Player Watch #37: Dylan Clarke

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BrunoV

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What he could do in two years time depends on how much he learns at AFL level.

Development is as much about learning what you can't yet do as it is about crafting what you can do.

We're not winning the flag this year so we might as well give him a run so that he can convert what he does in the VFL at AFL level.
Sure it doesn't mean that he'll stay there all year if he isn't performing, but give him at least 2-3 games so that we know what he can work on at VFL level. He'll know exactly what he struggles with at AFL level. First couple of games are always affected by nerves.

I'd say he has a fairly good idea of what it is he can't do.
 

adsla69k

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The difference is that Clarke's playing a position of need. And given our midfield looked the best it has this year - why change it when Myers definitely wasn't doing much more? Clarke did a lot of great blocking and space creation for the team on the weekend. Seems to have good game IQ for someone playing their first AFL game.
Yep seen him do lots of blocking and Sheppard's. Same with Guilfi. Funny thing was on the wing Clarke done a good shepard and only a minute later same scenario with Adam Saad getting the ball and Goddard didnt sheppard to shake the player off Saads butt. It looked very soft by BJ. For me that was deal breaker and wonder what else BJ doesnt fo fir the team. I'm getting tired of him running around a player outside 50 looking for a cheap kick.
 

Pweter

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Clarke's debut was ok, nothing more. He scrapped and blocked, had a few good disposals and a few crap ones, but for a debut I don't think I expected too much more. He didn't look like a deer in the headlights which is imprtant.

He seemed to have a team first ethos which was refreshing, almost wnating to make it tough for the opposition to enable our guys to create. It's not what he should be basing his game on though, he needs to create a balance between when to go and when to block. By all reports he has no issues with this at VFL so maybe it was first game nerves and wanting to do the small things for the team to the detriment of his natural game.

I wouldn't mind seeing him get another week if not 2. If he can handle himself against the Geelong, GWS and Richmond midfields then we start to get excited about what he could be, if he struggles then he goes back to build his tank, build his body, build his confidence, iron out the deficiencies a bit more until he smashes the door down again.
 

Vander18

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I can see both sides of this....on one hand he probably should get another game as it’s just good practice and he wasn’t that bad. On the other hand, if you’re being ruthless he probably didn’t do enough to keep MacGrath out.

Bloody Baguley has cocked the whole thing up by playing unexpectedly well. If you were being really ruthless you’d drop him anyway, bring MCGrath in and leave Clarke.
 

JDavey

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I can see both sides of this....on one hand he probably should get another game as it’s just good practice and he wasn’t that bad. On the other hand, if you’re being ruthless he probably didn’t do enough to keep MacGrath out.

Bloody Baguley has cocked the whole thing up by playing unexpectedly well. If you were being really ruthless you’d drop him anyway, bring MCGrath in and leave Clarke.
The problem is McGrath isn't structurally a swap for Clarke, or Baguley.

If you're keeping Clarke in you believe its because he showed enough and his ability to create space for fellow midfielders will provide more than Myers can.
If you're keeping Baguley its because you believe his work as a defensive forward should keep Green out.

I think if you want to bring in McGrath you have to take out Dea.
 

blitzer

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The problem is McGrath isn't structurally a swap for Clarke, or Baguley.

If you're keeping Clarke in you believe its because he showed enough and his ability to create space for fellow midfielders will provide more than Myers can.
If you're keeping Baguley its because you believe his work as a defensive forward should keep Green out.

I think if you want to bring in McGrath you have to take out Dea.
I'm not so sure about this. Myers and Langford have interchanged spots in the team all year long.
It might mean some shuffling of chairs but McGrath could come in replace Clarke and then Langford spends more time in the middle.

Neither Baguley or Clarke are playing a particular role which we've seen as important for more than a week or 2 throughout this season anyway. Until the last 2 weeks we weren't playing a defensive forward - Fantasia, Tippa and Green was our preferred trio when fit and available. Clarke is an extra inside mid that we included last week but most weeks we haven't played that extra inside mid as alluded to by the fact that Myers and Langford have never played together.
 

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Vander18

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The problem is McGrath isn't structurally a swap for Clarke, or Baguley.

If you're keeping Clarke in you believe its because he showed enough and his ability to create space for fellow midfielders will provide more than Myers can.
If you're keeping Baguley its because you believe his work as a defensive forward should keep Green out.

I think if you want to bring in McGrath you have to take out Dea.
Think McGrath could play small forward very effectively - no evidence of this, just my sense of it.
 

TDay

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Keep him in. It is time for the selectors to put a higher value on ethos. Clarke had 5 tackles, has the right attitude and his numbers will only go up as his team mates get used to him. Plus he was playing inside against some of the best midfielders in the game. He gets at leadt a block of 3 games.

Id say Laverde (had his block of games) and Dea will be on the block for McGrath to come in. And that should be the only change
 

BrunoV

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I just finished the replay and you people have, dead-set, made this blocking thing up.

Let's give him 4 'push offs' where he pushed against an opponent. They were all done with an aim to winning possession.

I give him 3 tackles and 2 further tackles where he didn't instigate the tackle.

I could see two bumps/blocks.
 

Duckworth

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I just finished the replay and you people have, dead-set, made this blocking thing up.

Let's give him 4 'push offs' where he pushed against an opponent. They were all done with an aim to winning possession.

I give him 3 tackles and 2 further tackles where he didn't instigate the tackle.

I could see two bumps/blocks.
Have a little patience.

It doesn't matter how many blocks he made. He will take time, and we have it. Let's not be too quick to worry ourselves with reconstructing our failed midfield from the previous 4 weeks.
 

Vander18

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I just finished the replay and you people have, dead-set, made this blocking thing up.

Let's give him 4 'push offs' where he pushed against an opponent. They were all done with an aim to winning possession.

I give him 3 tackles and 2 further tackles where he didn't instigate the tackle.

I could see two bumps/blocks.
Tend to agree - watched last night with same intent and I couldn’t see it. Doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, but I couldn’t see it.

Don’t think I’d drop him though - prefer to see him get at least one more week.
 
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McGrath and Hurley are coming in for sure.
That's without the looming threat of Green and Myers.

So.. Name the two who will be dropped.

Clarke & Laverde
Clarke & Langford
Clarke & Dea
Laverde & Dea
Langford & Dea

I vote Clarke and Dea.

Clarke - was not an auspicious debut for a guy who has been accumulating 30 + on the inside at VFL level.
He was okay and has a future.
I'd personally sooner have Langford inside at this stage and I just feel that Laverde is about to crack it open and have a blinder.

People say "What more is Clarke going to learn at VFL level?"
Valid question - but of secondary importance to the question "Who are the best 22 to get a win at AFL level this weekend?".

Not everyone has to be dropped for the sake of their own development. On a healthy list people sometimes get dropped simply because there is someone better available.
 

ant555

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I thought he would have done a bit more. Was reasonable as far as positioning goes. He pushes off his man in the middle which is what i like. Had no outside game like he did against Sandy last week. Was not terrible but Laverde , Langford and Stringer did more in the middle. I could not complain if he got a few more games but he would have to do more than he did on Saturday. Will face selection pressure I would think.
 

Mercurial89

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I just finished the replay and you people have, dead-set, made this blocking thing up.

Let's give him 4 'push offs' where he pushed against an opponent. They were all done with an aim to winning possession.

I give him 3 tackles and 2 further tackles where he didn't instigate the tackle.

I could see two bumps/blocks.
Couple of questions-

Do you think we are a realistic shot of having a good year and winning a final with how much of a hole we have ourselves in?

Would you agree that one of the big issues with where we are is that selection of senior players and players who are favoured is at the expense of players in the lower level regardless of form?

Do you think 8 weeks of solid to outstanding VFL form = a solitary debut game then back to work on his craft?
With the additionals being - we won, 1 player is worthy of an elevation (parish) and senior players are coming off injuries and we are travelling.


I think the basic argument by most here is that he didnt do anything "wrong" apart from being one of the lesser influential plauers on the ground.
We are/should be trying to build some standards that players can have a solid block of form and unless the team loses horribly or you are not playing your role that your prior form should earn you at least a back up game.

Conversely those coming off poor form, or injury ( we have both in mcgrath and parish and some with a mix in hurley) these players should have to put together some form in the lower level to then earn their best 22 slot.

I dont think anyone is arguing he was immune to being dropped just that when viewed through the above prism he and the rest of the guys on the weekend probably earnt a shot at an unchanged lineup.
 

BrunoV

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Couple of questions-

Do you think we are a realistic shot of having a good year and winning a final with how much of a hole we have ourselves in?

Would you agree that one of the big issues with where we are is that selection of senior players and players who are favoured is at the expense of players in the lower level regardless of form?

Do you think 8 weeks of solid to outstanding VFL form = a solitary debut game then back to work on his craft?
With the additionals being - we won, 1 player is worthy of an elevation (parish) and senior players are coming off injuries and we are travelling.


I think the basic argument by most here is that he didnt do anything "wrong" apart from being one of the lesser influential plauers on the ground.
We are/should be trying to build some standards that players can have a solid block of form and unless the team loses horribly or you are not playing your role that your prior form should earn you at least a back up game.

Conversely those coming off poor form, or injury ( we have both in mcgrath and parish and some with a mix in hurley) these players should have to put together some form in the lower level to then earn their best 22 slot.

I dont think anyone is arguing he was immune to being dropped just that when viewed through the above prism he and the rest of the guys on the weekend probably earnt a shot at an unchanged lineup.

Who knows about finals, that's certainly not my concern at this point. I'm much more interested in putting together a good mix of players.

Clarke got his reward for performing well, he's not the example to run with when it comes to selection integrity.

Langford is the main one. He's seemingly done everything he's been told to do for a long period of time now and then gets dropped for players who either have no more impact on the game or who have significant deficiencies in their games.

Clarke, on the other hand, has two or three major deficiencies which we're so much worse at AFL level. He's a smart kid and he will understand what his problems are. If his kicking falls apart in the VFL where he doesn't find outside ball why would we expect that AFL game time will help him?

It's very easy to go to Clarke and say 'boy, you know we love your inside game and we wanted to reward you for your VFL performances but now you know just how much you need to work on X, Y and Z so we want you to go back and keep working and we'll reward you more as the season goes on'.

He has no right to demand selection on the current state of his game and, while I'm only guessing, I have no doubt that he's aware of this reality and is comfortable enough (knowing that it's ultimately up to him to develop glaringly obvious deficiencies).

The trouble we're getting ourselves into with other players is the only thing we can really tell them is that 'seniority sucks' so we don't and we start sending mixed messages.

Guelfi is a new player and competent inside mid who is effective at AFL level. Mutch slotted into AFL footy seamlessly too, though whether he's a great fit for the side is debatable.

The most significant change we made was changing the hierarchy of inside midfielders to give more midfield game time to Langford and to fit Clarke into the side because he spent almost no time playing another role.

Clarke's time can be given to Laverde, who average as he was, was streets ahead of Clarke, Guelfi and even Redman who has been playing inside (which I assume would be reflected in training).

The development of the midfield is better served with time being given to players who are ready for it.
 
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