Danger high voltage: 2010 Round 1 projections v2 (4/4)

Adelaide’s Patrick Dangerfield is one of a dozen Crows who have spent time on the injury list leading up to round 1.

I am breaking this second edition of the team projections up into four posts, because they are taking me a looooong time to compile. I am including injury and suspension and retirement lists for each team as usual. Keep in mind that these are all projected for round 1, so that some who are currently injured are not labeled as such because I expect them to recover in time.

Western Bulldogs
FB: Tom Williams, Brian Lake, Jarrod Harbrow
HB: Lindsay Gilbee, Dale Morris, Ryan Hargrave
C: Daniel Cross, Ryan Griffen, Nathan Eagleton
HF: Robert Murphy, Mitch Hahn, Brad Johnson
FF: Shaun Higgins, Barry Hall, Jason Akermanis
Fol: Ben Hudson, Matthew Boyd, Adam Cooney
Int: Will Minson, Daniel Giansiracusa, Liam Picken, Callan Ward
In: Eagleton
Out: Josh Hill
Iffy: Williams, Hill, Picken, Ward
Waiting: Hill, Brodie Moles, Jarrad Grant, Andrejs Everitt
Injured: Christian Howard

I complained in the v1 post about the difficulty of leaving out one of Eagleton, Ward, Hill and Picken. Now that Eagleton looks like he has recovered from the early-season knee surgery, the task is even tougher. Add to that the emergence of mature-aged rookie Moles and the move of Howard to the LTI list to make way for the likely-looking ex-Cat, and coach Rodney Eade has an embarrassment of riches to pick from. No wonder the Dogs are just about flag favourites.

Hahn has been tried as a tall defender in the preseason with some success, suggesting a more permanent move. I suspect, however, that this is merely insurance in case the oft-injured Williams goes down again. He returned to the forward line in his accustomed bullocking role this week, and I think he benefits the team more there anyway.

FB: Harry O’Brien, Simon Prestigiacomo, Alan Toovey
HB: Heath Shaw, Nathan J. Brown, Nick Maxwell
C: Alan Didak, Luke Ball, Leon Davis
HF: Dale Thomas, Travis Cloke, Tarkyn Lockyer
FF: Leigh Brown, John Anthony, Paul Medhurst
Fol: Darren Jolly, Dane Swan, Scott Pendlebury
Int: Josh Fraser, Sharrod Wellingham, Steele Sidebottom, Dayne Beams
In: L. Brown, Beams
Out: Sean Rusling, John McCarthy
Iffy: Wellingham, Toovey, Sidebottom, McCarthy
Waiting: Shane O’Bree, Tyson Goldsack, Ben Johnson, Ben Reid
Injured: Brad Dick, Cameron Wood, Josh Thomas

I didn’t want to do it. I had to pencil Leigh Brown in. Yes, Michael Malthouse is a crazy man. His latest half-cut babbling is that he wants to turn Rusling into a halfback. In your feverish, deranged dreams, Mick.

I’m not confident that both Beams and Sidebottom will play. The strongest arugment for them is that the Pies are going to try to break the record for home & away bench rotations, especially with Ball in the mix now, so younger legs going through midfield will be more important than old stagers like O’Bree or Johnson.

FB: Alex Silvagni, Chris Tarrant, Roger Hayden
HB: Adam McPhee, Luke McPharlin, Stephen Hill
C: Michael Barlow, Paul Hasleby, Paul Duffield
HF: David Mundy, Matthew Pavlich, Chris Mayne
FF: Des Headland, Michael Johnson, Hayden Ballantyne
Fol: Aaron Sandilands, Ryan Crowley, Byron Schammer
Int: Kepler Bradley, Anthony Morabito, Greg Broughton, Matthew de Boer
In: Silvagni, Bradley, Barlow, Morabito, de Boer
Out: Antoni Grover, Rhys Palmer, Dean Solomon, Nick Suban, Garrick Ibbotson
Iffy: Schammer, Solomon, Ibbotson, Suban
Waiting: Ibbotson, Steven Dodd, Michael Walters, Zac Clarke
Injured: Tim Ruffles, Grover, Palmer, Scott Thornton
Retired: Solomon

To listen to Docker fans, you’d think Freo had lost every NAB game by 15 goals. Thread after thread carping about poor preseasons by Ibbotson, Suban, Crowley, Schammer, Dodd, McPhee, Headland… the list of mediocre names goes on. Like the Fremantle list itself, actually.

Okay, so everyone wants to know what the deal will be with the Dockers’ multitudinous rookies who are demanding elevations with hot NAB form. We know that Fremantle have one automatic elevation slot for having only one veteran outside their list, plus Ruffles and Solomon have injuries long enough to be declared LTIs. Grover just about qualifies with his 6-8 week knee injury, and then there’s Thornton whose groin problems are chronic enough to make him an LTI candidate too. de Boer is assured one elevation spot, and even though Grover himself may not go on LTI, Silvagni must take another to cover for him on a list that is bereft of tall defender depth.

The two competitors for the third spot are Barlow and Pearce. I was watching Pearce’s games as much as Barlow’s during the NAB Cup and I thought Pearce’s numbers were inflated somewhat by cheapness that wouldn’t apply during the regular season, especially in the game against North where he sat at full back and took multiple +6 marks-and-kicks acting in the Joel Bowden role, switching to the winger on the fat side. His game on Saturday, on the other hand, was poor enough for some fans to write him off. Barlow is the well-deserved favourite for mine, and should be elevated into the Freo senior list… and onto the benches (if not starting) for thousands of fantasy squads.

Suban has certainly has a preseason to forget, going so badly as to make one wonder if he’s carrying an injury. Crowley and Schammer, meanwhile, may just be carrying a lack of skill. I don’t think coach Harvey has much of a choice with those two though, they have to play because the options aren’t any better. Ibbotson is the subject of much conjecture, with some questioning his commitment, though he seemd to do an okay job on Montagna in the NAB Cup semi-final. It does raise the question of whether Harvey can put Crowley, Ibbotson and de Boer in the one team if they’re all doing tagging roles, though it’s not unheard of.

FB: Graham Johncock, Ben Rutten, Scott Stevens
HB: Simon Goodwin, Nathan Bock, Andrew McLeod
C: David Mackay, Scott Thompson, Patrick Dangerfield
HF: Tyson Edwards, Taylor Walker, Myke Cook
FF: Trent Hentschel, Kurt Tippett, Richard Douglas
Fol: Ivan Maric, Bernie Vince, Nathan Van Berlo
Int: Jonathan Griffin, Shaun McKernan, Brent Reilly, Michael Doughty
In: Stevens, Reilly, Griffin, Douglas, Cook, McKernan
Out: Brad Symes, Chris Knights, Brad Moran, Brett Burton, Jason Porplyzia, Phil Davis
Iffy: Davis, Moran, Doughty, Walker
Waiting: Jack Gunston, Davis, Rory Sloane, James Sellar
Injured: Andy Otten, Brodie Martin, Symes, Knights, Moran, Burton, Porplyzia

I have some bad news for Phil Davis owners. Despite the Adelaide injury list going past a dozen, there still isn’t a place in the 22 for the kid. Your dreams of multipositional flexibility are going to have to rely on a different rookie. He’s not ready.

The SANFL is going to be fairly strong in round 1, I feel, because the recovery times of a lot of these injuries coincide with the opening game against Fremantle at Subiaco, but if I was Neil Craig I wouldn’t be risking the likes of the Birdman or the Porpoise on the hard turf of the west. Craig is such a stickler for fitness that I can see him risking the trip over the Nullarbor with a very understrength side, focusing on youth and pace instead of bigger bodies. Round 2 back at Footy Park against the Swans will merit a very different squad.


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