One down, 22 to go!
The fantasy season unannounced itself with a bang as almost every coach was forced to deal with one issue or another over the weekend. Whether it was Elliot Yeo that threw you a curveball, Will Phillips named as the sub, or falsely trusting the trio of Tom Stewart, Tristan Xerri and Josh Kelly – Round 1 tested a lot of the fantasy community. Some of the popular rookies came to play and helped boost their coaches up the rankings, but we were left with some unimpressive scores along the way as well. There’s a lot to ponder at the trade table heading into Round 2, with cash cows once again a primary focus for those of us that want to be successful.
Make sure to also cast your eyes over:
My DT Talk 2023 Rookie Guide
My DT Talk 2023 Preseason Watchlist
My SBF article – The 20 most important rookies/cash cows for 2023
Rookie/cash cows are defined as players who started the season priced at $300,000 or lower
Cash Cow King – Round 1
There was Harry Sheezel (118) and everybody else in Round 1. The versatile North draftee looked right at home in blue and white, chalking up a ridiculous 34 touches while patrolling the backline. In the same game, Reuben Ginbey (92) put in a strong performance with his 12 tackles the second-most ever by a debutant. Kade Chandler’s (104) complete game surprised a few, myself included, and is bound to see him earn some votes, while Hawthorn midfielder Cam Mackenzie (75) and Roo ruck Charlie Comben (80) round out the top-5.
Round 1 Power Rankings
After 1 week of action, these are the top 10 cash cow performers in season 2023!
It shouldn’t have to be said, but if you don’t own all of the mainstream rookies like Sheezel, Ashcroft, Phillipou, Ginbey and Mackenzie, I’d make it a priority to acquire them. St Kilda’s youngster probably sits at the bottom of the pile with some concerns over his scoring ability, but Mattaes will still be a prominent cash cow that all coaches should aim to own – even if he’s sitting on the bench. Currently the most traded in player, it’s no secret that fantasy coaches want Kade Chandler ($260K, 104, BE -27) in their team after his mammoth score against the Bulldogs. I was one of the coaches tossing up whether to pick him or not prior to bouncedown and while I missed the boat last week, it’s not too late if you can pounce now.
Outside of Chandler, another pair of FWD cash cows Luke Pedlar ($246K, 70, BE -4) and Jye Menzie ($313K, 74, BE 8) put their hands up as potential targets. Menzie was dangerous around goal for Essendon in just the 3rd game of his career, while Pedlar impressed at times during an ugly Crows performance. It’s safer to keep both of them on the bench and while I’d prefer the extra cash by grabbing Pedlar, Menzie’s scoring should be higher. Alwyn Davey Jr ($237K, 58, BE 5) already finds himself in 51% of teams, but if you avoided him, then he is shaping up to be a fine bench piece too.
Down back, lifelong Gold Coast fan Bodhi Uwland ($233K, 68, BE -4) is the most sought after rookie following his 20 touches against the Swans. Scoring 33 points in the last quarter helped save his score and I’m worried that he’ll make way with Lachie Weller returning. However, if Uwland can keep his spot in the Suns’ team he should keep generating cash in the short term. Judd McVee ($219K, 49, BE 8) fits that mould as well, with an average close to 45 on the cards for as long as remains in Melbourne’s best-22.
Cut them loose
It’s a bummer for the fantasy coaches that rolled the dice on Jack Bytel ($340K, 83, BE 6) with the Saints midfielder performing well in Round 1. Running with Caleb Serong at times, Bytel still managed to produce the second highest score of his 17-game career by laying 7 tackles and gathering 15 touches. A knee injury is set to rule him out for an undetermined amount of time, making him a must-trade for now. Given his injury history, I’d be wary of bringing him back in, but Bytel could become a downgrade target again once he’s fully fit. Could.
At this stage, it’s too early to pull the trigger on trading out a rookie following their one game effort. If they fail to make the cut when teams drop on Thursday, then things change. There were moments in the Eagles/Kangaroos game where both Noah Long ($211K, 38, BE 15) and Campbell Chesser ($207K, 32, BE 19) stood out, although they could certainly be on the chopping block. I can see a world where Long ends up as the sub against GWS, or worst excluded from the team, but I have more faith in Chesser’s ability to stay in West Coast’s side. Another player that showed flashes of promise was Anthony Caminiti ($204K, 29, BE 20) who is lucky St Kilda’s injury list is so extensive. For the 7,500 people out there with him in their squad, let’s hope Caminiti can take it up a notch in his second game.
GameDay Squad – Create. Coach. Compete.
Keep the faith
Seeing Ollie Hollands ($289K, 44, BE 27) and Lachie Cowan ($247K, 35, BE 25) score poorly in the first game of the year wasn’t ideal. It is worth noting that both debutants played better than their scoreline suggests and I’m assuming they’ll stay in Carlton’s side to take on the reigning premiers. Cowan’s place in the team could come into question after he was subbed out against Richmond due to cramping issues, but I’m joining 37% of the competition and crossing my fingers for Vossy to give him another chance.
Second-year Lion Darcy Wilmot ($219K, 49, BE 8) did his job as a bench rook despite Brisbane copping a heavy loss, with Fergus Greene ($205K, 30, BE 20) somewhat of a disappointment at the other end of the ground. You know what you sign up for with key forwards and low scores should be expected. That hasn’t stopped nearly 3,500 coaches from chopping Greene out – probably for Kade Chandler. If you’re making a move for Chandler, go for it, otherwise I’d give the mature-age Hawk another chance.
Wait and see
There weren’t a lot of coaches that took a punt on Adelaide defender Max Michalanney ($282K, 50, BE 21) given his track record of low scores throughout his junior days. The key back still managed to keep pace with his elite fantasy teammate Rory Laird (too soon owners?) but I wouldn’t be investing in the Crows backman, especially given his inflated price tag. North Melbourne tall Charlie Comben ($296K 80, BE 0) also started the year above basement price and he turned plenty of heads by scoring 80 points last weekend. With Tristan Xerri going down early, Comben attended 40 ruck contests and I’m not sure he’ll have the same workload when Todd Goldstein likely enters the fray to play the Dockers. I’m also taking a cautious approach with young Roo Miller Bergman ($217K, 46, BE 10) who could be a placeholder in North’s team for Darcy Tucker and/or Aaron Hall. I’ll change my tune if he excels against Fremantle, but I want to get another look at him before investing.
Subbed On – Reef McInnes, Will Phillips and Matt Roberts
Subbed Off – Lachie Cowan and Bailey Laurie
A large number of cash cows were affected by the sub vest in Round 1, with Will Phillips ($281K, 46, BE 24) the biggest casualty. After a strong preseason, Phillips found himself locked in the midfield for roughly half of the coaches in the game before he was named as North’s substitute. He managed to score his 46 points from just 53% TOG, although I’d want to see him in their starting 22 before I trade Phillips into my side. The other inclusions via the vest Reef McInnes ($283K, 36, BE 32) and Matt Roberts ($204K, 29, BE 20) didn’t get a real crack at producing a noteworthy score and it’s hard to envision either of them coming into their respective sides. Roberts remains intriguing after scoring 29 in just 12% TOG, but he’ll either keep the vest or be playing for Sydney’s VFL side this weekend. I’ve already addressed Lachie Cowan being subbed out of the Carlton game and hopefully he can stay in the side – I don’t have the same optimism for Bailey Laurie ($200K, 17, BE 35) though. Expect his name to be amongst the Demons’ outs on Thursday.
There was no VFL, SANFL or WAFL action outside of some practice hitouts last weekend, however the Victorian state league will return on Friday. The SANFL will recommence the following weekend, with the WA league starting up one week later, giving us plenty to look forward to when it comes to analysing cash cows at the lower level. Hardcore fans will know that I’ve been extremely bullish on Bailey Humphrey ($290K, DNP, BE 36) and his chances of scoring at a decent clip right away, however he may have to earn his place in Gold Coast’s side. Humphrey will return this week from an infected foot and likely play in the VFL, but it’s smart to stockpile some cash for his impending debut. Keep an eye on Alex Cincotta ($200K, DNP, BE 25) as well after Carlton’s mature-aged backman failed to squeeze himself into the Round 1 team. If Cowan struggles this weekend and Cincotta stars, then I could see the Blues making a straight swap.
Remember the Name
In no particular order, here are some of the other rookie-priced players to consider throughout the season.
Jake Stein (Suns, $288K)
Josh Fahey (Giants, $200K)
Will Gould (Swans, $200K)
Rhett Montgomerie (Bombers, $200K)
Jaokb Ryan (Magpies, $246K)
Corey Wagner (Dockers, $285K)
Sam Banks (Tigers, $200K)
Sam Durdin (Blues, $213K)
Darragh Joyce (Lions, $241K)
Tylar Young (Tigers, $200K)
Connor Blakely (Suns, $235K)
Jhye Clark (Cats, $286K)
Blake Drury (Kangaroos, $200K)
Angus Sheldrick (Swans, $200K)
James Tunstill (Lions, $292K)
Billy Dowling (Crows, $216K)
Darcy Jones (Giants, $260K)
Ed Allen (Magpies, $264K)
Hugh Bond (Crows, $202K)
Jaspa Fletcher (Lions, $278K)
Henry Hustwaite (Hawks, $228K)
Jacob Edwards (Kangaroos, $200K)
Alex Mirkov (Blues, $200K)
Ned Moyle (Suns, $200K)
Harry Barnett (Eagles, $256K)
Dante Visentini (Power, $200K)
Josh Sinn (Power, $233K)
Arthur Jones (Bulldogs, $200K)
Thomas Berry (Suns, $286K)
Bailey Laurie (Demons, $200K)
James Tsitas (Suns, $200K)
Joe Richards (Magpies, $206K)
Ollie Dempsey (Cats, $200K)
Finlay Macrae (Magpies, $290K)
Aaron Cadman (Giants, $300K)
Anthony Caminiti (Saints, $200K)
Jacob van Rooyen (Demons, $200K)
FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @SportsbyFry for all things AFL Fantasy (and more)! Feel free to hit me up with any questions you have throughout the season. Good luck! ✌️
- Dan on Friday Fantasy Fill Up – Rd. 13: “agreed Warnie , windhager every day over Warner” Jun 10, 01:14
- Warnie on Friday Fantasy Fill Up – Rd. 13: “Windhager is averaging 33 or so because he was sub in three of his first six games. He scored 120,…” Jun 9, 22:21
- Will on Calvin’s Captains – Rd. 13: “English was absolutely dominating Lycett all game, he wasn’t injured. They had to sub him off and double up on…” Jun 9, 19:17
- lizardofoz on Friday Fantasy Fill Up – Rd. 13: “known” Jun 9, 18:48
- lizardofoz on Friday Fantasy Fill Up – Rd. 13: “I’m happy with Warner but Windhager had to be a dodgy selection. 66 from a know tagger averaging 33 or…” Jun 9, 18:47
Cunnington + Jones to Daicos + Pedlar ($9K short of Chandler)
Cunnington + Jones to JHF + McKenna/Cole
D1-3 is currently Doc – Dawson – McGrath
I could also get Gulden in but would need to play one of McVee, Chesser, Cowan or Wilmont at D6
I prefer the top option out of those two. As tempting as it is to get JHF or Gulden, strengthening your backline with Daicos is a smart play
Nice work as usual Fry! Better to bring in Chandler for Greene or Long? Greene might have better JS (at least until Lewis comes back) but Long might average slightly more?
Cheers mate! Out of those two, I’d definitely recommend culling Long first
Ive currently got Chesser, Cowan, Wilmot, Noah Long, Hollands, Greene and Davey Jr as my rookies with 30k in the bank. My underperforming premiums were Laird, Dunkley, Marshall and McGrath. Thinking of trading out 2 of the rooks mentioned above but low on cash and will not be able to get in Chandler. What do I do?
It’s a tough position to be in, like a lot of coaches who want to shuffle rookies but can’t afford Chandler. I’d be against trading one of the top dogs just yet, so let’s see how teams pan out and that may help with your rookie shuffling
Milera + Titch to Green and Phillips (banking 280k)
or.. to setterfield and Ziebel/JHF … thoughts??
Hollands and Cowan to ziebell and chandler
Option 2 Greene and Chesser to chandler and menzie
I do like the appeal of grabbing Ziebell, I’d do that one although it might leave you thin in the backline for another month
Is Hollands worth dumping if it allows me to get in Chandler, then Greene -> Uwland to fix up some rookies?
Screenshot of squad – https://imgur.com/a/6rPE7KE
$33k in bank.
I still think it’s worth holding on to Hollands, but those are solid moves. Let’s see what the teams look like because if Uwland doesn’t get a gig that might change your moves
Cheers Fry (great to have you back BTW).
Love the idea of Ziebell but can’t see where he’d fit in with my current FWD line.
If not Uwland, can you see anything else that sticks out?
Cheers mate, feels good to be back!
I’m a bit the same, I want him while he’s still cheap but can’t find room. Nothing springs to mind off the top of my head, but that may change at team selection
Need to fix Xerri and am thinking a swap up to Darcy at the expense of Gulden down to Chandler. Will bank $270k out of the transaction…
That’s rough seeing Gulden go, but Sean Darcy is a great get for Xerri
Great article as always Fry. I can replace Constable with Chandler via DPP action if Constable is dropped, and bag some cash, but it means I end up with Wilmot or Cowan on field, and either Philipou or Hollands has to drop to the bench to make it all work. Is Chandler really a must have, or should I miss out on Chandler and get Constable up to Day instead, by downgrading Kelly to De Goey to get the cash? Cheers mate
Thanks mate! I’m hopeful that Constable will keep his spot with Uwland making way for Weller, but we’ll have to wait and see! I do think that Chandler is a cricual rook given his low BE, but he could be on the outs as well with 4 Dees potentially coming back in. See how the teams unfold, but either of those moves is a smart play
Always a good read thanks Fry
Not throwing a spanner in the works but read on Supercoachtalk that Sheezel left the track early with minor foot injury
I live in LA so I’m guided by the great sites around like this one
Anyone heard that news or any updates??
Good Luck everyone
Thanks mate. That’s the first and only report I’ve heard of such a thing so I don’t think we have anything to worry about. Keep your ear to the ground though, something may eventuate later in the week
Another great article.
Would you have any advice on which rooks to play on the ground this week? Maybe the power rankings might be an indication or should we look at other factors, such as opponent?
Also tempted to switch it so I have two midfield rooks (Mackenzie and Ashcroft) and three forward rooks (Sheezel, Pedlar, Chandler) on ground.
Good question. I think the power rankings are a good starting point and you can break ties by looking at the other factors (scoring potential/opponent/role/etc). I’d be worried about playing Pedlar AND Chandler on field each week, I think 3 MID rooks is still the way to go. More points up for grabs from midfielder cash cows
Would you field Chesser, Cowan or Phillipou?
Go the Poo
Go the Po!!
I think you have to trust Phillipou out of that trio. If there’s a way try make Cowan your emergency and if he scores well cash his performance in
Thoughts on if Bytel is out. Do I downgrade to a rookie such as Chandler or go up to a mid pricer such as Worpel
If you can go up to Worpel that’s pretty tempting, although there’s tons of value still remaining in Chandler. I think if you can get to Worpel, do that although they are both solid moves
Jelly & Draper to
English/Callaghan or Darcy/ziebell ?
Darcy and Zieball for me.
That’s a TOUGH question, Darcy and Ziebell do offer a lot of value but I think I’d side with English and Callaghan
Hello Fry, great to see you are up and about for Fantasy 2023. Been a big fan of yours and would love your advice once again. Have had a decent start with Round 1 score of 2155 Rank 800s. I essentially have 3 options, all revolving around bringing in Chandler as I missed him like you unfortunately.
1) McGrath -> Zieball
Long -> Chandler
2) Hollands -> Chandler
Long -> Uwland
3) Constable -> Phillips (selection pending)
Long -> Chandler
So with the fact that we know Hollands held his spot. Option 2 will essentially lock out after Thursday night right.
Gold Coast being the Sunday game means that we only get Extended Bench for Sunday games. So if there is even a remote chance Constable is out due to Weller straight back Option 1 and Option 3 are more advantageous in order to not have my trades locked out and unnecessarily trading out Hollands.
The bigger question within this really is, Is it ok to trade out Hollands in order to get Chandler
Option 1 brings Wilmot/Cowan on field in replace of Phillipou, Option 2 Rookie only trades and keeps McGrath, Option 3 is in case of emergency for selection dramas with Constable.
I encourage all people to feel free to discuss these options.
Hey mate! I’m glad to be back, hopefully I can help the fantasy community out over the season.
Out of those three options, I think you can rule out No. 2, Hollands should score decent and keep his role at Carlton and it eliminates the panic of locking something in tonight. I like No. 3 the best, purely because McGrath could turn things around and Constable’s spot in the side is far from secure. Getting Phillips back in would be a bonus too, but if he’s still going to be the sub that may change things slightly. Let’s see what the teams bring us tonight, there’s bound to be another issue that forces our hand elsewhere
Great article legend! Would you support long to chandler and jelly to cogs even if cogs is in your midfield due to a stacked forward line? Or should I go LDU instead of the cog man?
Cheers mate! I love the Long to Chandler move, and there’s nothing wrong with slotting Cogs into your MID’s. I’d be inclined to recommend LDU, but with all the Giants’ outs, Coniglio should be a stellar inclusion.
Who would you field out of Chesser, Cowan, Davey, Phillipou, and Chandler?
If I had to pick one, I’d go with Phillipou. Because I like to go above and beyond though I’d rank them – Phillipou, Chandler, Chesser, Cowan, Davey
Which rookie defender should I field this week: Uwland, Wilmot, Cowan, Chesser. Leaning towards one of the first two. Cheers legend, another great read.
If he holds his spot I’d be tempted to pick Uwland, otherwise I’d lean towards fielding Chesser
Excellent stuff, as per usual, thanks Fry.
Need a few more people to fill my classic fantasy league starting in Rd 2. Feel free to jump in if anybody wants to. JHZM2TH7
Cheers mate! I missed this before lockout so missed out on joining the league. Next time though