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Jeppa’s Juniors – 2013 Forwards

Rookie forwards will be the hardest to get right this year so let Jeppa point you in the right direction with his take on the best options available.

  • Jeppa

Its no secret that there are slim pickings by way of forward rookies this year. So how will you approach the issue? Will you pick more mid pricers? Will you go all out and pick a gun forward line? Or will you take your chances and pick three or four of the best forward rooks available?

The following rookie priced forwards aren’t necessarily going to set the DT world alight but they should get regular games this season.


stakerBrent Staker

Price: $132,600

Predicted Average: 73

After two knee reco’s, Brent Staker is finally ready to reassert himself at the Brisbane Lions. His preseason is currently on track and he will play in the NAB cup if everything continues to go to plan. Staker is definitely in the Lions best 22 and will likely play as a third tall in defense. His marking and ability to find space will make him a consistent dreamteam scorer this season. Staker will be one of the most popular selected rookie priced players this year especially with his Def/Fwd eligibility. Lock.


stringerJake Stringer

Price: $165,700

Predicted Average: 72

The Bulldogs are screaming for a key forward and I reckon they’ve found a player in Stringer. I really rate this kid. He is powerful, strong one on one and very good when the ball hits the deck. Out of all the first year forwards, Stringer looks to have the highest job security. He’s competed well in preseason thus far and will be given opportunities to shine when the season begins. He is quite expensive for someone that probably won’t score amazingly well but with no other major standouts, Stringer has to be considered.


pattonJonathon Patton

Price: $183,300

Predicted 2013 Average: 60

Patton appears to be over those injuries that hindered his fitness last year (Source). We all know he will take contested grabs, split packs open and kick goals but he is not going to have the supply in the forward line like most other key forwards. I am against picking young key position players because they usually take that little bit longer to be able to match it with their direct opponents. So I’d stay away from Patton this season if I were you.


Tom Lee

Price: $108,500lee

Predicted Average: 64

Lee is a talented mobile forward who is a dead eye in front of goals. He kicked 60 goals and averaged 80 dreamteam points in the WAFL last season. With Tom Hickey also joining the Saints in the off season, it appears that the Saints are prepared to play two ruckmen. You’d think then that Kozi’s days are numbered and Lee could be the preferred full forward. If Lee impresses in the NAB cup then I think he would be a decent forward bench option for dreamteam coaches this year.


mortonMitch Morton

Price: $164,900

Predicted Average: 69

Late last season, Morton was given an opportunity to make an impact as a small forward at the Swans. His form at the time was enough to be selected on grand final day and become a premiership player. It was well publicised that Morton was on a knife edge regarding selection going into the grand final, so it’s fair to say that he is a risky proposition. With McGlynn nearing full fitness and Led Lamb pushing his claim for regular senior games, it appears Morton will be squeezed out of Sydney’s best 22. His high price tag accompanied with his shaky job security should be enough to scare you. Pass.


mayesSam Mayes

Price: $152,200

Predicted Average: 72

Mayes is a half forward/wingman who has won early praises from some insiders at Brisbane with Mark Harvey indicating that he could play Round 1 and make an instant impact at AFL level (Source). Mayes is quick, agile and a beautiful user of the footy. He played a dozen games for North Adelaide in the SANFL last year and was named BOG in one of them. He’s a Fwd/Mid and yes he might cop some vests but there is potential here for Mayes to be a great cashcow.


lycettScott Lycett

Price: $162,300

Predicted Average: 66

Lycett has had an outstanding preseason to date and is set to take a place in the Eagles 22 while Nic Nat recovers from his groin issues.  He is no sure thing throughout the season but the new trading rules making him an interesting prospect. I’m not expecting massive scores from Lycett when he does play and his $162,300 tag is pretty steep. Personally, I don’t think he is worth picking up but I have had discussions with many who strongly disagree. Watch him closely in the NAB cup!


daniherJoe Daniher

Price: $143,200

Predicted Average: 68

Joey Daniher is a supreme forward in the making who can comfortably take the ruck duties when required. He can take a contested mark and is a very good shot for goal. He’s impressed so much in his short time at the Bombers that James Hird went on the record to say that Daniher will play more games this year than first thought (Source). With so many talls at Essendon, competition for spots is high and I’ll be surprised if Daniher plays 10+ games this year. I won’t be picking him but he could be a surprise packet.


macafferBrent Macaffer

Price: $132,600

Predicted Average: 77

Macaffer did his ACL in last year’s preseason competition and almost made a return to AFL ranks after three VFL games in August. He’s the perfect utility player. He can play back as a third tall or he can play forward and push up onto a wing. Many think Macaffer is not in Collingwood’s best 22 however, I reckon Buckley rates him. I know it’s easy for me to say this now but if you select him and he lags a little you can always trade him to a potentially higher performing rookie at a lower price. Macaffer is currently in my team as bench cover but  if he doesn’t show enough in the NAB cup then I’ll get rid of him.


growdenJosh Growden

Price: $108,500

Predicted Average: 69

Growden is widely considered as a midfielder by those at GWS but he can also play forward hence his Mid/Fwd eligibility. He’s a  good decision maker under pressure and is excellent overhead for a player of his size. Growden spent last season recovering from a broken leg and is currently coming back from hip surgery. He may just miss Round 1 selection but look out for him as the season progresses because I think he will score well once he gets going.


lambJed Lamb

Price: $108,500

Predicted Average: 66

Lamb is ready to make his mark at the Swans after two years of development in the NEAFL. He is a very good kick of the football, he’s got pace and he loves to kick a goal.  Interestingly, Lamb was played as a midfielder in the NEAFL however it’s likely he’ll play forward pocket/half forward for the Swans. Lewis Jetta said Lamb is leading the way at preseason training (Source) which great news for Dream Team coaches. Lamb will get games in 2013, some vested, some not but if he plays well, I think there is a spot for him in the Swans 22. Watch him closely in the NAB cup!


From what I am reading, both Josh Simpson and Troy Menzel won’t be anywhere near selection in Round 1 hence why I haven’t gone into them in detail above. Definitely keep an eye on these guys as the season progresses because they both will play senior football at some point this year.

Other forward rookies to watch closely in the NAB Cup include Nick O’Brien, Viv Michie, Brad Dick, Marco Paparone, Tim Membrey, Spencer White, Taylor Garner, Sam Kerridge, Lewis Johnston, Hayden Crozier, Kristian Jaksch and Amos Frank.

Look out for my post NAB cup analysis on forward rookies who looked good, rookies who struggled and those who snuck in under the radar!

I hope my articles over the past few days have allowed you to gain a better insight into the best rookie options for 2013. Happy planning!

Remember you can follow me @JeppaDT for all rookie relevant topics and more!

Defenders / Midfielders / Rucks / Forwards

A legend of the AFL Fantasy game, Jeppa provides the best rookie content on the internet, bar none! Follow the man behind the most viewed Fantasy series on the web, the Juniors, on Twitter: @JeppaDT.



  1. Avatar


    February 5, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    They cost a lot

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    February 5, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    Cheers Jeppa for all of your work in the last week! Been very helpful. At the moment I am running with Macaffer, Staker and Jake stringer in my forwards. Cheers again!

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    February 5, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    Awesome work Jeppa, especially with rookie stocks in the forwards as thin as they are, I think most people will only be going with 2-3 of these guys. Personally I have Staker and Macaffer, I also think that if Lee gets named for Round 1 he could potentially smash the easy teams that the Saints play early making you money quickly. I’ll watch all of these blokes in the NAB.

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    February 5, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    Can somebody explain why Joe Daniher isn’t a DPP Ruckman/Forward?

    • Jeppa


      February 5, 2013 at 7:58 pm

      Makes me cry too! He would have been my 4th Ruck

      • Avatar


        February 5, 2013 at 8:12 pm

        My original team had him as my 4th Ruck. I had to have a total rethink.

        • Jeppa


          February 5, 2013 at 8:13 pm

          U a fan of setanta?

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          February 5, 2013 at 8:31 pm

          He was originally listed on the AFL pre-draft as a ruckman/forward. I was a little annoyed when I saw him as a forward.

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            February 5, 2013 at 8:43 pm


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    February 5, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    there is mordouc or someone from st k who could also play round 1

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      February 6, 2013 at 3:36 am

      Brodie Murdoch, could play rd 1. Like Jeppa said when he does a write up later when the NAB games are played he may be one of those who has snuck under the radar.

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    February 5, 2013 at 9:02 pm

    Great article as always. I’ll let you guys in to a few FWD rookies I’ve been watching

    Viv Michie – Set back by injuries, a talented player who could make an early debut. Not expecting big scores and under Ross Lyon I don’t see him a great cash cow but somebody to keep on on ur list just in case.

    Tim Membrey – With Tippet out till RD13 this could see Membrey fill in that key forward role alongside Sam Reid with not too much competition. One to watch.

    Sam Dwyer – Rookie listed and not expected to play unless injuries hit hard at the Pies, but is a MID/FWD and only costs 89k, which can free up some cash elsewhere.

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      February 6, 2013 at 11:44 am

      I’m all for picking actual rookies, but with 2 trades per week you’re gonna have to be making cash from the get go. You can’t afford to have a rookie not playing even if he is a triple position player.

      Will be keeping my eyes on Viv too.

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      February 6, 2013 at 5:47 pm

      Really liked Viv Michie in the preseason two years ago and had him in my team then. Had to let him go when he got a hand injury sometime early so I will be grabbing him if he is around this time.

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    February 5, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    If you could choose 3 of them to have in your team for now, who would it be?

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      February 6, 2013 at 11:46 am

      I’ve gone Staker the ligament breaker, Macaffer, and Lee. I think Lee has the biggest upside, but will need to have an awesome pre-season comp to prove he is in the best 22 and get games early.

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    February 5, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    Staker, Macaffer and Growden for me.

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      February 5, 2013 at 9:41 pm

      Watch Growden. He should be good to go at some stage during the NAB Cup, but the GWS list is getting awfully competitive for spots. GWS may give him extra time to recover and debut him a bit later in the season. I’ll seek out more info though.

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    February 5, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    Nick Hayes???

    • Avatar


      March 14, 2013 at 1:27 pm


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    February 5, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Nice write up Jep. Patton is the one who is on my radar. The GWS boys were all talking him up heavily when I caught up with them last week. Injury free, solid pre-season, tearing up the track and only $180,000 for a first round draft pick in his second year due to being under-done last season. With Izzy out of the way, at 102kg, 191cm & 19 years old, he could bust out a few big scores early, rocket in price, and earn you a pretty penny in the process.

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    February 6, 2013 at 3:15 am

    The way my team has worked out my forward and back lines are pretty much all mid pricers and premiums, and mids 4 premiums and the rest rooks/mid pricers.

    Obviously the best rooks are midfielders.

    So is this a good strategy…considering the best rooks are midfielders and I have near finished forward and back lines..

    Or a bad strategy because I have a weak midfield?

    • Avatar


      February 6, 2013 at 5:54 pm

      A few midpricers will make some decent money but most won’t make as much as rookies. It is a hard choice but for me I only pick mid-pricers that can make cash or I end up stuck with them and wishing I had someone good or a clear rookie to downgrade them to sometime soon.

      It will be different this year with fewer rookies but that means it is even more important not to miss out on one that makes good cash. Last year missing Milera for example didn’t kill you but this year the points and the quick dollars will be crucial. If you get the mid-pricers right good luck to you, someone will, but it is a bigger risk than a couple of rookies – even the ones that don’t do well still make way more $$ than a mid-pricer who does a bit better.

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      March 18, 2013 at 11:04 pm

      i have gone exactly the same as you with 2 mid pricers each in my fwd and back lines as i feel there is some good value there this year. B Goodes is my only playing rookie down back as i have don’t have confidence in many of the rookies either
      While my midfield is slightly weaker (only 3 premos and 2 $450000) and 3 rookies i feel this is where a lot of your money is going to be made and the rookies are good enough this year that they will score 70-80 consistently which is better than a few sub-affected 20-30’s each week from fwd and back rookies

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    PoRk KnucKle

    February 6, 2013 at 11:21 am

    great info jepp. it does suck these blokes are relatively quite expensive, bit of pressure to get it right in the fwd line!

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    February 6, 2013 at 11:39 am

    Oh Brett Staker. I can see it now. Me and everyone else will pick you. You will average 52 with odd games out due to injury, and I will be surpassed by all those who chose an alternative unique rookie. #Inevitability

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    February 6, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    Stringer won’t average anywhere near 72.

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      February 8, 2013 at 7:25 pm

      Jeppa’s the expert mate not you

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    February 6, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    I think I will go for midfield rookies and stick to two in forwards and backs. Will cost me a lot of points but hopefully I will make the $$ quickly.

    One thing that has to be said about forwards is that when planning you can depend on many a gun forward to have one crap week (or two) and drop in price over the subsequent weeks, that is a way to get closer to the team you want with limited dollars. This way a plan to improve them over a month or two is possible with the trades the way they will be this year.

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    February 7, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    would love some thoughts on chris knights at $254k?

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    Wilbert Bakebad

    February 12, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    4 rookies in my forward line, growden, mayes, menzel and staker.

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    February 14, 2013 at 1:33 am

    Great write up mate.

    Also keep an eye on Close at Brisbane- good reports from a mate who lives over there….

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    Next T

    February 24, 2013 at 9:14 am

    Thoughts on Sam Kerridge? predicted score and will he get enough of a run?

    • Avatar

      Next T

      February 24, 2013 at 10:06 pm

      Any thoughts on sam kerridge would be much appreciated? thanks

      • Avatar


        March 11, 2013 at 9:13 pm

        Stay away from Kerridge, he won’t get much of a run this year. Tough forward line to break into at Adelaide. If he does get a game or two, I would expect it to be later in the year.

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