Player Watch #17: James Stewart - Still sidelined with groin injury - 18/6

fairbump_playon

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Similar to last preseason; he looks amazing on the training track in preseason, but has to produce it in actual games.

Has all the physical tools to be a quality AFL level forward, just whether he's got the nous and work-rate to make it.
He's got the work-rate for sure. Nous - I'm happy with his leading patterns as a CHF but he could improve his level of involvement.

I think what he needs is confidence - particularly the belief to to own aerial contests.

But fair call - Essendon fields isn't the MCG. It would make a massive difference for us if he could take a big step forward. Let's see.
 

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owen87

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He's got the work-rate for sure. Nous - I'm happy with his leading patterns as a CHF but he could improve his level of involvement.

I think what he needs is confidence - particularly the belief to to own aerial contests.

But fair call - Essendon fields isn't the MCG. It would make a massive difference for us if he could take a big step forward. Let's see.
Work-rate and nous probably weren't specifically the right terms; I think he's got the physical attributes to make it (good height and build, strong aerobic capacity etc..) and it'll come down to how hard he's willing to work to get the most out of himself - he's not such a talent that he can get by without the work - and his ability and attitude to work intelligently with the team / other forwards / coaches to execute his role.

He seems to look strong in pre-season, but I've never seen him really impose himself or dominate a game at VFL or AFL level - I don't watch a lot of VFL so rely on reports but don't recall reading anything to that end.

He's still young and has time on his side, if he can be a reliable tall forward he'll be a fantastic pairing with Daniher for a long time.
 

Liberator

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Work-rate and nous probably weren't specifically the right terms; I think he's got the physical attributes to make it (good height and build, strong aerobic capacity etc..) and it'll come down to how hard he's willing to work to get the most out of himself - he's not such a talent that he can get by without the work - and his ability and attitude to work intelligently with the team / other forwards / coaches to execute his role.

He seems to look strong in pre-season, but I've never seen him really impose himself or dominate a game at VFL or AFL level - I don't watch a lot of VFL so rely on reports but don't recall reading anything to that end.

He's still young and has time on his side, if he can be a reliable tall forward he'll be a fantastic pairing with Daniher for a long time.
He was excellent in that VFL final - against Collingwood if my memory isn't completive dudding out? Took a lot of contested marks, looked to have turned some kind of corner.
I think he becomes a lot more viable as soon as his kicking for goal improves... Whether that's as a sort of hybrid tall flanker (what he's always been) or whether he does blossom into a real KPF target man, that's the puzzle piece for me. Maybe confidence is the real underlying cause as you say.
I've been critical in the past a little bit but I wouldn't write him off. It's team balance that's the issue - you can only have so many above 195ish cm cavorting around a forward line. But he'll get his chances this year...
 

fairbump_playon

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Work-rate and nous probably weren't specifically the right terms; I think he's got the physical attributes to make it (good height and build, strong aerobic capacity etc..) and it'll come down to how hard he's willing to work to get the most out of himself - he's not such a talent that he can get by without the work - and his ability and attitude to work intelligently with the team / other forwards / coaches to execute his role.

He seems to look strong in pre-season, but I've never seen him really impose himself or dominate a game at VFL or AFL level - I don't watch a lot of VFL so rely on reports but don't recall reading anything to that end.

He's still young and has time on his side, if he can be a reliable tall forward he'll be a fantastic pairing with Daniher for a long time.
Yep, gotcha. The difference between work rate that means you can run 15kms a game vs work ethic required to master a more complex weakness like marking the ball in traffic. Some guys just like working hard on the stuff they are good at.

I wonder how sports psychology is going these days? A bit of time on the couch might be more productive than extra sets of bicep curls.
 

owen87

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Yep, gotcha. The difference between work rate that means you can run 15kms a game vs work ethic required to master a more complex weakness like marking the ball in traffic. Some guys just like working hard on the stuff they are good at.

I wonder how sports psychology is going these days? A bit of time on the couch might be more productive than extra sets of bicep curls.
Things like continuing to run and present deep in to the quarter as you fatigue, or when you’ve not had a good game / much impact but continuing to offer a target.

Darling / Kennedy in the GF were fairly well held for large portions of it, but they continued to run and present and work until it turned in their favour.

I think long term Stewart is a wonderfully mobile tall that means he can play as a KPP target or a flanker, so a Stringer - Daniher - Stewart forwardline is mobile enough to work.
 

Bombers36

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Anyone know whats going on with James Stewart? Hasn't been a lot of talk about him this year and Im wondering if he's injured or something else is going on...??
I thought he was really good in 2017 where he averaged 1.4 goals a game for the year, and he was on fire early in 2018 averaging 2.5 goals in the 1st 4 games...!!!
But then he seemingly stopped getting the pill and his form dropped right off (was possibly injured?) and he was dropped mid way through last year...
Last I heard he played a decent game in the reserves final but not sure where he is at now..?? Is he still an option at AFL level..??
 

citizen-erased

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Anyone know whats going on with James Stewart? Hasn't been a lot of talk about him this year and Im wondering if he's injured or something else is going on...??
I thought he was really good in 2017 where he averaged 1.4 goals a game for the year, and he was on fire early in 2018 averaging 2.5 goals in the 1st 4 games...!!!
But then he seemingly stopped getting the pill and his form dropped right off (was possibly injured?) and he was dropped mid way through last year...
Last I heard he played a decent game in the reserves final but not sure where he is at now..?? Is he still an option at AFL level..??
With "going full Essington" being the only logical explanation, he is currently behind Brown and McKernan it would seem.

He had a couple of games where he dipped in form last year. Early on when the team was flying, and hasn't regained his spot since.
Given Brown and McKernan have a higher potential, my guess is we are exploring that and giving the young players a chance to show what they have........

sarcasm over.
Who even knows
Joins Laverde & Ridley this week as the players where i scratch my head wondering why we aren't focusing on getting AFL games into these guys.

Last night was disheartening to watch
Pies have turned the likes of Aish, Mayne & Cox into world beaters.

We are a sham of an outfit compared to them
 

boncer34

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Kicked 5 goals in 7 games.

Lets not rewrite history and pretend he wasn't stinking it up for nearly 2 months prior to being dropped.
 

Mr Mojo Risin

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Kicked 5 goals in 7 games.

Lets not rewrite history and pretend he wasn't stinking it up for nearly 2 months prior to being dropped.
The whole team was **** and being in the forward line of that team is hard than later in the year.

I don’t have a huge issue with Brown and McKernan but context is important.
 

boncer34

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The whole team was **** and being in the forward line of that team is hard than later in the year.

I don’t have a huge issue with Brown and McKernan but context is important.
Or we started to play better because we had better forward targets? And no I'm not saying dropping Stewart made us a better side but its just as much a chance as your theory.

And he was part of the "revival" against Geelong and GWS and still put out nothing. I have no issues slamming the coaches for their moronic selections but this bloke deserved to be dropped.
He went through a bad patch with the team.

That's no excuse to pretend Mitch Brown is a key forward.
If only I'd mentioned Brown.
 

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DapperJong

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The thing with Brown is he quite often put those 2/3 goals on the oard and took those 2/3 very important marks down field.

He saved us from losses quite a few times last year.

Despite that, why do i still see Stewart as the better option? I want us to persist with him because I think he can be better than Brown. Is it just because he looks more likely?
 

boncer34

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The thing with Brown is he quite often put those 2/3 goals on the oard and took those 2/3 very important marks down field.

He saved us from losses quite a few times last year.

Despite that, why do i still see Stewart as the better option? I want us to persist with him because I think he can be better than Brown. Is it just because he looks more likely?
James is 25 and entering his peak. He still has a little bit of that dreaded p word.

Mitch aint getting better than what we see now.
 

fishardansin

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He went through a bad patch with the team.

That's no excuse to pretend Mitch Brown is a key forward.
I think the problem with Stewart is that club stuffed up thinking he was a power forward in the making. What made him a good player through 2017 was having Daniher and Hooker in the forward line allowing him to work up the ground. He should not have hit the gym so hard before 2018. Just because he's 198cm does not make him a power forward.

I personally think that it was the first time I can remember than Essendon had a player who was tall enough to be a marking option who ran and ran. This ensured we had an option all the time. Essendon will be a much better side when Worsfold works out that we will be best served with Steward playing as a very oversized forward flanker (a very mobile marking target for our defenders), Daniher as a traditional CHF leading up at the ball from 50m to 80m from goal and a strong bodied marking option deep with the two dangerous small forwards working off that. With the height of our capable KPDs (Hartley going backwards since 2016 is disappointing), we need Hooker down back, but he would have been my prefered option with that. Despite being undersized for that role Stringer is a good option because he can add a tiny bit to midfield rotations.

For our 6th forward I would prefer we have Laverde on a flank as a young guy who can take a mark but also expected to run like a mid to potentially increase his time in the midfield. This gives us a good look at Laverde with consistent games in the 1s, pinch-hitting in the middle. If he doesn't grab the opportunity, then we have to let him go.

So, I think to have Stewart as the running third tall increases the mobility of our whole forward line. I believe he was our barometer in 2017. When he was getting a lot of the ball it meant we were moving the ball quickly and usually ended up kicking a big score, regardless of how many times he hit the scoreboard. I also think that Laverde can add to that, and increase his running capacity, plus add some size around the ball. I think Daniher leading up at the ball alongside Stewart leading even more than Daniher means that if they get some chemistry they should split the zoning intercept markers from the opposition. This will lead to quick ball movement. Stringer, Tippa and Fantasia are very good at taking advantage of the chaos caused to opposing defence when we have a few channels to move the ball quickly through.

These channels are the two tall half forwards as well as the blistering run McKenna and Saad provide. I also think it helps our defence. Leaving room for these guys to lead into pulls the opposition's forward press back, it also means our midfield can fold back further.

I think this is how Stewart can best serve our side. I was saying this last year when he came out of preseason with what looked like an extra 5kg of muscle. I hope the club haven't stuffed him.
 

kelvin_sheedy

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I'd rather be getting games in Stewart than Mitch Brown. He has more physical attributes and is the only one of them two that has any chance to make it at a level that may warrant a starting position in a top 4 side.

Hopes are not high but I'd rather give him a 12 week block and see what happens.
 

Lore

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Is he injured or something? He didn't play the VFL practise match last weekend either. Last time I saw anything about him he was named emergency in JLT2
 

Seb78

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Is this bloke even in the mix for Friday night? Worth a look i reckon to see where his forms at.
Unfortunately even he if was available he probably wouldn't even get a look in anyway seems to be the 3rd wheel behind McKernan and Brown. Personally I'd like to see him come in for McKernan.
 
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fairbump_playon

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The thing with Brown is he quite often put those 2/3 goals on the board and took those 2/3 very important marks down field.

He saved us from losses quite a few times last year.

Despite that, why do i still see Stewart as the better option? I want us to persist with him because I think he can be better than Brown. Is it just because he looks more likely?
He looks so ....key.

We have a team of midgets getting outmarked all over the field. One's brain pictures James Stewart and simply cannot compute the idea he might not be part of the solution. He feels right.

On the other hand, Mitch "the Science Teacher" Brown takes me back to mental images of bunsen burners, post-lunch drowsiness and the slightly see-through back of Sarah McGraw's school shirt. And that's a totally different feeling.
 

Bjchan13

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Unfortunately even he if was available he probably wouldn't even get a look in anyway seems to be the 3rd wheel behind McKernan and Brown. Personally I'd likevto see him come in for McKernan.
Yeah i can understand if those 2 are in form and we're winning then Stewart has to wait for an opening but we're losing and kicking terrible scores. Hopefully they give him a run soon.
 

BomberTime

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Not playing VFL...not mentioned in the Skins report...

Rip James.
 

JayJ20

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Where is he? /last I heard of him he had an injury of some sort. Might have been in between JLT 2 and round 1.
 

_Swoon

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Maybe he has a serious case of CBF stemming from having Brown and McKernan played ahead of him for no discernible reason
 

Bunk Moreland

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He’s not a McKernan replacement, they’re fairly different players. McKernan is a genuine target / contested mark, Stewart better as a running, high leading quasi-flanker.

He and Brown are basically interchangeable, that’s who he’ll have to replace I think. We already have next to no forward marking targets, we can’t drop McKernan.
 
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