Player Watch #26: Cale Hooker

Lore

Moderator ❀
Dec 14, 2015
18,990
22,943
AFL Club
Essendon
26 - Cale Hooker.jpg

Contract Status: Unrestricted Free Agent 2021
Last Game Played: Round 16, 2020 (omitted due to form)
Injury Status: n/a
 
Last edited:

Seb78

Club Legend
Aug 27, 2008
2,738
1,581
Melbourne
AFL Club
Essendon
Hey quick question.

Is there still such a thing as a veterans list and would Hooksey and Zaka be eligible to be put on it? Could it help with Salary cap pressure?
 

Colonelmot

Senior List
Jul 20, 2012
159
158
AFL Club
Essendon
Feels like he's gone off a cliff this year in defence. Apart from a few cameos forward when was the last time he played a great game? Doesn't bode well for next year.
 

Legend Lucas

Debutant
Sep 14, 2006
91
49
AFL Club
Essendon
Feels like he's gone off a cliff this year in defence. Apart from a few cameos forward when was the last time he played a great game? Doesn't bode well for next year.
Yep completely agree I have been his biggest supporter.
Hoping he is carrying some injuries because if he isn’t he is done. His last 12 games were awful dropping marks he never dropped and always out of position feels like the end has come very quickly for him.
 

Darealrath

Brownlow Medallist
Jul 6, 2002
11,797
3,006
Melbourne
AFL Club
Essendon
Other Teams
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Think we are going to have to manage him over the next two seasons. Aim for 18 quality games instead of 22 because it looks like his body is just hanging on.
 

Mikevk123

Club Legend
Jun 25, 2019
1,144
911
AFL Club
Essendon
Still only 30 years old. He’s not gonna get any younger. If Francis does leave he will be key to develop Zerk. Re do deals on Hooker and zakka. Ask them to take pay cuts.
 

Bjchan13

Club Legend
Jul 23, 2018
1,598
1,286
AFL Club
Essendon
Even if it causes short term pain, id prefer Hooker to go forward permanently again like 2017. BZT and Francis need to play every week alongside Ambrose and Hurls.
 

Matthew_Lloyd

Premiership Player
Apr 27, 2013
3,522
4,316
AFL Club
Essendon
Cale will definitely be aware that he is almost at the end. We won't trade him, but I'd like to think we will start playing BZT more in the seniors next year. Get Daniher fit, and play Hooker as our second forward. Very good chance that 2020 will be his last.

His body is starting to fail him. I hope he can rejuvenate himself this off-season, and give us one more year of good football.
 

Nifft

Club Legend
Nov 2, 2010
1,953
2,371
Melbourne
AFL Club
Essendon
Think the fact that he turns up on day 1 of preseason speaks volumes.

Doesn’t have to be in the leadership group to be the Rock of Gibraltar for this club, in fact I would argue that he’s earned the right to not be in the leadership group.
I wish I could like this more than once. This guy has so much heart, would've been a great captain I think.
 

bombreys

Club Legend
May 8, 2015
1,683
1,115
AFL Club
Essendon
Think the fact that he turns up on day 1 of preseason speaks volumes.

Doesn’t have to be in the leadership group to be the Rock of Gibraltar for this club, in fact I would argue that he’s earned the right to not be in the leadership group.
Was there ever a reason or story behind any of the leadership stuff? Did he just not enjoy/want to be in it? Would have thought he'd be close to the first member selected.
 

fairbump_playon

Club Legend
Jun 27, 2014
1,817
2,356
AFL Club
Essendon
Was there ever a reason or story behind any of the leadership stuff? Did he just not enjoy/want to be in it? Would have thought he'd be close to the first member selected.
Apparently he wasn’t doing enough yoga and pilates for someone his age and therefore when running during games he looked like an elderly mummy in a tight corset. They decided that was bad optics for the leadership team.
 

Yoda_

Brownlow Medallist
May 6, 2007
28,010
13,622
South East Suburbs
AFL Club
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Think the fact that he turns up on day 1 of preseason speaks volumes.

Doesn’t have to be in the leadership group to be the Rock of Gibraltar for this club, in fact I would argue that he’s earned the right to not be in the leadership group.
Always struck me as the sort of guy to step aside to give others a go (re; leadership group). Doesn't need to be given a title to know what needs to be done.
 

blitzer

Norm Smith Medallist
Aug 27, 2006
6,696
7,312
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I'm a lot more bullish about Hooker in 2020 than many in here. I don't think he's done at all.
People forget the bloke had a pretty crappy preseason with a number of injuries that delayed him even playing til about round 4.
He still managed to have a number of match winning performances but predictably struggled to make it to the finish line.

If he can stay healthy through the preseason and maybe get rested a few extra times through the year (so aim to play about 18-20 H&A games) I think he's still capable of being one of our best once again. Could be down back or could be up forward or both.

It does amuse me how at the start of the year "he's moving well, looks like he hasn't lost his pace" - then later struggling with niggling injuries "he's lost his pace, he's cooked". I reckon him staying fit is the problem. You can't tell me his back wasn't a major issue towards the end of this year. He wasn't suffering just from 'old age'.
 

yodellinhank

Brownlow Medallist
Oct 22, 2008
12,201
13,110
Geelong
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Essendon
Always struck me as the sort of guy to step aside to give others a go (re; leadership group). Doesn't need to be given a title to know what needs to be done.
He should've stepped aside and gave someone else a go, but he didn't. He stuck his hand up for selection and played like absolute sh*t.

So no.
 

yodellinhank

Brownlow Medallist
Oct 22, 2008
12,201
13,110
Geelong
AFL Club
Essendon
Absolute sh*t my arse.
He was still a better option than the next available. Are you suggesting we shouldn’t have played him when Hurley was out?
I'm suggesting he got absolutely towelled up by Jenkins and had to be shifted. Hartley then did a good job in defence and was dropped to the 2nds (while Hooker continued to stink it up and play like absolute sh*t) and then walked out of the club for more opportunitues.

The comment Cale would gladly stand aside from the leadership group doesn't seem to match up. Especially when all the word about he and hurley not being in the leadership group is that it caused a stink.
 

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