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Versus – Round 3: Broughton v Heppell

Robdog is following in the footsteps of our man McRath looking at a Versus article of Greg Broughton v Dyson Heppell. Both players are very similarly priced and both offer some value as defenders who could could potential get a bit of midfield time in 2012.

After reading the comments of the previous two ‘Versus’ articles by McRath their seemed to be a lot of support and a push for the continuation of these articles. So following the basic blueprint laid out by McRath I have put together this article opposing two players that may well step into the top echelon of dream team defenders this year.

Following some reading of comments in both the ‘My Team’ post and the DoDT articles of both Greg and Dyson respectively, it appears that these two players are really fighting it out for that D4/5 position. Placed at almost the exact same price, with the same bye, both players provide obvious upside and could be in line for big years. In saying that which one will you be recruiting to fill one of those precarious defender spots in 2012? Hopefully this article will help you decide just that.

Greg Broughton

Price – $416,200
Position – Def
Bye Round – 12
Age – 25

2011 Details:
Average –
Games played – 21
High Score – 149
Low Score – 46
No. of 100+ scores – 6
No. of sub 70 scores – 8

Dyson Heppell

Price – $415,900
Position – Def
Bye Round –12
Age – 19 (20 in may)

2011 Details:
Average –
Games played –22
High Score – 108
Low Score –52
No. of 100+ scores – 5
No. of sub 70 scores –4

Scoring Potential& Consistency:

Over the course of Broughton’s 3 years in the AFL he has shown the dream team world that he has huge scoring potential, and from what was seen in 2011 a much higher ceiling than Heppell, clearly represented by Greg’s HS of 149 compared to Dyson’s 108. The downside of Broughton is however, that he can consistently score sub par scores, as shown in the first 8 and last 5 rounds of 2011 where he averaged just 64. In fact even in Broughton’s purple match mid season he knocked out 3 games of 90 or below including one, which was sub 50, just highlighting his inconsistency. Heppell showed us all in his debut year that he may not have the scoring potential of Broughton but what he lacks there he certainly makes up for in his consistency of high standard games, hitting the 90+ mark an incredible 9 times in his debut year. Sure 90 isn’t a huge score but keep in mind that Fyfe (a similar type of silky outside player with a strong grab, however in a amore attacking manner) reached the 90 mark just 3 times and averaging only 68 in his debut year before upping his average to 98 in just his second season.And with a solid pre season in the gym and on the track surely we can expect Heppell to enhance his ceiling and build on his scoring potential, right?

The graphs below show both Greg and Dyson’s scores from each round, clearly highlighting the disparity of consistency between the two.

Round 1 goes to……. Heppell, just, for his above par consistency and likelihood to increase his scoring potential and ceiling. However if Broughton added some consistency to his game then he definitely seems to have greater upside due to his higher ceiling. (Score: 0-1)


Not really too much too say here considering both players are still very early on in there careers, entering there 2nd and 4th careers respectively. However it is worth noting that since his debut Broughton has missed 13 of a possible 64 games and has struggled with different injuries at times throughout his 3year career. Dyson however seemed to show great durability playing in all 23 of Essendon’s games in his first season despite rumors going around pre draft day 2010 that he was struggling with an injury.

Round 2 goes to……. Once again it’s Heppell, but with not much to go off I wouldn’t be paying too much attention to this category. (Score: 0-2)


Being two of the minimal defenders not sharing the round 13 bye both represent great value, money and structural wise, provided they average in excess of 90 that is. As it is expected both will do this it can be assured that they probably wont be too much cheaper throughout the season, however probably wont rise too much either unless they really push their avg. to in excess of 95+

Round 3 goes to…… Broughto, if he can add some consistency to his game he offers incredible value, but we will need to see how Ross Lyon uses him first.

(Score: 1-2)


The words an pictures leaking out from Essendon are representing that Heppell is having an incredible pre season and is in absolute tip top shape and is gearing up for another big year and looking to build on his debut season. Ross Lyon appears to be giving away nothing over in the west with minimal to no news on Broughto, or any of his teammatesfor that matter. Which is probably a good thing considering Greg’s history of getting injured because if there had been an injury you would think it would be reported?

Round 4 goes to…… Once again nothing to really go off here but given the hype on Heppell’s pre season he wins out in this category. (Score: 1-3)

Team Draw:

Both teams seem to face relatively easy draws in 2012 with Essendon playing 10 games at Etihad and 7 games at the ‘G’ through the course of the season (where Heppell averages 82.33 and 92.25 respectively), meanwhile, like always, Freo will play 12 games at Patersons (where Greg has averaged 91 over the course of his 29 games there).

Now looking to the teams that they play twice, in brackets is there average against that team and from how many games:

Essendon & Heppell: Collingwood (102/2), Richmond (105/2), Port (102/1), Carlton (81/2), North (58/1) – in total 91.875/8

Freo and Broughto: Port (96/3), West Coast (92.4/5), Adelaide (88.5/4), Richmond (82/3), Melbourne (60.33/3) – in total 85.05/18

When scanning over the fixture it seems as though Essendon have a larger portion of easier games in the first 11 rounds with Freo being the opposite, leading to Broughton perhaps being an upgrade target post Rd 12 and starting with Heppell a better option

Round 5 goes to…… Heppell, with minimal travel and a better average against the team he faces twice I would assume that Heppell would be the better option for a starter if deciding by this category. (Score: 1-4)


Overall I believe that both will push for an average of 90+ and slip into the top 10 defenders come years end if they stay fit. However given the unknowns of Lyon’s game plan & Broughton’s knack of slipping into a lockdown defender roll, coupled with his inconsistency, hangs huge question marks over his head going into the 2012 season, making Heppell the safer and better choice in my opinion. Let us know your thoughts and comments below, feedback appreciated. (Once again thanks to McRath because I wouldn’t of been able to write this without the structure he set in his first two of these articles)

Good luck to all for the 2012 season


Broughton and Heppell: Who will you be picking?

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