Back again for the third lot of our predicted sides. This time around two SuperCoach HQ writers – including a Ballarat Courier journalist – and Alex Boevich, more commonly known as Jock Reynolds’ writer Lekdog, have had their two cents worth.
Carlton – Alex Beovich – @LekBlog
B: Weitering, Plowman, Rowe
HB: Docherty, Marchbank, Simpson
C: E.Curnow, Gibbs, Kerridge
HF: Palmer, C.Curnow, Wright
F: Thomas, Casboult, J.Silvagni
FOL: Kreuzer, Cripps, Murphy
INT: White, Armfield, Smedts, Pickett
Next in line: McKay, Cunningham, Lamb
Comments: It’s a really nice back 6 lining up in Round 1 for the Blues, but forward of the centre it’s a nightmare. Carlton’s lack of forward options may see McKay named to kick off the season against the Tiger’s, but if he doesn’t make the cut we’ll see him thought the year. Injuries to Buckley, Phillips and first round pick Petrevski-Seton have limited the Blues talent pool for Round 1. Expect to see a smattering of games from Carlton’s youth (Polson, Fisher, Sumner, Macreadie & Williamson) throughout 2017, as well as rookie-listed veteran Alex Silvagni in the event that a key defender goes down.
Geelong – Daniel Short – @DanielShort324
B: Stewart, Lonergan, Mackie
HB: Tuohy, Henderson, Thurlow
C: Blicavs, Dangerfield, Guthrie
HF: Cockatoo, Taylor, Motlop
F: Menzel, Hawkins, McCarthy
FOL: Stanley, J.Selwood, Duncan
INT: Horlin-Smith, Parfitt, Z.Smith, Menegola
Next in line: Lang, Cowan, Black
Comments: The main discussion around Geelong’s best 22 has been the forward line set-up and at this stage the Cats will persist with Harry Taylor in attack. This leaves potential SuperCoach cash cow Aaron Black on the outer. The Cats tread a fine line when it comes to balancing its tall timber, Black will certainly play in 2017, the question is when. Zac Smith is on thin ice after an underwhelming JLT Community Series, which could pave the way for Black’s first appearance. Otherwise, I expect Tom Stewart and Brandan Parfitt to debut in round 1, which will be music to the ears of all SuperCoachers. Zach Tuohy will be a welcome inclusion to the back six and Geelong will look to get the ball into his hands as often as possible. The Cats will continue to demand an improvement from its second tier of players through the midfield while its small forward candidates of Menzel, McCarthy, Motlop, Lang and Cockatoo will be vying for position in an area the Cats need to be more potent.
Sydney – Matthew Storey – @MattJStorey
B: N.Smith, Grundy, Rampe
HB: lloyd, Aliir, Mills
C: Z.Jones, Cunningham, Parker
HF: Towers, Franklin, K.Jack
F: Hewett, Tippett, Reid
FOL: Naismith, Kennedy, Hannebery
INT: Melican, Florent, Robinson, Marsh
Next in line: Laider, Cameron, Fox, Edwards, Newman
Comments: A fair few injuries for the Swans to deal with heading into the start of season, but as we know they don’t mind playing the rookies. The likes of Rohan, McVeigh, Papley will all be missing and Aliir and Jack come into the first round under massive injury clouds having not played a minute of JLT. The Swans top pick from last years draft, Oliver Florent should debut as should Lewis Melican. While this is a young Swans team expect them to still be very difficult to beat.