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Loyalty Amongst Dream Team Coaches

Dream Team Talk regular Anthony takes a look at the difficult decision on selecting second year players in your starting line-up. Why should you stay loyal to a cash cow, and who is worth a second go in your team?


Written by: Anthony Smith

Like many dream team coaches I watched with great interest as the AFL’s first Free Agency period unfolded, wondering what the fall out would mean for our Dream Team players.

As predicted, many players left their clubs searching for more on-field opportunity. But some were lured away from our clubs by the all mighty dollar, leading many to question how important loyalty is to our players and clubs. This led me to ask myself, is there any loyalty in Dream Team?

Specifically; I’m thinking about our cash cows. Now as we know, our cash cows are there to be bought at basement rookie prices, score well, earn cash and then let us sell them off to upgrade to a premium keeper!

But occasionally we stumble across a rookie who is scoring well enough and slips through the ‘upgrade’ net. These guys are there for you, providing cover, those much needed extra points and sometimes even getting you across the line in tough head to head match ups. While we are thankful for anything they can give us we always remember only paying $104,000 for them not so long ago.

Then comes the next season, we’re busy looking for new, fresh rookies while our old players are moving into that awkward mid-priced 2nd year bracket. Most of the time we wont even stop to consider them as we scroll from the premiums down to get to the rookies on our team picker. So this article is just me playing a little devils advocate and giving a voice to some of these 2nd year future guns.

First we’ll look at an example of why we should maybe give these guys another run.

Example: Nathan Fyfe.
2010 – MID/FWD $282,900
Fyfe debuted in 2010 providing decent cover to our forward lines with an average score of 68 points per game. This took him into his 2nd season with an awkward price tag of $282,900 which was enough to make a lot of coaches overlook him initially. But that was the cheapest Fyfe would be that year, going on to average 98 points per game, and being a significant part of many coaches successful season that year. So this is who we are looking for; another Fyfe. PS, 2013 – MID $458,500.

So who have we got to potentially save us in their second year, and who do we stay loyal to?

Candidate: Devon Smith.
MID/FWD $352,100
Smith was a source of annoyance to many coaches last year. It seemed that if you played him he’d cop a vest or not score, but if you benched him he’d bang out a 100… for your opponent. Smith showed an ability to score in a team often getting beaten and even though he copped a couple of vests, he still played 20 games for the Giants. Escaping the dreaded revolving door of rotations Sheedy had implemented, going on to average a decent 68 points per game. (Look familiar?)

Candidate: Kyal Horsley
MID $385,600
debuted at the perfect time for us last year and jumped out of the gates, averaging 106 points in his first four games. By then we had all brought in ‘The Horse’ and then watched on as he only cracked 80 once more, finishing the year with an average of 74. In all honesty Kyal seems pretty risky, but he does have the ability to be great. Plus his job security seems pretty secure after being promoted to the senior list at the end of last season and taking out the Suns ‘Most Professional’ and ‘Iron Man’ club awards.

Candidate: Brandon Ellis
DEF $300,300
While Ellis only finished the year with an average of 57 points per game, I feel that he has the potential to score a lot higher this year. He has a lot of upsides working for him. Firstly and most importantly, Hardwick loves him. Meaning excellent job security, already playing every game in his debut season except one. Secondly, he is a very hard runner (15.4 in the beep test) and was already pushing into the mids last season. With a full season and now second pre season under his belt I’m really looking forward to the next level this kid can take his game (and DT scores).

Candidate: Toby Greene
MID $495,700
I couldn’t write on this subject without mentioning this mini-gun. Priced very high for a 2nd year player due to his 96.2 point average this kid will be overlooked by a lot of coaches, meaning he could be a very important point of difference. I don’t think I need to say much more about this kid (well, not more than what Griff has been saying on twitter), except that he’ll probably win a brownlow sometime between now and the next 4 years…

Also consider these guys;
Candidate: Dayne Zorko MID/FWD 95 point avg $487,800
Candidate: Sam Gibson MID 90 point avg $468,400
Candidate: Lee Spur DEF 66 point avg $342,400
Candidate: Tomas Bugg DEF 68 point avg $352,100
Candidate: Tory Dickson FWD 68 point avg $349,400

So that’s just a couple of 2nd year players who could possibly be the next Fyfe! I hope this article has thrown a few more players onto your watchlist! Cheers for reading, and you can find me on twitter if you want to continue the conversation further.

All the best for season 2013!

Born Adelaide, Lived Darwin, Resides Canberra. A Crows fan as a child, I have became a big supporter of the GWS Giants in their foundation year. I love my footy, multimedia design and beer(s).



  1. Avatar


    January 10, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    What I mentioned on twitter today:
    Toby Greene averaged 110 in #AFLDreamTeam & 112 in #SuperCoach in his final 8 games of 2012, in his debut season, at 18, with no preseason. In 2013 Toby Greene has had a full preseason, has improved his endurance, winning the first 3km time trial, is fitter & has added bulk. Taking out Greene’s four poorest games (50, 54, 72 & 70 – all in games Giants got thumped) his average jumps to 105 #AFLDreamTeam points.

    Nice article Anthony, and certainly gives us something to think about!

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      January 10, 2013 at 5:06 pm

      Nice article Anthony, Greene is definitely on my radar as a POD. I was locking Treloar before he was named as a pure Mid. Great Job.

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        January 10, 2013 at 5:44 pm

        Cheers, yeah it was hard not to include the entire GWS list, they just have so much potential!
        Should be a great season

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        January 10, 2013 at 7:23 pm

        Treloar’s average in the second half of the year was exceptional…

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          January 10, 2013 at 8:36 pm

          Treloars season end was good, but it mainly felt better than it was because he was covering for Buddy.

          Treloar played 18 games, Greene played 19 games
          Treloar averaged 90.25 compared to Greene’s 110 in his final eight games. Or to make it look better…
          Treloar averaged 104.0 per game in his final six, Greene averaged 105.8.
          Treloar scored more than 100 only four times last season, Greene did it eight times.
          Treloar’s highest was 121, Greene’s was 146.
          Treloar’s top three disposals: 37, 32 & 26 (x4)
          Greene’s top three disposals: 38 (x2), 35 & 34.
          Treloar’s top three scores: 121, 119 & 112
          Greene’s top three scores: 146, 125 & 122

          Anyway… If you were considering Treloar or Greene, I know who I would go.

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            January 12, 2013 at 3:47 pm

            WOA!!..rlgriffin has just put in more pre season with 2 gws players than i will do for the start to the season..espec with 2 trades every week
            ill watch the nab cup ,read dt talk deck etc,and go off the record anything more than that hurts my brain

            ill prob finish in the top 40/50k mark as usual and wont win my family or friends league

            but to answer warnies question on twitter about the rolling lockout in dtpro last yr ,i won the granny(my first of any kind) and i didnt know about the rolling lockout all yr untill the week before the final ,when the other bloke told me ,if i had to id vote against it but you have to be able to have emerg’s to cover late changes or it becomes a joke
            if you went off the teams named last yr on thursday u got screwed for sure..if u logged bk in friday and made changes u still got screwed by late changes ,just not as many times

            so id rather it be all the players on your bench play if they are needed ,naming the player as emerg only to have him not play and the other one play and score enough to get u over the line is just stupid ,because we are all going off who is named

            and if someone is subd and the bench player scores more we should get that score,thats the fairest way i can see doing it ..and im a yes vote for 44 trades ,shaw,broughton etc etc have killed me ,so i like it ..good move virtual sports

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    January 10, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    Tory dickson finished alot better than he started didnt he? so it would be interesting to see if he cotinues his better dt form, possibly 75 + average

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      January 10, 2013 at 5:48 pm

      Yeah, it’s the same with Lee Spur. Averaged 66 for the season but finished his last 4 games with a 77 point average.
      It’s always encouraging when they finish the season strong. Just have to hope they pick up where they left off!

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    January 10, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Taking Zorko in, he is a machine. Will average 100+ this year. Greene is tempting but will pass.

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      Dream on!

      January 10, 2013 at 9:30 pm

      Definitely considering him as a bit of a POD. Averaged just under 100 without his sub match and had an injury-interrupted preseason and start to the season. Only worry is if Moloney and Rocky returning to the mids will force Zork to spend more time forward (think Daisy or Rocky in 2012).

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    January 11, 2013 at 11:09 am

    I think that the thing to remember here is that Fyfe is the exception to the rule, most second year players struggle to improve their averages by much, i guess that with 2 trades per week it could take a little of the danger of getting it wrong away.

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    January 12, 2013 at 2:26 am

    Wont be going any second year players myself although Zorko is very tempting.Was also impressed with Jamie Elliott,The kid loves to tackle and is at a DT friendly team and also Taylor Adams,Think he avg’d around 87 in his last 7 if you take out his sub affected game

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    January 13, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    What are your thoughts on Chad Wingard? Priced at $249,500 Mid only and averaged close to 50 points last season, including a strong finish to the season with scores of 64, 90, & 70 in the last three games. Does anyone else think he’ll improve from last season and maybe push to around 65-70 points this season?

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      January 13, 2013 at 9:57 pm

      Wingard could be a very unique choice. As always you’ll have to watch NAB to check his role.
      How many mid pricers are you considering though?
      My concern is that floating around his price is also Embley, Stevens, Lucas and Gysberts who all may be better options.

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        Dream on!

        January 13, 2013 at 10:04 pm

        Yep, Embley being 15k more basically rules out Wingard. I had Wingard last year and he just wasn’t good enough, especially considering I payed 164k or something like that.

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