- Mar 26, 2008
- AFL Club
- Other Teams
- Justice League
When you're gradually trading off quality older players like we have most seasons and replacing them with young players who are three to five seasons away you won't see gradual improvement. When the few older players you have are declining because they are a good number of years away from their prime age you won't see gradual improvement, if anything we will go the other way for a while and we have.I agree with most of that except that we shouldn’t expect to see steady improvement. That’s the difference between Melbourne’s failed rebuild and their successful one. They just presumed all their talented kids would come on and they would explode up the ladder. I think SOS and crew see it that way too hence why we went all out for Shiel.
Unless we see a huge turnaround in form this season my money would be on us going all out again trying to attract a big name to start to drive improvement in our group.
I don’t think that has anything to do with a lack of patience but It could just be a better way to develop players.
Bryce Gibbs goes out. Paddy Dow and Lochie O'Brien come in. Both those boys are 4 or 5 years away before they make up for that loss. Not saying it was a bad move, it was a great move for our future but there's bucket loads of examples of this and this is why you don't see gradual improvement.
This is the first season where the draftees from the start of the rebuild have matured enough to be able to play good footy at AFL level and they have. Weitering was criticised heavily last year and this year we are praising the footy he is playing. McKay cracked a game at the end of last year and this year he's marking everything. Cuningham has been a maligned player for most of his career, at the moment we can't wait to see him back in the side. Next year we have SPS, Fisher, Polson, Williamson and Kerr to look forward to hitting maturity.
So really we are only just coming into a period where we should begin to see the first signs of improvement and IMO we have but they are very small.
The gradual improvement I expect to see is that last season we lost by an average of nearly 50 points. I expect we can halve that or thereabouts. Winning two games, well I would like to think we can win 4. Perhaps we can double this every season for the next three seasons. That would see us get to a top side within 3 years.
A team like us, not much will happen for years then when we start to improve it will happen rapidly over two or three year period I believe.
We aren't comparable with Melbourne, just as how we aren't comparable to our last rebuild. Different approach, different people.
I think we're about the stage where we can go all out for a big name. I was happy for us to miss Shiel and instead get good numbers of youth like Setterfield, Walsh, Stocker etc.
I think our players are developing quite well. It's hard to see a player who has not improved. Charlie Curnow is the only player not to improve IMO and that's a form thing which was interrupted by injury.
I think a lot of us expected improving meant winning games and it might, but considering how far back and where we are at in a rebuild which will take 7 years and where most of our players are at in their careers it's going to take a while yet.
The media are going after us pretty hard right now. All I can say to them is (Where's the middle finger emoji?).
5 years down the bottom. Accumulate. Develop. Bang.