Shannon Byrnes – Deck of Dream Team 2013

Name: Shannon Byrnesjan22_byrnes
Club: Melbourne
Position: Forward
Assistant Coach 2013 Price: $229,300
Bye Round: 12 (Shared with Geelong, Melbourne, North Melbourne, St Kilda, Sydney & West Coast)
2012 Average: 43.5
2012 Games Played: 4
Predicted Average: 86.5


Why should I pick him?

What the hell is the hype amongst some Dream Team coaches about Shannon Boo-urns? I mean, yes, last season Byrnes played only four games, following on from his five games in 2011, so he is heavily reduced in price. And yes, Byrnes has changed clubs from premiership contenders Geelong to cellar dwellers Melbourne. I mean, yes, he has been voted into Melbourne’s leadership group in his first year because of what he has been showing during preseason physically and is expected to play the entire season, and yeah, maybe he is only 29 and… Hmm. I think I’m starting to get it.

Priced at $25,000 less than the other club-changing popular-forward mid-priced option Chris Knights, Byrnes attraction here is value. At only $60,000 above top-rookie prices, Byrnes offers you one thing most rookies can’t – job security. Byrnes hasn’t been placed in Melbourne’s leadership group because of his ability to give a speech, he is there because it is expected that he will lead by example on the field, each and every week for the Demons.

After falling out of favour with the Geelong selection panel the past two years, Shannon has managed just 9 games in two seasons. In 2011 it was knee and calf injuries that kept him out of the line-up, but in 2012 it was simply a matter of youth before experience for the Cats. Byrnes was relegated to the VFL where he went on the war-path. In his 16 games at VFL level he didn’t drop below 18 disposals once and he applied amazing forward pressure, racking up 17 tackles against North Ballarat, and featured in the ‘best players’ voting numerous times.

Forward pressure and Melbourne Demons are two terms not often associated, unless the words lacking, none, or disgraceful are used to bind them. This is exactly what Byrnes offers the Demons, and with Chris Butter-Fingers Dawes joining the club for 2013, there should be plenty of opportunity for Byrnes to make an impact this season when the ball hits the turf.


Why shouldn’t I pick him?

Okay, so he is kind of old at 29 and he is at a new club, which always has you asking questions. He also has never had that ‘amazing season’, with his best dream team seasons coming in 2009 when he averaged 85.3 in 19 games & his next best in 2010 averaging 79.4 from 20. Then again, he was sharing the forward line crumbing roles with Ablett, Bartel, Johnson & Chapman. At Melbourne it will be Sylvia & umm. Neville Jetta? Anyway…

His price is also a little awkward. He is double what you would pay for a forward rookie, if you can find one who will play, but he won’t score double what they would; so he won’t make you as much money purely on output if you are looking for a traditional cash cow. Add to this that he has never played a full season and I am now going back to my original question, why are some coaches considering him?


Deck of DT Rating

JACK. It’s hard enough finding solid rookies in the forward line before the NAB Cup, with Macaffer, O’hAilpin & Staker all appearing in squads because of this. Even with those three there are question marks over where they fit in the best 22, and if their bodies are fully fit. With Byrnes, you don’t have those questions. He is well and truly in Melbourne’s best 22 and his body is right. Last year he smashed the VFL in tackles, scoring impacts and an ability to win the ball, averaging 23 disposals and 93 points per game. Oh, I hadn’t mentioned that? Yeah, he averaged 93 points per game in the VFL  over 16 games. That’s probably why some coaches are considering him at less than $230,000.


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  • Nice write up Griff. Another of these lower mid-priced recycled players that is worth considering – if only I could find a spot for him.

    • Beams>Pendlebury Daniher>Byrnes done.

      • Haha. Nice work. Yeah when I first saw Byrnes being traded to Melbourne I wasn’t interested, but the more you look into his work this preseason combined with his output at VFL last season, it’s really hard to ignore him unless we get some kick-ass forward rookies sticking their hand up in the NAB.

  • Great work.
    Might have to rethink my team!

  • Fark me Griff!!! That is a great write up with compelling arguments! Looks like I might have to have a rethink!!
    So much for me having a settled line up!! Haha
    Well done Griff. Love your work!!!

    • Cheers mate. Yeah I did a bit of a reshuffle myself after putting together all this research. The reality is he could (note: could, not will) average as much as Wright or Martin and they are $200,000 more expensive.

  • “Forward pressure and Melbourne Demons are two terms not often associated, unless the words lacking, none, or disgraceful are used to bind them.”

    This is a wonderful sentence.Very, very nice work.

  • so does this mean Byrnes is a better option than Knights?

    • In my opinion, yes. Knights has a higher ceiling, but at a cheaper price, and a clear role in the squad I’d expect Byrnes to at very least hold his own against Knights. At worst it’s a 50/50 call between them.

      • ok thanks, if i am going to have either of them il just make the call after NAB cup

        • Wise decision.

        • Wait and see seems like the way to go. Encouraged by his VFL form though, worth a crack I reckon. With the trade situation this year, a guy like Byrnes doesn’t pose such a risk. If he bombs, trade him for a rookie getting a game.

  • Very optimistic write up, has managed to convince me somewhat.

    If he gets within 5ppg of 86.5 I’ll be laughing. The next Porps if so, only better.

    Probably don’t have the cap space for him though, unless I go Zorko to Sylvia.

    • No, hold onto the Zork. IMHO I believe he could average 95+ which makes him a keeper forward or a great M9/10.

  • So you reckon Byrnes will average more than Goldstein?

    ‘avin a laugh.

    • He did in 08, 09 and 10.

      Only played 9 games in the last 2 years, but now finds himself in a spud team where he has the potential to. It’s not that far fetched.

      • 08, 09 and 10 were Goldy’s first three seasons in the AFL, which we all know can be pretty slow for ruckmen, while they were Byrnes’ 5th, 6th and 7th.

        And in 11 and 12, Goldy averaged 59 and 36 more than Byrnes.

  • $22900 i spoz he has to be considered…i wanna just say no!!! though…and im a sucker for players like this over rookies…but my brain just has a hard time thinking anything good can happen from picking melbourne players….even the ones that score ie grimes INJURY PRONE sylvia INJURY PRONE and tapsott as a rookie injured!!
    and theres the picking watts instead of natanui ,the tanking ,the current coach ,the past coach,criss connelly works there(coached freo and injury prone)..the colours,the song the worst brownlow medalist in history(woewodin)..the fact they might not win a flag for 100 yrs espec if they get busted for tanking ,and its hard to have anything to do with them ,and im a dt sl-t who will pick from any club ..price is right though

  • Thanks for the article Griff, just when you pass over a bloke without a second thought, you give us compelling reasons to reconsider him. It will be interesting to see how many of these mid-priced guys will end up in teams this season.

    If anything, the new trade rule will see a much more diverse range of teams at the start of this season I reckon. People with varying views on how to maximise the use of these extra trades. Last year we wouldn’t have even looked at this guy, but now he’s a genuine contender!

  • just realized he’s cheaper than varcoe
    hmm… may get a look now

    • how much you gonna save 5k? hahahahahhaha

      Great write-up Griff .. im on Boo-urns at the moment

      • every dollar counts!!

        haha but he’ll probably average more anyway… maybe. hadn’t even thought about him until now

  • anyone interested in an offline DT 2013 team builder

    email me at

  • Update: Byrnes kicked five goals as an up-the-ground roving forward in Melbourne’s intra-club today in a near BOG performance. Yes it was against his Demon team mates, but it does suggest his fitness is right up there, and his skills are polished. Well under-priced and becomes a stepping-stone to better players. His spot in the best 22 is now locked. Anyone now re-considering?

  • Byrnes or Varcoe