Here we are, unusually poised in the midst of a split round and already we’ve had one excellent footy match to whet our appetite for the coming weekend. There hasn’t been a great deal of breaking news this week, just plenty of fallout from one of the biggest weekend’s of carnage that we’ve experienced for a while – Cyclone FMDT anyone? Let’s have a quick look-see at how the week’s unfolded.
ANZAC Day: Epic!
Collingwood v Essendon lived up to the ANZAC tradition, with no quarter given in an extremely tight contest that came down to the wire. By now, you’ll have read match report upon match report, so rather than bore you with yet another match report, let’s highlight a few DT-worthy points to take away from the game.
Dane Swan. He is a DT god. Never doubt him again. Ever. Most of the time, he’ll roam around the ground looking like a lost puppy, but don’t let his on-field demeanor fool you. Pendles is all class and a real Mr Reliable in Dream Team. Sidey is staking his claim as a must-have FWD. Keep an eye on Beams – if he strings together a few 90+ point games, he’s worth a look too. Don’t stress too much about Marty Clarke; I doubt he’ll be used as a tagger in very often, although he was remarkably effective.
Dyson Heppell is looking better and better with every game this year and is one to watch if you want a unique-ish defender. If you got Stanton in for his high ceiling (like I did), just be wary that he does have a quiet game here and there when he cops a hard tag (see above regarding Clarke). Pre-season FWD/MID MPP fan fave Zaharakis has had a couple of quiet rounds, but looked good yesterday. At a sub-$400k price tag, he is worth considering in the next couple of weeks.
Oh Vice-Captain, My Vice-Captain
If you slapped the ‘VC’ on Swannie yesterday, there’s absolutely no question that you’ll already have stood on your study table shouting ‘oh vice-captain, my vice-captain’, will be keeping his score and probably be leapfrogging up the leader board come end-of-lockout this weekend. Unless you’re the unluckiest coach ever, you should be able to find someone who isn’t playing to slap with the ‘C’. If you’re um-ing and ah-ing about Pendles, have another read of Calvin’s Captains to see if @CalvinDT has earmarked anyone else you may have in your squad in his juicy picks. Failing that, I’d stick with the mad Irish pirate’s VC caveat – 120 points is the cut-off for keeping your vice-captain’s score!
Every season we expect injuries, suspensions, rests, etc to cause us coaches a few headaches in a phenomenon commonly known as ‘FMDT’. They usually come in small doses and they are likewise usually manageable with bench cover and maybe a trade or two. However, 2012 has kicked off with the Dream Team equivalent of the Eyjafjallajokull volcanic eruption, with FMDT reigning supreme for the past few weeks. As the sky fell on our heads, teams were grounded, the value of certain players fell dramatically, aspirations of moving up the rankings were dashed and many a grown man was reduced to a bubbling mess.
Let’s do a roll call of the DT-relevant players who have featured so far, in no particular order, through injuries and suspension. Keep in mind that this horror list doesn’t even include our vested cash cows or those struck down with General Softness!
Injured: Fyfe, GAJ, Mummy, Birchall, Berger, Carrazzo, Heater, Dempsey, Gray.
Suspended: J-Mac, Goodes, Lake, Grimes.
There will have been quite a few coaches with a combination of those aforementioned players who have really suffered through the last fortnight. It seemed to peak last Friday eve when Mummy was withdrawn and the Tweetvine went into DT chatter overdriver, but then hit again with Carrots going down for 1 point during the round. It’s been a rough old start to the season and we can be certain that there’s plenty more to come, particularly as we get to the bye rounds, so take a deep breath and brace yourselves for one hell of a ride! Don’t be scared to tweet your #FMDT moments either – not only is it therapeutic, but you can be sure that there will be quite a few other coaches who share your pain.
One thing I’m mindful of is to try not to re-hash what the other guys have covered. So if you are still debating about whether or not to trade GAJ out, have a read of @camosmith‘s The Ablett Theory. If you’re having an existential crisis about the meaning of Dream Team, take the time to peruse Supermufacho’s On why Dream Team is not (really) about winning…. If you really feel that you’ve got nothing left to give, I hear these guys are always looking for fresh meat…
If you’ve been on a desert trek through the Sahara or have just surfaced from a good old self-imposed Interweb ban, you may have missed the masses of news about how Mummy’s sore back was caused by a reaction to a cortisone injection that was meant to ease his pain. He misses again this week, so if you still have him, look at moving him on. I’d love for him to prove me wrong, but I don’t think this is something that he’ll be able to completely shake in the short term. Mummy’s mobility will be affected while his back recovers, so don’t expect big scores from him for a few weeks if you do decide to persist with him.
Pick Me! Pick Me!
Picking which rooks to play is becoming less of a guessing game now with a few rounds behind us to help make more informed decisions. Yes, they’re rookies, and there will be some random scores among them, but a few of these guys are looking half-decent. In defence, Bugg and Ellis are solid, followed by Morris, Hombsch and Mohr. J-Mac, Magner and Miles take the first line in the midfield, with Shiel not too far behind. Jon Giles is now streets ahead in the rookie ruck ranks, end of story. Adam Treloar is marginally ahead of Dev Smith up front, then Kennedy, Milera and Hall.
Anyways, that’s the rub for this week. Let’s hope the DT gods are kinder to us this weekend than last, with minimal carnage and decent scoring. Feel free to add any news bits, rants, raves, etc below to stoke the fire. See ya next Thursday for another bout of media trawling and good luck this round!
Any questions, suggestions, general chit-chat or spelunking advice for next week’s Extra?
Hit me up on the Tweetvine: @TeeTeeDT