Opinion An idea for zones

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RobsJourney

Premiership Player
Oct 13, 2010
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Hey guys,

Still sinking in that we're triple Premiers :) Just watched the highlight packages for 2017, 2019 and 2020 all in a row. If you haven't done it I suggest you do - it helps 2020 feel more like a proper Grand Final, given it felt a bit odd being at night and not at the 'G. Amazing, love this team so much :)

Anyhow, if this needs to be merged into another thread, apologies, but otherwise keen on some thoughts on my idea.


First off, I HATE the idea of zones with a passion. Without going into too much of a rant, the end result of it will be 1) too hard to police 2) requiring players to do onfield maths during general play to make sure they are not breaching the zone rule and 3) a frustrating viewer experience; imagine a free kick where at first you don't even know what's happened, only to learn "ohh, we breached the zone rule." Just a poor viewer experience. The game already has too many free kicks born out of "not general play" (eg. 50 metres for breaching the silly protected area). Let the players play.


The Current VFL Trial Plan

At stoppages...
1) One player from each team in each goal square
2) Three players from each team in each 50 metre area (do they wait right on the 50 metre line? haha... imagine how silly that will look...), totalling 16 players forced into zones

Pros:
- Possible stretching of the ground, opening up play
- Possible return of gorilla forwards manning the goal squares

Cons:
- All of my rant above
- Might look silly watching 6 players standing on each 50 metre line waiting for stoppage to proceed, only to run out of the 50 again
- Poor viewer experience whenever breaches occur
- Super hard to police (who the hell will police this and from where? how do they stop play for breaches?!)
- Teams without a good gorilla forward are now potentially at a heavy disadvantage
- Takes away from the modern evolution of full forwards having to do all the team stuff etcetera
- Just overall unnatural and potentially stifling for the game



My Idea

At stoppages...
1) One player from each team in each goal square

Pros:
- Same as above with regards to possible stretching of ground, opening up play, return of gorilla forwards etc
- Easy to police, can even give the job to goal umpires

Cons:
- Teams without a good gorilla forward are now potentially at a heavy disadvantage
- Takes away from the modern evolution of full forwards having to do all the team stuff etcetera



You might be thinking at this point why bother, what's the difference with my idea? Here's why I like it compared to the current VFL plan...

Whilst my zone rule will only legally require 2 players in each goal square, teams will now be forced to put more players nearby, it just won't be legally enforced. Imagine we park Jack Riewoldt in the goal square and Harris Andrews is on him. The ball is deep in our defensive 50 for a throw in. Do we really think we'll have 100 metres of space between Jack and the next player? No way. Teams will now be forced to try and structure up a bit more to give protection and assistance to the guy forced to basically live in the goal square. This should in theory stretch the ground and open up space, but it will do so without having to force a silly number of players to remain in zones, making it much easier to police and much easier for players to figure out on the fly.




What do people think?
 

Tackle Bag

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No need for any of it.
Cut interchange down to 30 or so and sides will revert back to structured positioning.
Mids will rest deep forward like the old days and defenders will have to stand on them.

The bench was never intended to be used as it is currently. Take that away from coaches and we get a more open game
 

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YeOldTiger

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Jul 22, 2016
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My idea for zones is the same as my idea for new rules changes every year...strap SHocking into a straight jacket, gag him with a pair of Rodney Dangerwood's footy socks and kick his ass back down the road to Moggy Swamp where he belongs never to be seen or heard of again.

Leave our bloody game alone you tinkering dickheads.
 

RunningBounce

Premiership Player
Jun 12, 2013
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What do people think?
I think any single change to the rules should have to win a referendum of paid-up club members.

Who are these people who think the game is an eye sore? TV viewing up. Club memberships generally up (Covd aside). Sponsorship dollars up. Where is this problem that SHocking is being paid big bucks to solve?
 

tiggywigs

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Apr 10, 2008
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Hey guys,

Still sinking in that we're triple Premiers :) Just watched the highlight packages for 2017, 2019 and 2020 all in a row. If you haven't done it I suggest you do - it helps 2020 feel more like a proper Grand Final, given it felt a bit odd being at night and not at the 'G. Amazing, love this team so much :)

Anyhow, if this needs to be merged into another thread, apologies, but otherwise keen on some thoughts on my idea.


First off, I HATE the idea of zones with a passion. Without going into too much of a rant, the end result of it will be 1) too hard to police 2) requiring players to do onfield maths during general play to make sure they are not breaching the zone rule and 3) a frustrating viewer experience; imagine a free kick where at first you don't even know what's happened, only to learn "ohh, we breached the zone rule." Just a poor viewer experience. The game already has too many free kicks born out of "not general play" (eg. 50 metres for breaching the silly protected area). Let the players play.


The Current VFL Trial Plan

At stoppages...
1) One player from each team in each goal square
2) Three players from each team in each 50 metre area (do they wait right on the 50 metre line? haha... imagine how silly that will look...), totalling 16 players forced into zones

Pros:
- Possible stretching of the ground, opening up play
- Possible return of gorilla forwards manning the goal squares

Cons:
- All of my rant above
- Might look silly watching 6 players standing on each 50 metre line waiting for stoppage to proceed, only to run out of the 50 again
- Poor viewer experience whenever breaches occur
- Super hard to police (who the hell will police this and from where? how do they stop play for breaches?!)
- Teams without a good gorilla forward are now potentially at a heavy disadvantage
- Takes away from the modern evolution of full forwards having to do all the team stuff etcetera
- Just overall unnatural and potentially stifling for the game



My Idea

At stoppages...
1) One player from each team in each goal square

Pros:
- Same as above with regards to possible stretching of ground, opening up play, return of gorilla forwards etc
- Easy to police, can even give the job to goal umpires

Cons:
- Teams without a good gorilla forward are now potentially at a heavy disadvantage
- Takes away from the modern evolution of full forwards having to do all the team stuff etcetera



You might be thinking at this point why bother, what's the difference with my idea? Here's why I like it compared to the current VFL plan...

Whilst my zone rule will only legally require 2 players in each goal square, teams will now be forced to put more players nearby, it just won't be legally enforced. Imagine we park Jack Riewoldt in the goal square and Harris Andrews is on him. The ball is deep in our defensive 50 for a throw in. Do we really think we'll have 100 metres of space between Jack and the next player? No way. Teams will now be forced to try and structure up a bit more to give protection and assistance to the guy forced to basically live in the goal square. This should in theory stretch the ground and open up space, but it will do so without having to force a silly number of players to remain in zones, making it much easier to police and much easier for players to figure out on the fly.




What do people think?
If we have to have zones, the simplicity of your idea makes a lot of sense.
Probably should have one in the centre as well.
Let's just hope that 'Baldric' loses his job before they try the zoning stunt.
 

fargothegreat

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Oct 8, 2011
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fu** zones. KB and others are right. If they don't want high speed high pressure game styles, then they need players to be much more fatigued. Cutting the interchange down drastically is the best way to do this without ******* with the fabric of the game. If players are physically able to run up and down the ground, then the game will revert to a more positional style.

While we're winning every year or two I don't want them to change anything though.
 

Meteoric Rise

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If they introduce these zones, and I agree something is needed to spread players over the whole ground, then it can’t be boundary throw in then you can leisurely stroll into position. I say the ump blows the whistle signals the stoppage, you have probably 5 seconds flat to be in position or it is a free kick and 50. That way teams have to keep at least some structure across the ground at all times.
 

Bojangles17

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Because the teams can literally reset to own zone within seconds of the ball up or throw in I think it’s a futile attempt to clear congestion. IMHO 16 players would have an impact ,,,let’s face it if the game was invented today I can’t fathom you’d have 18 players ea it just screams congestion. The other move would be to tighten prior oppo , as in 3 steps , you’re gone , HTB interpretations are horse sh*t at afl level
 

RobsJourney

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Because the teams can literally reset to own zone within seconds of the ball up or throw in I think it’s a futile attempt to clear congestion. IMHO 16 players would have an impact ,,,let’s face it if the game was invented today I can’t fathom you’d have 18 players ea it just screams congestion. The other move would be to tighten prior oppo , as in 3 steps , you’re gone , HTB interpretations are horse sh*t at afl level
Nah htb needs to be what it used to be. Too many stops in play causes issues, the longer play flows the better the contest is and the more tired players will be, hopefully making them play closer to positions. Less free kicks is better imho.
 

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CaptchaProofBot

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what about a silly idea as preloading ? like you have a few beers at home first before starting the pubcrawl.

So all players inc. emergencies...MUST complete 10 (whatever) laps of the ground (wouldn't worry too much about different ground sizes), Telstra tracker surely can monitor this, then come game time, they're all semi-f***ed

No compicated change to current rules.
 

Phar Ace

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If they introduce these zones, and I agree something is needed to spread players over the whole ground, then it can’t be boundary throw in then you can leisurely stroll into position. I say the ump blows the whistle signals the stoppage, you have probably 5 seconds flat to be in position or it is a free kick and 50. That way teams have to keep at least some structure across the ground at all times.
The centre square was a very useful way to try and open up centre bounces and I don't think anyone would want that removed, so that is an example where temporary zoning works well.

I'd be really wary about removing the ability of any player to go anywhere. Having played at both ends of the ground myself for over 25 years, would hate to lose that opportunity. The only player I might concede would be one dedicated forward - he / she starts at every centre bounce in the goal square and cannot leave the 50 metre arc. I'm still in two minds whether a dedicated back must stay back as well - don't think I like it, needs to have the opportunity to leave the 50m arc to defend even if its just outside the arc - it would be a crazy situation for example if Balta ran to 60 from goal with no one around him, yet a dedicated back couldn't go to meet him and put pressure on.

I could live with an enlarged goal square, and at centre bounces there must be three from each team in that starting position (like we did when we had dedicated pockets). After the bounce no further restrictions. I think we all enjoyed some of the burst footy from the centre bounce. Instead of being able to create an early stoppage, with more numbers up at the ball, that takes a further four players potentially out of the contest for a few more seconds. That might lead to another goal per quarter and god knows we need a few more goals in our game.
 

RobsJourney

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The centre square was a very useful way to try and open up centre bounces and I don't think anyone would want that removed, so that is an example where temporary zoning works well.

I'd be really wary about removing the ability of any player to go anywhere. Having played at both ends of the ground myself for over 25 years, would hate to lose that opportunity. The only player I might concede would be one dedicated forward - he / she starts at every centre bounce in the goal square and cannot leave the 50 metre arc. I'm still in two minds whether a dedicated back must stay back as well - don't think I like it, needs to have the opportunity to leave the 50m arc to defend even if its just outside the arc - it would be a crazy situation for example if Balta ran to 60 from goal with no one around him, yet a dedicated back couldn't go to meet him and put pressure on.

I could live with an enlarged goal square, and at centre bounces there must be three from each team in that starting position (like we did when we had dedicated pockets). After the bounce no further restrictions. I think we all enjoyed some of the burst footy from the centre bounce. Instead of being able to create an early stoppage, with more numbers up at the ball, that takes a further four players potentially out of the contest for a few more seconds. That might lead to another goal per quarter and god knows we need a few more goals in our game.
I'm not keen on players being stuck in zones in general play at all, it would be horribly confusing and terrible viewing hey.

Per my original post, maybe the only way is indeed for one forward and one back being locked to the goal square for all stoppages. So any time there is a centre bounce, a bounce around the ground, or a boundary throw in, one player from each team will need to be in the goal squares. They will be reluctant to leave the goal square too much given the frequency of stoppages, and more players will need to station themselves nearby as backup.

It would still be super hard to police, but basically the goal umpire or nearby boundary umpires would need to watch it somehow. What's the penalty though..? A free kick where the ball currently is? If the ball is at the other end of the ground, how does the goal umpire get the message to where the ball is?

Either way I think the biggest issue will be how the hell to implement it at any other level of footy outside the AFL, without the benefit of extra eyes and TV cameras...

Zones really just cannot be the answer hey...
 

RobsJourney

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A possible simple solution...

What about if goals resulting from marks in the goal square were worth more points?

7 is not enough incentive.
9 is too much.
So how about 8 points?

Lynch marks in the goal square, set shot goal = 8.

A final score of 14.12.96 now might look something like 4.10.12.104 or 14(4).12.104

It means no crappy zones are needed and it might be enough incentive for teams to station more players near goals??
 

Not Important

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No need for any of it.
Cut interchange down to 30 or so and sides will revert back to structured positioning.
Mids will rest deep forward like the old days and defenders will have to stand on them.

The bench was never intended to be used as it is currently. Take that away from coaches and we get a more open game
that you, kevvy?
 

Phar Ace

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A possible simple solution...

What about if goals resulting from marks in the goal square were worth more points?

7 is not enough incentive.
9 is too much.
So how about 8 points?

Lynch marks in the goal square, set shot goal = 8.

A final score of 14.12.96 now might look something like 4.10.12.104 or 14(4).12.104

It means no crappy zones are needed and it might be enough incentive for teams to station more players near goals??
No, that completely changes it from history.
 

_RT_

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I would simply make it 3 pairs of players inside the 50 at all times. The only times this can be changed is when the players inside 50 are actively involved in leading to create a option or when you're a forward chasing an opponent out of defence as part of the play. Once the ball is in the opposition F50 then you need to return back to the opposite end of the ground.

Pros:
Stretches the ground
Return to 1-1 contests in the F50
Easily policed
Still allows the game to flow as you're not waiting for players to run back at stoppages.

Cons:
None that I can think of.

In addition to this the umpires must throw the ball up/throw it in as soon as they get to the stoppage/boundary throw in & if either team has a second player contest the ruck then it's an immediate free kick.

Pros:
Keeps the game moving
Stops the needless nomination of ruck given
Stops teams from getting extra numbers to the contest

Cons:
None that I can think of.
 

Tackle Bag

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I would simply make it 3 pairs of players inside the 50 at all times. The only times this can be changed is when the players inside 50 are actively involved in leading to create a option or when you're a forward chasing an opponent out of defence as part of the play. Once the ball is in the opposition F50 then you need to return back to the opposite end of the ground.

Pros:
Stretches the ground
Return to 1-1 contests in the F50
Easily policed
Still allows the game to flow as you're not waiting for players to run back at stoppages.

Cons:
None that I can think of.

In addition to this the umpires must throw the ball up/throw it in as soon as they get to the stoppage/boundary throw in & if either team has a second player contest the ruck then it's an immediate free kick.

Pros:
Keeps the game moving
Stops the needless nomination of ruck given
Stops teams from getting extra numbers to the contest

Cons:
None that I can think of.
On the first one, you're asking the umpires to make a call on whether a player is making a realistic lead or is realistically running out of the 50 to defend on an opposition player. There is a bit of grey area in that.

Your second suggestion is a no brainer and needs to be implemented asap. The current rule is joke.
 

_RT_

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On the first one, you're asking the umpires to make a call on whether a player is making a realistic lead or is realistically running out of the 50 to defend on an opposition player. There is a bit of grey area in that.

Your second suggestion is a no brainer and needs to be implemented asap. The current rule is joke.
Not that difficult to adjudicate, as the players are bringing the ball out D50 the forwards inside 50 at the other end are allowed to lead up as an option. When the opposition is bringing the ball out of D50 you're allowed to chase your opponent, remember there are 3 pairs inside 50 so the umpires will know who is playing on who so will know if a forward has left F50 and their opponent hasn't.
 

Tackle Bag

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Not that difficult to adjudicate, as the players are bringing the ball out D50 the forwards inside 50 at the other end are allowed to lead up as an option. When the opposition is bringing the ball out of D50 you're allowed to chase your opponent, remember there are 3 pairs inside 50 so the umpires will know who is playing on who so will know if a forward has left F50 and their opponent hasn't.
Your asking a lot of the umpire. How is the umpire supposed to know who is who’s direct opponent or if they are rotating up the ground with a teammate running back to replace him?

when does the umpire decide if a player is no longer directly involved in the contest and must return to his post inside 50?

This rule would require the umpire to have a feel for the game.
 

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