Player Watch #24: Nick Bryan - Welcome to Essendon!

eDPS

Devon Goods
Nov 4, 2010
18,705
26,945
Melbourne - Eastern Suburbs
AFL Club
Essendon
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Blue = Elite
Green = Above Average
Yellow = Average
Red = Below Average

DRAFT ANALYSIS: "A developing ruck who has terrific athleticism and a high ceiling, Bryan just needs to build his consistency and have more of a presence around the ground to further build his game."
ONE player who was the talk of the AFL Draft crop at the start of the year was Nick Bryan. The Oakleigh Chargers’ ruck burst onto the scene after being not in draft contention as a bottom-ager, but through hard work and his testing results, was suddenly in the eyes of most clubs. Through no fault of his own other than being a phenomenal athlete, Bryan was talked up by some draft watchers as a first round pick. He blitzed the 20-metre sprint in the NAB League Fitness Testing Day, clocking up a 2.91-second 20-metre sprint, which for a 202cm player is remarkable, and showed in patches what he is capable of as a bottom-ager in limited games. As the season went on, and the Under-18 National Championships showed, Bryan still has a long way to go despite his obvious athleticism and upside. In the NAB League finals series, Bryan pieced together a number of strong performances on the big stage, and showed recruiters just what he could do once again, but as a whole, he still has plenty of development – and more importantly time – on his side.
STRENGTHS:
Ruck work
Vertical leap
Speed
Upside
Skill
IMPROVEMENTS:
Consistency
Scoreboard impact
Contested marking
While it might be said Bryan did not produce the hype that many had thought pre-season, the hype surrounding a 202cm player should always be fraught with danger. His best is very impressive, with his ruck work, vertical leap and athleticism highlights of his game. But at the end of the day, outside the top elite talents in each draft, most talls are still raw and developing, and Bryan, considering he has not had as much time in an elite system compared to some, is no different. It is more his presence around the ground with his contested marking and scoreboard impact, playing a role as a forward and consistently impacting the contest in that way. When at ruck stoppages, Bryan is hard to beat with his vertical leap and when he chooses to use it, his breakaway speed. In the pre-season testing, not only did Bryan clock up the 2.91-second 20-metre sprint, but also recorded 78cm on the running vertical jump. He improved that to 85cm at the National Draft Combine, while his standing vertical improved from 56cm to 69cm, showing he had been working hard off the field. His 20m went above the three seconds, but Bryan also spent time building strength on his lighter frame, which ultimately slows players down.
While Bryan’s inconsistent year saw Luke Jackson claim the standout number one ruck draft prospect title, Bryan is among a number of others, such as Charlie Comben, Callum Jamieson and Jack Bell who received National Draft Combine invites and are next in line in terms of ruck stocks. Bryan is likely to be second or third selected with Comben, and his upside certainly helps. One aspect where Bryan stands out from many other talls is his skill by hand being able to feed his midfielders and give it off cleanly though the middle. Any ruck that can have that speed and vertical leap as a combination makes him an interesting prospect. His work during the NAB League Finals series was very good, taking control against stronger rucks who he might have been outbodied against in the pre-season, now he was beating. In his final three games, Bryan had season-highs of 13, 15 and 20 touches, getting more involved around the ground, taking a combined nine marks in his two final games – showing improvement in his contested marking. He was dominant early in the first term of the Grand Final, setting the tone against the much stronger Riley Smith, but working his way to 20 touches, 26 hitouts and four marks, including 10 in the first quarter. It showed just what he is capable of, and if clubs look past the inconsistency and work earlier in the season while he was still developing, then Bryan is a player who has a bright future ahead of him. He is likely to be that mid-draft selection, which is normal for a ruck, and with his big-game experience late in the year, Bryan will have turned a few heads with his performances.
DRAFT RANGE: 35-65
 
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BrunoV

Brownlow Medallist
May 5, 2009
16,064
19,733
AFL Club
Essendon
Please to read "A developing ruck who has terrific athleticism and a high ceiling".


Surprised that we've taken another ruckman. I think we're tipping a cap to the reality that Hurley, Hooker and Bellchambers are all something much closer to cooked than not.
 

BrunoV

Brownlow Medallist
May 5, 2009
16,064
19,733
AFL Club
Essendon
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From the Draft Central Draft Guide:

"After a 2.91-second 20-metre sprint at the NAB League Fitness Testing Day, Bryan was talked up as one of the top ruck prospects in this year’s draft. While his year has not had the consistency that he would have liked, he has still developed nicely over the past couple of years. He played one of his best games in the NAB League Grand Final and has all the traits to be an athletic ruck."
 

DERO

NOBODY PUTS BABY IN THE CORNER
Jan 22, 2013
15,659
20,261
The Ivory Tower
AFL Club
Essendon
Other Teams
Mitcham FC
View attachment 786363

From the Draft Central Draft Guide:

"After a 2.91-second 20-metre sprint at the NAB League Fitness Testing Day, Bryan was talked up as one of the top ruck prospects in this year’s draft. While his year has not had the consistency that he would have liked, he has still developed nicely over the past couple of years. He played one of his best games in the NAB League Grand Final and has all the traits to be an athletic ruck."
what do the colour codes represent?
 

Towno78

Premiership Player
Nov 6, 2009
3,442
2,579
AFL Club
Essendon
View attachment 786363

From the Draft Central Draft Guide:

"After a 2.91-second 20-metre sprint at the NAB League Fitness Testing Day, Bryan was talked up as one of the top ruck prospects in this year’s draft. While his year has not had the consistency that he would have liked, he has still developed nicely over the past couple of years. He played one of his best games in the NAB League Grand Final and has all the traits to be an athletic ruck."
2.91s 20m is bloody moving for a big guy!
 

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naraku

Team Captain
Sep 9, 2017
462
239
AFL Club
Essendon
Other Teams
A.C. Milan
I was surprised we took him, but I guess looking forward TBC probably only has 2-3 year's max depending. Draper we have to hope comes back from ACL well and Phillips is a an unknown what he might do with us.

Good luck to the kid.
 

Keystone agony

Brownlow Medallist
Aug 15, 2011
15,454
4,268
AFL Club
Essendon
Other Teams
Port Adelaide
Not many of Hooker, Hurley, TBC, Ambrose, Daniher, Mckernan, A.Phillips will be on the list in 36 months time

Plus we just lost M.Brown and Hartley
 

ghostdog

Norm Smith Medallist
Oct 18, 2008
6,787
3,057
gondawanaland
AFL Club
Essendon
I was surprised we took him, but I guess looking forward TBC probably only has 2-3 year's max depending. Draper we have to hope comes back from ACL well and Phillips is a an unknown what he might do with us.

Good luck to the kid.
If Bellchambers has to stay on the list for 2 years we're looking at a world of pain.
 

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