Name: Christian Howard
Club: Western Bulldogs
Assistant Coach 2013 Price: $309,100
Bye Round: 11 (shared with Brisbane, Freo, Hawthorn, Richmond and Port Adelaide)
2012 Average: 60.0
2012 Games Played: 11
Predicted Average: 75 -80
Why should I pick him?
For those of you who are wondering A) who Christian Howard is and B) Why Howard is in the deck – here’s why.
Christian Howard is a young Bulldogs defender who was pick 15 in the 2009 draft. Howard didn’t play a game in 2010 due to injuries, but made his debut in 2011, playing 6 games and backed it up in 2012 with 11. Howard should of probably played more Football in 2012 had he not injured himself in round 1 but came back in round 12 and played all but 2 games for the rest of the season and finished with an average of 60. Referring to Howard in the 2012 Prospectus (while I patiently wait for the new one) Freako notes that he was ranked 2nd at Williamstown for uncontested marks once he made his AFL debut in 2011. Hopefully this boy likes to play a DT friendly role and will keep getting loose – surely he learnt something off departing dogs Hargrave and Lake?
While he did put up some less than desirable numbers like 39, 48 and 42 in the second half of the 2012 season, he was in a young team who was likely experimenting with roles in the team and getting spanked every week. (experimenting roles and getting spanked – ha!). When Howard was let loose, he showed his DT potential with a high of of 102 points against Geelong which included 28 disposals, 6 marks and 2 goals. With the old dog Ryan Hargrave departing from the dogs in 2012, Howard is likely near the top of the list to replace Hargrave’s quarter back role in the dogs or move up to a wing as he builds his aerobic tank and establish himself in the bulldogs best 21.
Howard is priced at a 60 average, which I think he can eclipse if he is in the right role and if he stays on the park consistently – which I think he is very capable of.
Why shouldn’t I pick him?
Firstly – he is super awkwardly priced. At $300k he is likely going to give you a potential similar output to a rookie for almost triple the price and this is why he will be very unique in 2013. If he does manage to achieve an 80 average in DT – is he a keeper? Can you make cash quicker with a cheaper cash cow in the same period of time? The questions to all these answers will probably help you make the decision to not pick him.
Howard will also be in a young Bulldogs team who are likely to be on the end of a few more spankings before they start to rise back up the ladder which generally doesn’t bode well for DT (despite the ball likely to be in their backline frequently). There is a lot of unknown in this bulldog and for the price, is not really worth the risk.
Deck of DT Rating.
JACK – Picking Christian Howard in your initial squad is a massive risk. He’ll cost you almost 3 times the price of a rookie and could take too long to mature in cash compared to said rookie, although can easily be traded down to an upcoming rookie and is unlikely to lose any cash.If you do, however pick the young Bulldog, it is in the hope he can average north of 85 and become a keeper. He will be a very unique pick, a good POD and is currently in my team ( it is only January and he suits a strategy). Like every player in the AFL (excluding Dawson) he is on my watchlist and am looking forward to seeing his role in NAB, and whether that is DT friendly and will transfer into the real season.