Player Watch #18: Shaun Atley -

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Moti

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 4, 2001
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Love watching him shake off tackles, usually gets us out of bad situations. With Crocker and Murphy coming through, still want to see what he can do as part of the centre square rotation.
 

Kimbo

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Dec 14, 2002
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He’s having a career best year. Rapt for him. Looks like he’s ready to dominate a game soon. Reckon the form we’re seeing from him now is the minimum we can expect for the rest of his career. Something has twigged for sure.
Big men take time. + Atley.
 

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Snake_Baker

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Apr 24, 2013
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He’s having a career best year. Rapt for him. Looks like he’s ready to dominate a game soon. Reckon the form we’re seeing from him now is the minimum we can expect for the rest of his career. Something has twigged for sure.

He's played all of his career under a rigid structure.

It would be good to see him freed up to play more instinctively.
 

King Corey

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Jun 9, 2001
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Great game from Atley, I loved this moment after a shank from Ziebell. It was at this moment I felt things were really starting to go our way. Also shows just how fast Dustin Martin is.
That's one of those early pivotal moments that gives you a hint of an upset.

I know this because I'm very alert to it happening the other way around. Usually when someone like Liam Picken dragged down a mark between Thompson, Tarrant, Goldstein and Petrie and let you know "this night is probably not going to be the one you thought it would".
 

Kimbo

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He's played all of his career under a rigid structure.

It would be good to see him freed up to play more instinctively.
Rubbish. There was nothing stopping him displaying the composure he’s shown this year in past years.

Indeed his inability to do so is arguably a reason we haven’t had more success.

He started displaying this form under those same rigid structures.
 

Shermanator

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Mar 23, 2001
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That's one of those early pivotal moments that gives you a hint of an upset.

I know this because I'm very alert to it happening the other way around. Usually when someone like Liam Picken dragged down a mark between Thompson, Tarrant, Goldstein and Petrie and let you know "this night is probably not going to be the one you thought it would".
Yeah I thought the same, you can usually tell by a few lucky bounces or a passage of play like Higgins shrugging (not one, not two, but three tackles only to handball to Polec who kicks a freak goal) that it’s going to be our night.

Loved how Ats threw Dusty to the ground like he was telling him “and stick ya $1.1 mill a season in ya cakehole!”..
 

JeanLucGoddard

Norm Smith Medallist
Aug 21, 2018
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He's added a quality fend off to his game, some blokes are far better in the back end of their career. Shaun's played 187 and I see no reason why he can't play 250-300.

Reckon his games 150-250 will be absolutely top shelf.

Shortsteps has played his best footy already, he'll rapidly deteriorate from here.
 

muttley45

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May 4, 2009
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My one query of Shaun is why, almost every time he plays on, does he take a bounce after 1-2 steps ? he has the pace to put the foot down, build up a bit of momentum, and get some separation and time to asess options, and not give opposition time to pressure/tackle.
 

Snake_Baker

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My one query of Shaun is why, almost every time he plays on, does he take a bounce after 1-2 steps ? he has the pace to put the foot down, build up a bit of momentum, and get some separation and time to asess options, and not give opposition time to pressure/tackle.

IMO, he utilises this to set up and look for options.

I also reckon he hands off too quickly a lot of the time when he should go all the way to goal, but I figure that's a defensive instinct to get back and cover his opponent that was trained in to him by Brad. You saw it last week when he loomed up on foward 60, then roosted a long bomb on goal when he could have just kept going.

I hope Rhyce also makes Shaun one his targets to play more freely. I'd like to see that stuff trained out of him now.
 

roos_tt29

Senior List
Oct 6, 2015
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I need to put my hand up here - Atley has proved me wrong this year.

I always questioned his decision making and disposal on the run. This year, he has looked like one of the most composed footballers in our side!
He looks as though he's now taking an extra second to decide on the best option while backing is strength in the contest (which also looks to have improved).

His field kicking this year has been sublime - looking like a late bloomer.

Keep it up Ats!
 
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ferball

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Jul 24, 2015
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Good choice not to include the kick in that gif :thumbsu:
The juxtaposition of him showcasing the poise and new ceiling that he's displayed this year, with the same old **** that used to let him down so frequently.
When I opened BF this morning this thread was right below the "Do we honor honour our Keef enough" thread.

And thinking about it I totally understand why people have such high expectations of Ats. In some ways he's the closest we have had to KG since. He's fast and agile/mobile, he doesn't shirk contests (tho he could run harder in defense imo), and he's not footy stupid but his skills and vision are just not at the same level. He might have been nearly as good back in the day when there was more space and less structure to the game tho.
 

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