- Jan 22, 2015
- AFL Club
- Other Teams
- Blackburn United EPL ... sorta
Can't believe it was ever called a 66 game rebuild. Does the rebuild end when we get all the players we want on our list or does it end when those players mature and we start playing good football?
I would go with the latter.
Crunch the numbers...
In 2015 a rebuild will mean we replace all but 3 players. Docherty, Cripps and Jones.
That means that the task is to find 37 players of elite to good quality.
Those players will need to be allowed to mature which happens at around 22-24 years of age.
No priority picks or special compensation. Starting from a low base so not too many players to trade out so we're limited and trading out is going to hurt. No expendable players to trade.
We get 3 good draft picks per season. Without being crafty and getting package deals with our trades that means it would take 12 years to find 37 good players. 6 years to find 22. Plus 3 or 4 years for them to mature.
With aggressive trading and drafting and big list turnovers we can half that to 6 or 7 years. So 3 or 4 to find 22. Plus their development time frame of 3-4 years.
Crunch the numbers people. We are actually on track. No one wants to hear about 6 or 7 year rebuilds but this is the reality of it.
We are 4 years into a 6 or 7 year rebuild where we will be spending most of it down the bottom.
That will only change when we have our full list of players and most of them are in that 22 or 23-28 year old age bracket.
2015 - Rebuild begins, Clean out and heavy recruitment - Focus on talls
2016 - clean out and heavy recruitment - Focus on mids and flankers
2017 - Clean out focus on mids and a Ruck/forward etc
2018 - Rock bottom and heavy recruitment. Average losing margin just under 50. Focus on mids, some slightly more mature players and plugging holes
2019 - development year. Average losing margin halved. Focus on forwards and elite mids will look for mature players and build depth. 2015 draftees start to hit maturity. Weitering, McKay, Curnow, Cuningham, Kennedy, Silvagni.
2020 - Competitive year - Focus on filling the gaps mature players early and raw talent late. 2016 draftees start to hit maturity. SPS, Setterfield, Fisher, Macreadie, Polson, Williamson, Kerr, .
2021 - Push for finals - Focus on an elite players and we fill holes with elite talent. 2017 Draftees begin to mature. Dow, O'Brien, DeKoning, Schumacher.
2022 - peak - Most players in the 23-28 year age gap. 2018 draftees hit maturity. Walsh, Stocker, O'Dwyer, Silvagni. Holes are filled, list is mature and very talented from years of patience and taking the long road. We present a very complete side with very few holes or weaknesses.
I would hope that this 66 game rebuild crap is something that has been spewed out to the fans and not something that is generally believed internally.
Crunch the numbers, we are all getting ahead of ourselves, this is a development year, if you don't like it then complain to the AFL that we haven't been resourced with enough draft picks. You put the priority pick into this equation and remove the two new teams and it takes a year or maybe even two off our rebuild time frame but this is the age we live in, this is Gil's AFL where it takes f***ing forever to build a team from scratch.
On a positive note, when we get to mid table things will mover very very fast. Our most important thing is player retention. I still believe if we keep our staff and our players and just keep adding to this then we will become a really really strong side when the rebuild is complete and the players mature.
I guess there would be a meltdown if the club came out and said it's going to be a 7 year rebuild and we will be down the bottom for most of it. In one way it would have been good to stick it to the AFL and their system but in another way it would have been disastrous for attendances, fan following, membership, recruitment and player retention.
This is not the first 7 year rebuild. Richmond did one. The big difference is where we are coming from is rock bottom and other teams usually start it from around mid table. Plus there are priority picks etc involved in other clubs rebuilds.
It's a harsh reality for us to get our heads around but this is the reality. None of us want to hear we have a couple more years to wait. We all want things to come on quicker but the numbers don't lie.
For what it's worth I wouldn't take too much notice of other developing clubs who are better than us or appear ahead of us like Brisbane or St Kilda. It's all about where we finish up and I am confident that when we finish we are a good chance to finish better. It's a long distance race and we have not sprinted at the start.
The other option would be to break the bank, chase stars and retain everyone who could play. That would be the easy quick fix solution. That doesn't fix the cultural problems and when we get to being a top side we would be limited, stagnate around the middle then bottom out anyway the same as the last rebuild.
SO it's not the only way but it's the best way.
One thing is for sure by going down the long road and being patient, when we mature and we arrive. We will have a really deep talent pool and a lot of quality through the 22 and we will have a side that not only plays finals but should be a realistic premiership chance.
the thing about rebuilding you only really start to rise when you get close to the peak period, it's not a steady increase or steady improvement, you more or less stay the same quality until the jobs is done and then the jump happens, especially when there are a lot of young players involved.
That is some damn quality posting right there kids!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.
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.