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Cash Cows

Fry’s Cash Cows – Rd. 4

Fry looks at the important rookies as coaches look to nail their cash cow picks following Round 3.

Three down, 21 to go!

Coaches who couldn’t find a way to ditch Charlie Constable or Luke Davies-Uniacke over the weekend quickly learned how important it is to have reliable green dots sitting on your pine. Cash generation is crucial at this point of the season, and while some of our rookies are approaching max value it’s wise to still have close to an entire squad of 30 playing each weekend. The addition of the loophole strategy for on-field points and VC scores means that most will have a few non-playing players in their team, but with potential downgrade targets emerging, it’s important to remember cash is key.

Make sure to also cast your eyes over:

DT Talk 2023 Rookie Guide
DT Talk 2023 Preseason Watchlist
SBF – 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 3

At half-time of the Hawks/Roos clash, I was worried that Harry Sheezel’s (109) dominance in the CCK voting could be coming to a halt. One 55-point third quarter later and those concerns were put to bed. The usual suspects Will Ashcroft (71) and Reuben Ginbey (82) did their thing for coaches, with Cam Mackenzie (94) tackling his way to an impressive point total as well. The final nomination goes to debutant Jacob van Rooyen (76), who adequately stepped up in Max Gawn’s absence with an impressive score to kickstart his career and more importantly, his cash generation.

Who's gets your vote as the most important cash cow in Round 3?

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Round 3 Power Rankings

After 3 weeks of action, these are the top 10 cash cow performers in season 2023!

Making Moves

Money makers

I won’t bore you an elongated spread about Harry Sheezel ($577K, 109, BE -21), Reuben Ginbey ($448K, 82, BE 3) and Will Ashcroft ($424K, 71, BE 5). Just know, these three rookies aren’t going anywhere (barring injury) prior to the byes, which gives coaches a chance to address other issues within their squad. Some may have been concerned with Cam Mackenzie ($404K, 94, BE 2) after his 40-point effort in Round 2, coupled with his decreasing number of CBA’s. I wouldn’t be panicking yet as Mackenzie still helped himself to 20 touches and nine tackles which fuelled a career-best fantasy score. Similar could be said for MID mainstay Ollie Hollands ($366K, 56, BE 12) who, despite amassing just 13 disposals should remain in our sides for a little longer.

Once teams dropped last Thursday, a lot of coaches were asking which player to choose for their FWD bench – Anthony Caminiti ($297K, 55, BE -5) or Jacob van Rooyen ($238K, 76, BE -10). It turns out, the answer was either, with both young talls maintaining a negative breakeven thanks to their performances over the weekend. Long term, I’m still a believer of JVR over St Kilda’s Caminiti, but both should maintain their residence as serviceable cash cows. A trio of popular picks in Darcy Wilmot ($309K, 66, BE -5), Kade Chandler ($393K, 66, BE -3) and Luke Pedlar ($343K, 67, BE -2) virtually produced identical scores and they should only continue to rise in value over the next month. A lot of coaches will be swinging magnets and potentially fielding some from this group, which is a fine play in my eyes. A one-week suspension will see Pedlar miss the clash against Freo, but there shouldn’t be any urgency to ditch him.

Keep the faith

The scoring hasn’t been as proficient from this batch of rookies and a few of them could be on the chopping block for coaches in the coming weeks. Jye Menzie ($381K, 41, BE 25) is the most expensive of the group and failing to add to his point total in the last quarter against the Saints will frustrate his owners. Unless he’s dropped from their team on Thursday night, it’s not time for a trade just yet, while Will Phillips ($314K, 67, BE 8) is in a similar boat. With Jy Simpkin and Luke Davies-Uniacke out of North Melbourne’s side, Phillips helped himself to 74% of the CBA’s and 16 touches which equalled a season-best 67 points. We all expect his midfield minutes to take a hit against Carlton when the aforementioned pair return for North, however, Phillips is still worth holding on to if you’re one of the 18.5% of coaches who invested in the young Roo.

Miller Bergman ($282K, 51, BE 5) and Alwyn Davey Jr ($309K, 56, BE 6) were unlucky to not feature in the above category, although neither of the pair has topped 60 points yet through three games. Both Bergman and Davey Jr are fine bench cover though as they continue to rise in value like well-behaved cash cows. Fergus Greene ($258K, 45, BE 6) is another mainstream forward who is doing his job for the fantasy community and his spot in Hawthorn’s side is solid as a rock with Mitch Lewis still a few weeks away. There were some concerns over Noah Long’s ($256K, 54, BE 5) job security early on, but West Coast’s extensive injury list should see him remain in the team for the foreseeable future; while defensive duo Judd McVee ($268K, 61, BE 5) and Max Michalanney ($342K, 68, BE 10) put forth season-high scores to solidify themselves as fine bench choices down back.

Cut them loose

Very briefly, Tylar Young ($207K, 33, BE 19) shouldn’t be in any fantasy teams right now and I was shocked to see that 33,000 coaches currently own the Richmond rook. Granted, a lot of that percentage can be attributed to auto-fill teams, but if he’s clogging up a list spot in your side, act swiftly. Another defensive cash cow in Campbell Chesser ($237K, 51, BE 8) deserves mention as a chop-out option, with the promising Eagle set to miss at least a few weeks with a knee issue. The severity of Chesser’s injury is still slightly up in the air, but should another DEF rookie bob up when the teams are announced on Thursday night (cough cough Josh Fahey) then there’s nothing wrong with giving him the flick.

GameDay Squad – Create. Coach. Compete.

Thin Ice

I asked for both Chesser and Lachie Cowan ($279K, 45, BE 19) to lift last week and their scores didn’t exactly wow us. Chesser’s injury issue makes it easy for coaches to potentially part ways with him, although Cowan’s scenario is different. Having made $37K on the season so far, the Blues backman hasn’t quite done his job yet and as a result, there are already ~600 coaches who have swung the axe and sent him packing. Should Cowan hold his place in Carlton’s side, I’m sure you have more pressing issues to address.

One of those problems could be removing Mattaes Phillipou ($329K, 40, BE 30) from your starting 22, with the Saints youngster once again failing to fire. After going in to bat for the uber-impressive junior, his talents still haven’t translated to acceptable fantasy numbers and it might be time to cut bait. Personally, I’m going to keep Phillipou and hope he’ll keep slowly ticking up in value, but I don’t blame you if you’re one of the 3.7K who has opted to trade him out. Matchups against Collingwood and Port Adelaide in the next month are extra cause for concern and I’d be making it a near priority to get him off your field.

Wait and see

Sticking with the theme of getting things wrong, I advised coaches to trade Charlie Comben ($334K, 54, BE 23) out last week, only for the North tall to score 43 points in the first half against the Hawks. He cooled off from that point and even though he seems to have locked down a supporting ruck role, Callum-Coleman Jones may steal his spot after spending a week or two in the 2’s. Don’t fall for the trap, ignore Comben for now. In the same game, Tyler Brockman ($301K, 80, BE 1) turned heads in his first AFL match of the season, scoring a career-best 80 points thanks to three important goals. I wouldn’t invest in him given his inflated price tag, and the same could be said for Harry Rowston ($273K, 56, BE 22) who surprisingly kept his spot in GWS’ side even with Josh Kelly and Lachie Whitfield returning. Debutant Arthur Jones ($200K, 18, BE 34) didn’t produce the fantasy score we would’ve liked either, meaning you can leave him out of your squad until we see otherwise.

Sub status

Subbed On – Conor Stone, Matt Roberts, Elijah Hewett, Matt Johnson

Subbed Off – Samson Ryan

It was no surprise to see New South Wales residents Conor Stone ($237K, 15, BE 39) and Matt Roberts ($200K, 11, BE 47) maintaining their roles as the sub, with the pair hardly worth a mention in fantasy circles right now. However, the starting subs in the Western Derby could both intrigue coaches with Elijah Hewett ($257K, 55, BE 26) one to watch in particular. There are still concerns over his ability to run out a full AFL game, but Hewett made the most of his 58% of game time on Sunday and he should have plenty of opportunity moving forward. Freo’s substitute Matthew Johnson ($200K, 24, BE 24) wasn’t granted the same chance, although he did enough to ensure he’ll stay on our radar as a possible downgrade. The only cash cow who saw his night end early in Round 3 was Samson Ryan ($235K, 15, BE 21) and hopefully it’s not a trend that continues for the Tiger’s second fiddle ruckman.

Reserves Watch

There was a large group of cash cows who made headlines over the weekend for their performances at the state league level. The hot name on everyone’s lips right now is Josh Fahey ($200K, 153, BE 25), thanks to his breathtaking 40 disposals that included 32 kicks! If he isn’t given a berth for Round 4, we may have another defensive downgrade option in Alex Cincotta ($200K, 110, BE 25) who scored a team-high 110 points against GWS’ reserves side. Saturday saw Collingwood pair Finlay Macrae ($290K, 113, BE 36) and Ed Allen ($264K, 108, BE 33) raise the bat with fantasy centuries of their own. Macrae continues to build form in the VFL with another 25 touches and two goals, while Allen produced 24 disposals of his own mixed in with 6 tackles and 6 marks. Their teammate Jaokb Ryan ($246K, 99, BE 31) is probably further down the selection pecking order, but he had a solid score 0f 99 thanks to 23 disposals and 10 marks.

North Melbourne’s George Wardlaw ($294K, 93, BE 37) managed to play his first full game for the club against Southport and accumulated plenty of stats along the way. He may still have to wait a few weeks until he’s given a chance at the AFL level, but coaches still need to keep a close eye on the midfield prospect. Another cheaper MID who may entice coaches after a strong VFL game is Jack Bytel ($340K, 126, BE 7) with the St Kilda young gun producing 34 disposals and a pair of goals for Sandringham last weekend. You’d expect Bytel to be squarely in the mix for a spot in their squad to take on the Suns in Round 4, and there are bound to be some coaches who will bring him into their team if he does make the cut.

Speaking of the Suns, their kids ran riot against Geelong’s VFL side in a mammoth 107-point win on Sunday. Ruckman Ned Moyle ($200K, 120, BE 25) top scored thanks to 21 touches and 37 hitouts, while Bailey Humphrey ($290K, 71, BE 36) and Bodhi Uwland ($257K, 71, BE 10) got in on the scoring action too. I’m not sure the Suns will be eager to alter a team that defeated the reigning premiers, but we could see one or more of these cash cows given a chance in the near future. For Syndey, Angus Sheldrick ($200K, 106, BE 25) could be given a chance to add to his 2-game tally after he recorded a game-high 34 disposals in their loss to Casey. It’s possible he squeezes Roberts out of the vest and is given a chance to play limited game time against Port Adelaide. Switching over to the SANFL, the only rook worth acknowledging from the weekend was Josh Sinn ($233K, 93, BE 29) with the second-year Port speedster gathering 19 touches, laying 7 tackles and finishing with 93 points.

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)
Josh Weddle (Hawks, $266K)
Rhett Montgomerie (Bombers, $200K)
Jaokb Ryan (Magpies, $246K)
Corey Wagner (Dockers, $285K)
Sam Banks (Tigers, $200K)
Sam Durdin (Blues, $213K)
Darragh Joyce (Lions, $241K)


Connor Blakely (Suns, $235K)
Jhye Clark (Cats, $286K)
Blake Drury (Kangaroos, $200K)
Angus Sheldrick (Swans, $200K)
Billy Dowling (Crows, $216K)
Elijah Tsatas (Bombers, $292K)
Darcy Jones (Giants, $260K)
Ed Allen (Magpies, $264K)
Hugh Bond (Crows, $202K)
Jaspa Fletcher (Lions, $278K)
George Wardlaw (Kangaroos, $294K)
Henry Hustwaite (Hawks, $228K)


Jacob Edwards (Kangaroos, $200K)
Lachlan McAndrew (Swans, $200K)
Alex Mirkov (Blues, $200K)
Ned Moyle (Suns, $200K)
Harry Barnett (Eagles, $256K)
Max Heath (Saints, $200K)
Dante Visentini (Power, $200K)


Josh Sinn (Power, $233K)
Thomas Berry (Suns, $286K)
James Tsitas (Suns, $200K)
Jaxon Binns (Blues, $238K)
Angus Sheldrick (Swans, $200K)
Joe Richards (Magpies, $206K)
Ollie Dempsey (Cats, $200K)
Finlay Macrae (Magpies, $290K)
Dylan Williams (Power, $200K)
Sam Sturt (Dockers, $200K)
Bailey Humphrey (Suns, $290K)
Patrick Voss (Bombers, $200K)
Aaron Cadman (Giants, $300K)

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! ✌️

An Australian coffee/burrito enthusiast who is the frustrated owner of 16 fantasy teams. Writer for SportsbyFry and DT Talk ?

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