I did this last year for a bit of a diversion and was bored enough to do it again.
- Brisbane is either a very good side or flattered by their draw.
- Percentage is often said to be a strong indicator of a flag side, which suggests Richmond and Geelong will be hard to beat. But Geelong was the clear leader in this last year (136.5%, next best 109) and look how that went. Maybe a result of the Tigers' injury blip.
- On the other hand, Port's percentage is higher than only the Bulldogs'.
- Collingwood has a strong record, but a couple of costly losses have seen them get a Perth trip that might do them in.
- The Bulldogs are the clear outlier, a bit like Essendon last year (who were 2-7). Are they good enough to be there? 1-6 might suggest no, but 9-1 against non-finalists suggests yes. Another example of the value of consistently beating sides below you.
- Last year, Essendon was beaten easily in their EF, but they were eighth and playing a very good fifth side (West Coast) at an away ground. Bit harder to see that happening this week.
- The Dogs' record makes for the only difference between the 'eight' here and the real one, with them dropping out and GWS coming in.
- Only one side was winless against finalists last year (Melbourne at 0-11) - not sure how often there are two, but I'd guess not very.