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Versus – Round One

In our first Versus of the year, it’s a look at the cheaper options for trading Riewoldt that can help you fix other areas of your team.

Welcome to the round one edition of versus on the back of what was the best opening round in years, at least Fantasy wise. But it could have been better if the rookies pulled their weight. They will be the centre of attention for many this week. Another problem which demands fixing is Nick Riewoldt. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’d have heard by now that Roo will spend up to six weeks on the sidelines. With two trades every week in AF, he is a must trade. Today, we’ll look at two options who are categorised as sub-premiums – Gold Coast’s Touk Miller and St.Kilda’s Jack Steele along with two leading forward rookies.


Touk Miller ($504,000) V Jack Steele ($442,000)  

2017 has been touted as a breakout year for Touk Miller for a while now. A second-round pick in 2014, Miller made a good first impression in his debut season, playing all 22 games for an average of 72 Fantasy points. Last year, this increased to to 80 from 17 outings. Miller is smaller than the modern-day prototype midfielder at 178cm but has had no problem adjusting to the physicality of the AFL competition. At the end of last year, Miller benefited from added midfield time as a result of the Suns growing injury list. He produced scores of 135, 84, 111, 87, 75, 139, 105 and 98 in the final two months, grabbing this opportunity with both hands. Rodney Eade later went on to declare that Touk would spend more time in there in 2017. Well, the time has come. It was announced earlier in the week that Pearce Hanley and brother Cian would return to Ireland for personal reasons. This opens up a more permanent spot for Miller who will accompany the likes of Aaron Hall, Gary Ablett, Jarryd Lyons and Michael Barlow. That line-up, along with a very promising host of depth youngsters form a pretty formidable midfield when all are fit and firing. The supposed break-out season has got off to a promising start with Miller hitting he ton in the Q-Clash thanks to 27 disposals, 4 marks, 5 tackles and a goal. This year, more than any, has seen coaches start with very ‘vanilla’ based teams. It’s guys like Miller, currently owned by under 10% of coaches, who will put you ahead of the pack if in fact they do have breakthrough years. Nailing these types of players is key. It’ll be interesting to see how the newly installed round nine byes unfold. Whilst they may prove to be annoying at the time, having someone who will play when 16 other sides take a break will be a weapon. Lets’s hope he can maintain his current form. An average of 95 is on the cards.

Image result for jack steele st kilda

Doubt was cast over Jack Steele’s output this season given he has never found the consistency to match potential. He was pushed out the door by the Giants after struggling for opportunity after injuries set-in. But the Giants Academy member looked to have a big future after making his debut in round 12 2015. He later went on to play the next five AFL games. A small scattering of coaches started the 2016 season with him in their forward lines, expecting his obvious promise to come to fruition. However those owners would have given him the flick after scoring just 47 in round one. As expected, he did not survive the cut for the following week. Despite pumping out a few 80’s in his ten games, exit loomed likely and the Saints did not hesitate after Steele nominated them as his destination of choice. The move was completed with St.Kilda trading GWS their 2017 second round selection. After strong form in the JLT series and a great debut, that deal is already looking like a steal (pardon the pun). Steele’s tackling ferocity has always been a trademark. He thrives on the contested ball and loves a goal. During his two years at the Giants, Steele spend a considerable amount of weeks on the pine with foot and hand issues. But when he was fit, Steele proved he was too good for the NEAFL competition. He was regularly in the bests, often reaching 30 disposals and always tackling his heart out. His work rate was excellent and continued to improve as the season dragged on. I personally question the Giants decision to let Steele go, especially now given the injury woes affecting Coniglio, Deledio and Mzungu. However there’s not much a club can do if the player states his intentions to leave in the quest of more game time. If he was kept on-board, perhaps the opportunity to blood Academy members Tim Taranto and Matthew Kennedy would not have surfaced. But what is perhaps Greater Western Sydney’s loss, has emerged as a likely win for the seaside-based Saints. He adds muscle to the midfield and offers Fantasy coaches with a timely sub-premium option. With teammate Nick Riewoldt a must trade, Steele must be in your considerations for a replacement. He scored 94 on debut with perhaps under-par tackle numbers (4). Expect an average of 90. Will be a more-than-handy F6 come the end of the season.

Verdict: It was announced yesterday that David Armitage will miss the clash with West Coast (Source). This further enhances Jack Steele’s appeal, given his midfield minutes will greatly increase. This is part of the reason I’d go for Steele here. By going for the Saint, it saves you $62,000 – potentially vital funds which could be used on trading in better rookies than the popular gang.

Will Hoskin-Elliott ($258,000) Alex Neal-Bullen ($288,000)

Will Hoskin-Elliott was one of many high draft picks, taken by GWS, that have since moved on to other clubs. Although he did not join Carlton like many Giants have. Rather, the former-Western Jet under-18 elected for the Westpac Centre of Collingwood – the club he idolised as a young kid. Additional playing time was the overriding aim of the trade. WHE is a genuine utility. His game against Richmond where he had stints on the wing, off half-back and across the forward line further illustrated that. Will has always had excellent speed, endurance and two-way running ability, but consistency has been his achilles heel. Throughout his football career, Hoskin-Elliott has never been a massive ball winner. As a result, he has a season high average of 67 which he achieved in 2014 of the back of 20 games. Then the injuries struck. Quad problems and hamstring complaints plagued him throughout 2016 and ensured he featured just twice for the Giants senior side. Despite showing good signs in his ten games for the reserves, he was unable to break into a strong lineup. Now that job security doesn’t seem to be much of an issue, he was automatically considered by many Fantasy coaches. And those who didn’t select him ahead of the years first lockout should be looking to bring him in as soon as possible. The rookie stocks are simply too thin this year and spending cash on more expensive rookies has already proven to be the right way to go. The instalments of Aish and Broomhead to the Magpies 22 may force Hoskin-Elliott to spend more time across the backline. Although it was awesome to watch for owners, don’t expect him to pump out 90+ every round. He never has done. But what we can expect to see is 65+ scores. A BE of 2 will ensure plenty of cash is made for the next few weeks. Arguably the best rookie available, Hoskin-Elliott should be right at the top of the priority list.

Image result for alex neal bullen

Is this guy the answer to our forward line woes? I must admit, I didn’t know much about the 21-year-old before sitting up and taking notice after the Saturday arvo meeting between the Saints and Demons. Let’s just say, if he walked down the street, I certainly wouldn’t of known he was a Melbourne AFL player. That’s not an easy feat to accomplish given the modern-day media coverage of Australia’s game. But his popularity amongst Fantasy owners is at an all-time high. Neal-Bullen was taken by the Dee’s with pick 40 of the 2014 National Draft. Throughout his under-18 year, in which he represented South Australia and Glenelg, Neal-Bullen was a consistent performer. An inside-midfielder, Alex proved to be a ball magnet in and under packs but a lack of pace saw him fly under the radar of recruiters despite posting big numbers. Since making the transition into the AFL, Neal-Bullen has spent the majority of his time playing for the Dees VFL affiliate – Casey. Last year he finished equal fifth in the J.J Liston Trophy after averaging 29 touches for the year, underlining his importance to the Scorpions on-ball brigade whilst also spending some time across half forward. Neal-Bullen’s tackling, ball winning and endurance (as shown by a top three placing in the clubs pre-season 3km time trial) were on show in the round one encounter in which he was brilliant, collecting 23 disposals, 5 marks, 6 tackles and booting a goal to conclude a successful outing with 110 Fantasy points. It could well have been more had he converted the other three chances. At $288,000 with BE of -2, Alex is another example as to why you should look at spending up on the rooks. Although it is too hefty of a fee for some, he will act as a solid stepping stone as the season rolls on. We potentially have another culprit of the third year break out which continues to attract evidence. Neal-Bullen is almost the perfect Fantasy player. He gets heaps of the pill, as has been mentioned, and looks to have fairly strong job-security. I love him as an option. He should double his career games tally which currently sits at 15. One of very few rookies with obvious scoring potential, he will be comfortably mid-priced come the end of the season. 

Verdict: This comparison appears to be the flavour of the week amongst the DTTalk community. I’d say a large portion of people will be looking to bring in one of these guys. Similarities between the two players pretty much end at the hyphen. Hoskin-Elliott is a strictly outside player who has very good JS. Neal-Bullen is a bash and crash contested midfielder who’s scoring potential is high. Fortune favours the brave. Perhaps controversial but I’d go with Neal-Bullen who I continue to like more and more after reading up about his footy ability.

That concludes this rounds article. I certainly hope it answered some burning questions. Leighroy and I will roll out the brand new article next week so stay tuned to DTTalk for that. Here’s hoping the rooks get their act together for the second round!

Big Crows fan, AFL fantasy try-hard and writer of the Draft wraps and Versus articles.



  1. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 10:08 am

    Great Read once again! Keep it up!

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 10:47 am

      Thanks mate!

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 2:27 pm

      Hey guys, got heaps of spots left in my league starting tonight. Code is: W3F7HWAE

  2. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 10:15 am

    Great article. As a demons fan I think “Nibbler” (Neal-bullen) is great, but it will only take one poor game to be dropped. With Tyson and Kent to come back in, then Bugg and Harmes competing for similar spots, I can only see him staying in if he keeps having blinders.

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 10:47 am

      Fair call there. Hopefully he continues to do enough!

  3. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 10:40 am

    volt to Steele then JOM to Heppell. Thoughts? Or should I go volt to smith/Dahl for safety then trade smith to marchbank

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 10:49 am

      option 2 for sure, u can set and forget dahl, barring injury, and marchbank should make a fair bit of cash and continue scoring (plus smith is a must trade)

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 10:52 am

      You should probably fix up your non-playing rookies first (get your cash generation going) so I’d go with the second option, Marchbank’s a good pick. Dahl’s pretty reliable if that’s what you’re after.

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 11:06 am

      I am looking at that exact trade to.
      Its 2 keepers, JOM and the Hawks werent inspiring last week and VS Adelaide they will have a tough game.
      Heppell if scores 120+ will make $40K with a BE of 47, Steele will make cash and without Volt and Armitage should be in for a 100+ game.
      Tough decision.

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 2:30 pm

      Hey guys, got heaps of spots left in my league starting tonight. Code is: W3F7HWAE

      • Avatar


        March 30, 2017 at 2:47 pm

        Hi Joshua

        I’ve come on board – maybe add a few more celebrities as you’ve only got one at the moment!!
        Footballers used to participate in the years past now it’s only Roy/Calvin/Warnie and the traders
        At least that will get you to 8 then you can readjust the league size
        Good luck

      • Avatar


        April 8, 2017 at 1:39 pm

        We’ve arrvied at the end of the line and I have what I need!

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 5:22 pm

      i’ve gone Volt to Dahl as i dont really have any other premo fwds, and then got marchbank for smith.

      Next week i’ll get steel if caddy does shit and then trade up JOM to the dyson vaccum

  4. Avatar

    Tony Modra

    March 30, 2017 at 10:49 am

    Nice read man. What do you think of GHS vs SPP

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 11:09 am

      I’d go with SPP even though GHS could/should out-score him, because of his job security.

  5. Avatar

    Billy Hoyle

    March 30, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Any hype on Hopper with forward DDP? I’m already on board..

  6. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 11:00 am

    WHE or McGrath, if I chose WHE I have to field otten, hibberd but if I choose mcgrath I field Houston

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 11:32 am

      fair point – but WHE is a keeper for upgrade later down the track, and i reckon McGrath will be rested on and off – still a very young man

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 1:34 pm

      Im not expecting Otten or Hibberd to be named this week.

  7. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 11:37 am

    McGrath or spend the extra 70K on Jones?

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 12:16 pm

      jones – McGarth will be rested on and off, and Jones is sure to get DPP by round 6, and play every game i reckon

  8. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    miller or macrae??

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      if you have the coin, McCrae as he’ll score more – but not such a POD choice. Issac Smith ?

      • Avatar


        March 30, 2017 at 12:24 pm

        was thinking miller which leaves me 142k for next week?

      • Avatar


        April 8, 2017 at 1:55 pm

        That’s a slick answer to a chlnaengilg question

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 12:59 pm

      Depends on who you’re trading out.

      If its not a must trade, then id be looking at fixing rooks and looking for a Heeney upgrade in the next few weeks.
      if it is a must trade for say, Reiwoldt, then im suggesting Macrae all day long!! He may not be a POD, but you cant say no to scores of 100 every week IMO. Plus you still pocket close to $60k.

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 2:01 pm

      more profit in Took, him and Hall should be safe 100 this year, only major GC premium mids

  9. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    risky to drop O’meara but think investing in those two will be key.

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 12:48 pm

      id keep o’meara for the time being and fix other problems

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 12:52 pm

      Personally im going to give O’Meara at least a few weeks.
      swap a couple of his behinds for goals and give him a few tackles (he only had 1)and he scores 90odd on the weekend.. he’s missed 2 years of football, he was always going to give a few sub par scores early..

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 4:20 pm

      Seems pretty reactionary to me. Taranto played a difficult game in extreme heat, away from home, in a losing side, against one of the best teams in the comp. And I agree with Liam’s comments re O’Meara.
      WHE’s a fine enough pick, but I wouldn’t be surprised if, in the next week or two, Taranto and O’Meara come good and WHE’s scores come back to earth a bit. Neal-Bullen’s job security isn’t even a sure thing. Maybe you’ll pull it off, laugh all the way to the bank and I’ll have to eat my words, but I suspect the move won’t gain you much and could even set your team back a bit. Just my 2c. Good luck!

  10. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 12:47 pm

    no idea about trades this week, I have no rookies that are going to make a decent amount of coin any time soon, so im thinking this.

    D. Swallow – Neal-Bullen.
    Taranto – Hoskin-Elliot.

    leaves me with $105,000..

    or should I be looking towards Hannan in the fwd line?

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 12:49 pm

      look good to me, hoskin elliot is a much safer choice. Can u please help above

  11. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    WHE or Hannan + $$?

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 1:51 pm

      I’d go WHE

    • Avatar

      Lance Franklin

      March 30, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      WHE for solid F5/6 position unitl byes

  12. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 2:05 pm

    Week one and have no idea where to go from here!!!

    DEF: Adams (C Loophole), Laird, Mills, Marchbank, Campton, Otten (Vickers-Wills, Stewart)

    MID: Dangerfield (Captain), Rockliff, T.Mitchell, J.Steven, Fyfe, Beams, O’meara, Barrett (Pickett, Hibberd)

    RUCK: Gawn, Martin (Preuss, Cameron)

    FWD: Dalhhaus, Steele, Roughead, Nankervis, Kennedy, Houstin (Eddy, Miles)

    $3k in the bank. 2 trades.

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 3:49 pm

      Mills to Jones is a nice little money maker given Jones has a BE in the 20s. Also not to take away from your set and forget ruck situation but a Martin to Witts trade would free up alot of cash and with Witts also having a BE in the 20s, you’re looking at a nice bank balance over the coming weeks.
      Just thought though, I’m all about making money this early! Great looking team though

  13. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 2:21 pm

    Taranto > Hoskin

    Luxury transfer:
    A) Steven > Hepp
    B) Mills > Jones

    Otherwise i have nothing to do

    • Avatar

      Lance Franklin

      March 30, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      Back in your premos. keep steven. maybe look too get Hannan (-21 BE good job security) in for a shit fwd rook like picket. Taranto > WHE is good

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 2:45 pm

      Just wait until 5pm before you say you have nothing to do…

  14. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    Hey guys, got heaps of spots left in my league starting tonight. Code is: W3F7HWAE

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 3:42 pm

      I’m in! 5 more to go

  15. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 2:36 pm

    thinking of swapping ryder from ruck into my fwd line and downgrading him to neale bullen and then upgrading eddy or my other rookie fwd to butler or hannan. does neal-bullen have better job security than hannan? butler named on starting side and seems like he is a lock for richmond just depends how generous dusty is week to week giving off cheap goals haha.
    just thinking of having both dees in fwd line as they will smash the blues and can see sandilands dominating ryder all day in the ruck….

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 4:26 pm

      Sandi had 48 hit outs last week for 86 points, with Stanley at 14 hit outs for 81 points. I think Ryder will be used to stretch Sandi this week, cant see Ryder going sub 80 (without injury).

  16. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    Would you go

    M kennedy to WHE
    Omeara to Heppel
    Fixin up rooks or get in underpriced premo for still unkown quality of omeara?

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 4:13 pm

      Back in JOM. Go for option 1 imo

  17. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    Voldt to Neal Bullen
    Taranto to Mitchell


    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 4:02 pm

      or Voldt to Butler
      Taranto to Rockliff

  18. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    WHE or Zak Jones

  19. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    BACK // Adams, Laird, Jones, Marchbank, Hampton, Otten [Hibberd, Stewart]
    MIDS // Danger[C], Rockliff, Treloar[V], T.Mitchell, Fyfe, Beams, O’Meara, Barrett [Pickett, Mountford]
    RUCK // Gawn, Martin [Preuss, Cameron]
    FORW // Dalhaus, Steele, Nank, Roughead, Hannan, Butler [Taranto, Eddie]
    BANK // 4k

    Week 1 drama! No idea where to go from here. Can’t direct swap Taranto in Neal-Bullen or WHE, and not sure who else I would downgrade to find the funds.

    Otherwise something like
    OUT: O’Meara and Roughead IN: WHE and Clayton Oliver
    OUT: Taranto & O’Meara IN: Houston and Clayton Oliver

    Any thoughts / advice greatly appreciated!

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 4:22 pm

      i think it’s a bit early to get rid of O’Meara, yea he was disappointing but he should get a lot better.

      • Avatar


        March 30, 2017 at 4:26 pm

        Thanks. I do agree – My main issue is that I’ve got the two trades and everything I read says to hang onto my under-performers! I’ll just wait for team announcements I think. No changes for tonight (No WHE).

        • Avatar


          March 30, 2017 at 4:29 pm

          thoughts below would be great

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 6:19 pm

      I was thinking of swapping roughead for WHE. Roughead will struggle against crows. Its a hard pick

  20. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 4:17 pm

    which option?
    1. voldt to steele, kennedy to whe/neal bullen
    2. voldt to whe, kennedy to neal bullen with 350k to make a major upgrade next week

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 4:34 pm

      I’d jump on Steele. He’s in good form through the start of the year and with Armitage out might get more of a run through the midfield in the next coming weeks. If he makes the most of those opportunities that might become a more permanent fixture for the rest of the season. WHE seems to have better job security, but Melbourne do come up against the Blues who are famously easy to score again. More comfortable with WHE, I think.

      • Avatar


        April 8, 2017 at 2:02 pm

        This post has helped me think things thrgouh

  21. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 4:21 pm

    Adams, Laird, Wellingham, Marchbank, Hampton, Otten

    Danger, Treloar, Titchell, Heppel, Steven, Fyfe, Beams, Barrett

    Gawn, Preuss

    Dahl, Higgins, Steele, WHE, Butler, Eddy

    Just traded Hall for Heppel and Caddy for WHE
    310k in the bank to trade Preuss for Grundy next week somehow

  22. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    Who to dish out of Pickett or Eddy?

    • Stuart


      March 30, 2017 at 7:10 pm

      Pickett named on field is making me think Eddy. Also the fact he only scored 17!

  23. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    Thoughts on:
    Shaw to Z. Jones
    M. Kennedy to Steele

  24. Avatar


    March 30, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    RDT roughead for WHE?

    • Avatar


      March 30, 2017 at 10:16 pm

      That worked.

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