5 million in the Kitty?
      Or there’s the sides you line up against in the first round of the Eliminator loaded with players from one club only!

      • You make a fair point mate. Just toying with ideas and as I said, will switch back to something that looks a little more sensible tonight. All good.

        • I press the clear button 47 times a day so I can’t really talk either ;)

          • Haha, good stuff mate. Best way to do it I reckon, start from scratch 100 times and get the trading bug out of the system before the real thing starts.

            I was in your TKOL Challenge last year so I’ve got close to half an idea how to play. Speaking of which, I need to find me a decent group to lose against every week this season too. I’m guessing yours would be well and truly closed by now.

      • Hey! Don’t complain about those eliminator teams that are a joke. It’s always good to start the season of sleeping like a baby because some – auto-fill / one club team – tool, has submitted to your team of @#$%ing champions!

      • Some people crap on about thinking outside the box, but are afraid to do it.

        I used a similar strategy to this in the past two seasons. You won’t win the car – but only one person will, and it sure as hell won’t be TKOL. I was chasing a weekly prize and managed a 5th – if Leigh Montagna had scored 90 rather than 120 in that round, I would have been $500 bucks richer (yep, all 4 of the bastards that beat me had him – grrrr.).

        The two major advantages to this strategy are a., like you said, every one of your first 6-10 trades are upgrades, and b., it doesn’t actually matter what you scored in rounds 1-6 as long as you make the 8. You’ll have made more cash than a standard team over the year so in theory you’ll have a better starting 22 by the time finals come around.

        I’m refining the strategy further this year and aiming for about 10 starting premos. Starting without Swan and Goddard paid off last year, but I’m nervous about doing it this year. I had intended to ‘let’ Buddy fall in value before picking him up this year, but last weekend scared me out of that stretegy.

        If you only do things that everyone agrees are good things to do, you are going to finish near the middle of the top, somewhere between 1000-5000 overall. You simply won’t win anything except maybe your league. Swing your balls out into the wind and take a few risks and at least you give yourself a chance to get lucky.

        • AGREE 100% this is the problem with these site people get on and read then every side looks the same you have got to take the advice from warnie and the other BUT MAKE YOUR OWN DECISIONS……

          eg martin a lids why does every1 have them ??????? because every1 on here and other sites says yeah lock lock lock……. you can keep martin and your lock he and the tigers will fail in the first 6 weeks…… price will drop quick

  • Nice write up Dunny,

    Pfeiffer will have to bust a serious nut to get into my team at this stage.

    I will be watching these players that are currently in my starting lineup:

    Smedts, Stephenson, Walsh, Wilkes, Horsley, Rowe

    Lingering ideas:

    Mackie, Hogan, Armstrong (not that hes playing!), Ross, Saad, Hayes, Magner

  • I have made a Geelong league very competitive finished in the top 300 last year anyone welcome league number is 191823 there are still 8 spots left cheers!

  • luke brown got king hit at a pub in adelaide and lost a couple of teeth, thats the reason he’s not playing this week

  • Nice one Dunny

    The problem i see with the likes of Zorko, Sheil and Treloar is that i rather them play round 1 or AT LEAST debut in round 4 minimum, its kind of a waste of a trade if you get rid of a rookie who hasnt given you much $$$, Mzungu was a great example he debuted in round 9 so he was ready to be brought in by round 11 giving the traded out rookie a nice piggy bank boost.

    • I.Smith and Puopollo both came in at rd 7, being on the bubble at rd 9, they were great!! Those two mature Hawks, combined with Lower, Martin and Stanly, won me games!

      I had a league game last year where I had to bring in two rooks for guns and they scored 100’s!!!

      • yeah the decision would be a lot easier if Sheil, Zorko ripped out 70-90’s every game but if they’re on the bubble round 4-5 your not gonna get a lot of dough

      • BUT, I Smith didnt play his 3rd game for ages after that… then smashed it! He was going to be my roughie keeper this year but I dont have the guts…

        • I don’t have the guts either. I guess your better of going a forward smokie who is playing in the midfield anyway.

  • Which teams have spots available for rookie elevations?

  • Great right up Dunny! Love the concept.
    The problem is how am I going to get any work done on Fridays after analysing all your info!!! How good would it be to do this for a living!!! Thanks Champ!

    • If I could get a job that paid well enough to do this full time, I would do it. However, the only people that do is some journalists who think they are experts but are really not that good. We need full time serious DT’ers like Warnie, Roy and Calvin!

      • i second this motion

      • One day, Dunny, one day… haha! We will staff 30 blokes writing about DT on full time wages… wouldn’t that be awesome!

        • Will I be on the roster ?
          After all I am the biggest name is DT today!

          • This sounds Familiar?

            I am TKOL. King of Dream Team and defender of the secrets of sideways trade.

            This is my team Roo’s … my fearless friend, Fabulous secret powers were revealed to me the day I held aloft my magic Master Stroke and said… By the power!

            Maximus – I have the Power! Roo’s became the Mighty Battle kangaroo, and I became Maximus the most powerful man in the Dream Team universe. Only a few others share this secret… Our friends: The Sorceress some lap dancer at the mens club, Man-At-Arms Bin Ladin, and Orko che guevara. Together we defend Castle Dream Team from the evil forces of noobs and dip sh#ts

          • lol Classic

            He-Man was the shit when I was 7.

            By the power of numbsculls!

        • has declared himself Dream Team Mail Boy and assumes one of the 30 full time wages paid positions while gaining all of the tips from incoming mail/email and not contributing much :)

        • 30’s a specific number Warnie, how many kids do you have in your classes? ;-)

          Would love a gig working as a DT Analysist, heck I do data analysis for work… If only I put as much effort into my Data Analysis at work as I do with my Dream Team haha!

        • Ahhh the dream!

  • Good work Dunny! I look forward to hearing your thoughts after the weekends games.

    I was interested to hear your take on Phiffer, it sounds like he has to pull a rabbit out of his arse and play like he is possessed. I wish.

    I am glad to hear that Brown is still in contention and that it is only because some muppet hit him that he is not in Adelaide’s team. Oh well, I’m sure he probably has a smoking hot girlfriend that got him in the trouble in the first place. She can look after him and his confidence will stay high!

    I was actually looking at Mcaffer. Being a Pies man I’d seen a lot of him in 2010 and he was in the best 22 of a premiership team. Even though he had a funny head. I have since looked at his stats and he didn’t kick three in the premiership as I thought. Big day, big week. It was one goal. Bless the @#$%!

    I have one forgotten BACKMAN for you mate. GC’s Coad. The mature player who only played two games last year and then pulled his hammy when he was cramping up and the coach decided to protect the young players.

    They sent on my dream team smokey (Coad) and killed him when he obviously was; a) better than the kids b) cramping up like the old man he is (28?)

    He averaged 70 even with an injury late in his second game, priced at 49! I held onto him last year when he didn’t play in the first few rounds, then he got injured on the bubble! It would take a brave man / fool to pick him unless he lined up from the start.

    Last year I went with the more mature GC rooks and I think it paid off. Clifton has been locked in and even the players who are only a bit; heavier, shorter and older get a look in.

    I recon’ I will look back at 2010 / 2011 and was to pay for Bruce Mcaveney to do something special to the dictator, Dimeets. (I still hate his rule adding dictator fashion.

    Yeah, still unemployed! GJB

    P.S. I left my job of 8 years one month ago. It’s been great. Only just started looking for work. Just. hahahahah

    • I had Coad from the start last year too and hated it when he was on the bubble and didn’t play again. I think that he has a great deal of potential as a great scorer in DT, but I don’t know if I can do it to myself again.

      • Me either. It is risking to much emotionally. hahahahahah

        I’d rather be burned by a player that has never let me down before.

    • I had Coad in mind as a Smokey this year until I saw the price they have him for!
      He only played 2 games, shouldn’t have warranted an average at all… Too much money for the risk unfortunately, was hoping to get him at a price similar to that of K-Hunt.

  • Geelong supercoach league avg over 2000+ per week welcome league number is 149439 cheers!

    • alright finally a league where my average qualifies – too bad i am not a cats supporter – but at least my 2011 avg made it!

  • I’m keeping an eye on Pfeiffer, Smedts, Rowe

  • I’ll be watching to see where Nicholson lines up.

  • Sorry that this is out of place, but I thought I would advertise the fact that a team has left DT TALK LEAGUE COX – so there is one spot left for a lucky person to snag


  • What’s the deal with A Treloar and A Kennedy? Sheedy forecast them in his round 1 team but they didn’t play in the NAB cup?
    Also, gone for quite a few mid-pricers this year. Thoughts on this team:
    Backs: Goddard, Shaw, Delidio, Waters, Grimes, Hargrave, Marty Clarke (Bugg, Morris)
    Mids: Swan, Ablett, Selwood/redden/rockliff, Barlow, Hayes, Macdonald (Shiel, L Brown)
    Rucks: Sandy, Giles (Big O, Rowe/Derickx)
    Forwards: Franklin, Martin, Sidebottom, Cloke, Porps, Treloar, Smedts (Saad, Kennedy (GWS))
    77.4K left over
    Thoughts on who I should choose where I have slashes indicating I’m not sure who to choose. Also, how could I get a app in my mids to forwards because I have about 5 in the feds and none in the mids

  • league code: 531 598 if any one is keen to join?

  • I think hartlett will break out. What are the odds he will avg 95+

    • I too think he will break out. If he can keep fit and healthy he will be right up there as he has great skills and gets a fair bit of it out on the wings.

  • @Dunny – As you are Port supporter how do you think Robbie Gray will go this year? I havent really considered him myself but he has a lot of potential and could definatley push a 95+ average this year…

    • To be honest I think he will go well. He could push a big average if fit. I think the only things going against him will be a fully fit Hartlett taking time off him and Brad Ebert slipping into the Midfield as well.

      However, I think he will still average well as he slips up forward and kicks goals. I won’t be having him in my team as he is frustrating to watch as a supporter, I don’t need the stress of worrying about his points too!!! I also think his price makes him very awkward to pick.

  • Really sorry for this one… Where is the watchlist found these days? I can add to it just not see it.

    Way behind in the research dept this year. Life just keeps getting busier. :(

    • do you have a full team saved and completed? I dont think you can view it while you have an incomplete team.

    • if you have a full team saved it is on the right side – a grey tab amongs others if i remember correctly.

  • Question: off topic maybe, however what time will the chat room be open? Can’t wait to see how some of the premiums go.

  • Dare I say it but I’ll be keeping an eye on K Hunt this weekend!

  • Off topic, but it Scotland worth the big $ to have him start in my team this year? Or am I better off saving ~40k by picking up Shaw instead? This will also help during the nasty round 13 bye. Thoughts?

    • Shaw…he will average more..provided he doesn’t do another Heath Shaw and will help you with R13

      • Arguable whether Shaw will average more; Scotland’s a gun, and Shaw can’t break the forward tag.

  • Different Strategy??


    DEF: R. Hargrave, A. Tomlinson, M. Clarke, B. Ellis, T. Bugg, S. Darley, B. Smedts (T. Hine, B. Wilkes)

    MID: S. Pendlebury, M. Boyd, G. Ablett jnr, S. Mitchell, S. Thompson, L. Hayes (J. McDonald, L. Neale)

    RUC: D. Cox, A. Sandilands (J. Giles, O. Stephenson)

    FWD: L. Franklin, A. Goodes, N. Fyfe, D. Martin, S. Sidebottom, J. Brown, J. Cameron (C. Hampton, A. Treloar)

    CASH LEFT: $48,500

    • interesting outlook, still has 14 premium dont see why not

    • I would drop brown for a fwd rookie and get a prem defender.

    • Its not a bad idea to go light in the backs considering that seems to be lowest scoring position, at least it was last year (only a couple of years ago with the flood in full swing it was more high scoring)

      The problem you will have is you will probably get the odd donut from all your rookies in def and that will really hurt. You probably need a couple of more mid pricers who are guarenteed best 22 if you are going to use that strategy. eg Lake, Hunt, nicholson ect

      Also you will start fast out of the blocks but u will miss all the juicy bargains from the fallen premiums thoughout the season in the mids and fwds

  • How’s Phil Davis from GWS???

    Is he good value or is he just not a DT Scorer. I didn’t hear much about him when he used to play from Adelaide.

    • Only played 18 games in his career so far. Obtained 91 DT points when he held Franklin to a goal in Round 1 2011, basically setting up the win. Remains to be seen what he’ll do this year, but hopefully Mohr will be holding down Full Back for most of the year, allowing Davis to play CHB.

  • What do you think of my team?!?!

    Def: Scotland, Goddard, Suckling, Heppel, Conca, Clarke, Bugg (L.Brown, Baguley)
    Mid: Pendlebury, Boyd, Ablett, Beams, C.Smith, Mcdonald (clifton, Gibson)
    Ruc: Sandilands, Giles (Big O, Rowe)
    Fwd: Franklin, Goodes, Zaharakis, Martin, Christenesen, Rohan, Brynes (Treloar, DellO’ilio)


  • he played his first two earlier than that i’m pretty sure, maybe even about rd 3. got into the side permanently finally and kicked butt.