|Draft range||80ish (6th-7th RUC)|
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Why should I pick him?
In the past, the term ‘set and forget’ has been commonly used in AFL Fantasy when it comes to selecting your starting rucks. For years, successful teams slotted Max Gawn & Brodie Grundy into R1 & R2, with a similar trend developing in 2023. Right now, the two most popular ruckmen in the game are Rowan Marshall (34%) and Tim English (32%), but that doesn’t mean you have to follow suit.
Scott Lycett has yet another frustrating injury setback to blame for his reduced price. In a Round 4 battle with Max Gawn, he suffered a shoulder injury that required surgery and forced him to miss three months of footy. Lycett mentioned on the BackChat podcast late last year that he suffered an infection and complications following the surgery which ruled him out of action for the entire season. It’s not ideal that the Port Adelaide big man has had to deal with an infection following major surgery three times, but when he’s on the field, Lycett can still score in consistent bunches.
In the three healthy games he played last season, Lycett produced scores of 42, 98 & 95. Two out of three ain’t bad and the 2018 premiership player has proven that he can be better than the 70 points he is priced at. In fact, in 53 games as a Port player, Lycett has an average of 83 and it’s not absurd to expect similar scores in the upcoming season. If you’re considering rolling the dice, it’s good to know that four of his first six games come at Adelaide Oval and there are some decent fantasy matchups on the slate.
Lycett will have to do battle with Reilly O’Brien and Tim English, but the Lions, Magpies, Swans & Eagles should be fruitful for the Power’s hitout specialist. While he usually ranks inside the top 10 for hitouts when Lycett is up and running, he’s no stranger to accumulating possessions either. That bodes well for his scoring in 2023, with Port lacking recognised competition for his spot as their primary RUC. Sam Hayes was given a chance last year when Lycett went down, only to find himself dropped following their Round 12 bye. The Power then tried to deploy Jeremy Finlayson, Charlie Dixon, and even mid-season draftee Brynn Teakle at centre bounces, all of whom will start the year behind Lycett on the depth chart.
It’s possible that we see someone like Teakle share ruck responsibilities with Lycett as the season progresses, but right now the Port veteran is their best option to help them win. While he may be forced to share the load, that shouldn’t deter coaches who are interested in picking Lycett. A solid run to open the fantasy year and his cheap price tag are two massive ticks working in Lycett’s favour – making him worthy of recognition as an R2 option.
Why shouldn’t I pick him?
Despite all the positives I’ve just highlighted, let’s remember this is Scott Lycett I’m talking about. He is an aging ruckman with a history of injuries who may face competition for CBA’s and hitouts around the ground.
While he has shown an ability to rack up a reasonable amount of touches for a ruck, Lycett hardly offers the same fantasy pedigree as some of his peers. In fact, Port Adelaide’s current R1 has played 132 AFL games in his career for only 17 scores in triple figures, with just three of them over 120. That’s not incredibly alarming for a ruckman, but Lycett comes coupled with durability concerns, playing in all 22 games of a fantasy season just once back in 2018.
Coincidentally, just a few days before this Deck of DT article dropped a piece appeared on the AFL site where Lycett stated ‘I am one of the older ones so they’re definitely going to be trying to come for that spot’. None of them are expected to overthrow him anytime soon, but Port Adelaide need to start thinking about who’s going to be Lycett’s long-term replacement. The presence of Brynn Teakle, plus budding prospect Sam Hayes and unproven teenager Dante Visentini isn’t going to force Lycett out of the team, however, it’s realistic to see the Power utilising two ruckmen in their side during the season.
Teakle and Hayes are both 23, with the pair serving a decent footy apprenticeship honing their craft. They could be given a chance to shine if, or should I say when Lycett goes down. Given his injury history, it’s hard to envision the veteran ruck playing every game during the fantasy season and his exit could create an opportunity for one of the young talents. Even if he returns to the team Lycett could find himself dropping consistent 60’s and it’ll be at that point you’ll be wishing you went down the Marshall/English route. Just set and forget.
Deck of DT Rating.
Scott Lycett currently sits in my second starting ruck spot and if nothing goes wrong, he’ll be there in Round 1. The threat of a dual-ruck setup at Alberton is real, although none of the young guys will be posing an immediate threat to Lycett’s throne. He’s poised to give coaches a value option at R2, allowing you to take a wait-and-see approach with the top-dollar ruckmen and save some money. There are safer options than Lycett out there, but he could serve as a stepping stone to eventually help you complete your RUC rotation – capable of scoring at a decent clip along the way.
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February 2, 2023 at 7:59 am
Interesting read, Fry. Don’t become a used car salesman; you would struggle to put up a good sales pitch for the old bombs you don’t actually believe are road worthy.
With Cameron injured, doubt over Meek playing solo ruck, Marshall possibly playing FWD, ROB being ROB and limited discount RUC options available, Lycett may be a half decent option this year. He should average 80s give us a little profit, while we get to see who the best R2 will be, and spend the extra coin on point scoring MIDs, Doc and/or Dunk.
February 2, 2023 at 11:13 am
Luckily I don’t plan on selling vintage Honda Accord’s any time soon 😂
You’re right, there’s so much uncertainty around the RUC landscape that Lycett is the best alternative in my eyes. Frees up cash to be used elsewhere
February 2, 2023 at 9:38 am
Great article Fry. Definitely got me thinking about Lycett
February 2, 2023 at 11:14 am
Cheers mate, join the party with me!
February 2, 2023 at 11:04 am
No way Port play a second ruck btw. They have too many key forwards to squeeze in (Dixon, Marshall, Finlayson, Georgiades) in order to have room for another ruck who can’t play forward. I believe Lycett said last week that Finlayson will spend some time in the ruck, so that is who he would rotate with.
February 2, 2023 at 11:15 am
You’re right they have some big boys up forward so it doesn’t make tons of sense to deploy two rucks. Finlayson will probably serve as the backup initially, but I could see one of those young guys getting a berth and eating into Lycett’s scoring. Will be interesting to watch
February 2, 2023 at 11:59 am
Hello, Fry. I’m considering Lycett or Goldy as my starting r2. What do you think of old Goldy? Similar price and both could have similar output before I move them on to which ruck rises as a keeper.
February 2, 2023 at 2:36 pm
I’ll be honest, I haven’t thought too much about Goldy as an option but he’s one to consider. I personally prefer Lycett, but both of them are looming as good value picks
February 2, 2023 at 3:11 pm
Fry, I’m thinking they will both give you a reliable 70-85 a week and I’m not interested in Meek unless he goes huge in the preseason. They won’t lose any coin and can be forward scouts until Marshall, English, ROB, Grundy or Gawn emerge as better prospects.
February 3, 2023 at 1:26 am
‘Surgery casts doubt on Port tall’s R1 hopes’ … ‘Jeremy Finlayson suffered an ankle syndesmosis injury at training requiring surgery’ (www.afl.com.au). Lycett suddenly has less competition for the spot.
February 3, 2023 at 6:12 pm
Was looking to go in with Cameron as my R1 at this stage, just not wanting to invest in any of the big names with the question marks over them, and also the possibility that there’s still a bit of value left in Cameron, but just read he’s got a minor hammy niggle, and not sure it’s something I want to mess with over the course of a season.
Lycett might have to become an option.
February 3, 2023 at 6:22 pm
I’ve had Cameron in my FWD line for Lycett insurance but after his injury niggles I’m thinking of getting rid of him as well
Hans the German
February 3, 2023 at 8:45 pm
Cameron’s injury minor and back in a week or 2