Analysis Premiership credentials

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TBOW

Club Legend
Aug 9, 2012
2,771
3,052
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Western Bulldogs
Wasn't really sure where else to post this - but for any followers of Squiggle (a data based football prediction algorithm) we have shot into premiership favoritism.
We are also significant favorites to finish on top of the ladder.

https://live.squiggle.com.au/#

Obviously there can be a lot of flaws in this sort of predictive modelling, however squiggle has proven itself to be fairly reliable over the years.
Whether we can live up to the Squiggles lofty endorsement is yet to be seen.
 

Pugz89

Premium Platinum
Jun 29, 2015
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I think we need another victory against a contender before I’d be going that far, but we’ve exceeded a lot of expectations so far.
IF
we can continue our impressive form of the first three rounds

THEN
The minimum expectation would be a 9-2 record going into a stretch of games which includes Freo away, Cats, and Eagles away. From there, top two should be the minimum we settle for.

Reckon Port (at AO) and to a lesser extent Richmond are the main two threats in our first 10 rounds if we continue to play to our current standard. The main question mark is if we can maintain it, but the North game has given me confidence that we have perhaps moved on from the recent years when we lowered our colours and standard to teams lower than us on the ladder.
 

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Boristown

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May 24, 2015
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North Melbourne
Not only will we go through this year undefeated, we won't lose another game until early 2023. And that will only be because of the new "stop the Bulldogs" rule introduced by Steve Hocking as we become the Walter Lindrum of the AFL.
Didn't they do that after 2016 with 'third man up' being abolished?
 

Dogsman16

Brownlow Medallist
Oct 19, 2012
11,006
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I always love comparing the current team to that 2016 finals unit and seeing the differences as well as which aspects of the team have got stronger and which ones have got weaker.

To me the 3 definite improvements from that side are the KPF options (not only quality but also depth) the midfield (as good as it was then this one is even better) and the ruck combination.

2016 KPFs
Cordy & Stringer
vs
2020 KPFs
Naughton & Bruce

Clear upgrade in mind. Naughton is a considerably better KPF in almost every single facet of the game in comparison to Cordy (apart from defensive pressure which is around similar). 2021 Bruce also looks to be a substantially better player than 2020 Bruce and 2016 Stringer was in a very lean patch of form near and during those final series. Throw in depth like JUH and Schache in comparison to the non-existent depth we had in 2016 (Redpath unfortunately always injured) and 2021 is sooooo much better.

2016 Midfield
Bontempelli, Macrae, Dahlhaus, Liberatore, Hunter + pinch hitters such as Dunkley, McLean, Picken, Smith etc.
vs
2020 Midfield
Bontempelli, Macrae, Treloar, Liberatore, Dunkley, Smith, Hunter, Lipinski

2020 is better. Bont, Macrae are better players than 2016 versions. Dunkley substantially better than 2016 version. Hunter and Liberatore probably around the same level and Treloar at his best is an elite mid which Dahlhaus was a little bit off during those times. Throw in Smith as an A-grade level wingman and 2020 is about as good as it gets.

2016 rucks
Roughhead + Boyd
vs
2020 rucks
Martin + English

I'd give our current ruck stocks a slight edge. Probably due to English having more runs on the board than Boyd and Martin being the more seasoned ruck option. Boyd obviously starred in that GF but English probably the more consistent performer.

I think the major area where we don't stack up well in comparison is the small forward grouping. The 2016 small forwards of Dickson, Picken and Smith (and the form they were in) is an area where we don't have the cattle yet. VDM can fill one of those slots but I'd say we need to find another solid contributor regarding closing speed, pressure and forward nous. Also one of Lipinski/Hunter doesn't really get much midfield time so they more play the role of a half forward rather than pure wing. Neither are at that level in terms of a forward. Where/how does Wallis fit into this. Is his role completely redundant? I personally think it is.

Our small-medium defender probably slightly below our 2016 grouping. Moz, Wood, and Boyd were stars and JJ was a much better player then than now. Throw in Biggs and that grouping was high level. Our current crop is still very good though. Williams, Daniel, Crozier, Wood, Duryea and Dale gives us great depth, quality and coverage. Where/does JJ fit in with everyone available?

KPD the most interesting comparison. Keath probably the most assured KPD we have had in the past 5 years but the 2nd option is a major question mark. However 2016 KPD's in Hamling and Roberts didn't really answer the question until we needed them to in the finals. Gardiner/Young/Cordy could be the difference if one of them goes to the next level.

But really the two question marks are. Can we find the pressure from our small forward grouping to be a premiership level? And who can fill the position of secondary KPD to a good level? I think every other aspect of our team is good enough to win a premiership currently especially with our midfield.
 

TBOW

Club Legend
Aug 9, 2012
2,771
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For what it is worth the O.P. is not an opinion piece and I definitely don't think that we are the current favourites for the flag.

I was just surprised to see that this particular data set had us favourite for the flag and thought I would share that here.
Having kept track of the Squiggle for several years I'm not sure that we have ever been in that position before.
 

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perro_loco

Club Legend
Apr 10, 2016
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I’d believe that if perro_loco said it
perro_loco will be doing some macumba once the travel restrictions are lowered. in the meantime, I want all people to kill a rooster in their backyard and drink some peyote tea. dead red rooster with chips is an acceptable option. peyote tea is also good with grappa of course.
 

perro_loco

Club Legend
Apr 10, 2016
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I always love comparing the current team to that 2016 finals unit and seeing the differences as well as which aspects of the team have got stronger and which ones have got weaker.

To me the 3 definite improvements from that side are the KPF options (not only quality but also depth) the midfield (as good as it was then this one is even better) and the ruck combination.

2016 KPFs
Cordy & Stringer
vs
2020 KPFs
Naughton & Bruce

Clear upgrade in mind. Naughton is a considerably better KPF in almost every single facet of the game in comparison to Cordy (apart from defensive pressure which is around similar). 2021 Bruce also looks to be a substantially better player than 2020 Bruce and 2016 Stringer was in a very lean patch of form near and during those final series. Throw in depth like JUH and Schache in comparison to the non-existent depth we had in 2016 (Redpath unfortunately always injured) and 2021 is sooooo much better.

2016 Midfield
Bontempelli, Macrae, Dahlhaus, Liberatore, Hunter + pinch hitters such as Dunkley, McLean, Picken, Smith etc.
vs
2020 Midfield
Bontempelli, Macrae, Treloar, Liberatore, Dunkley, Smith, Hunter, Lipinski

2020 is better. Bont, Macrae are better players than 2016 versions. Dunkley substantially better than 2016 version. Hunter and Liberatore probably around the same level and Treloar at his best is an elite mid which Dahlhaus was a little bit off during those times. Throw in Smith as an A-grade level wingman and 2020 is about as good as it gets.

2016 rucks
Roughhead + Boyd
vs
2020 rucks
Martin + English

I'd give our current ruck stocks a slight edge. Probably due to English having more runs on the board than Boyd and Martin being the more seasoned ruck option. Boyd obviously starred in that GF but English probably the more consistent performer.

I think the major area where we don't stack up well in comparison is the small forward grouping. The 2016 small forwards of Dickson, Picken and Smith (and the form they were in) is an area where we don't have the cattle yet. VDM can fill one of those slots but I'd say we need to find another solid contributor regarding closing speed, pressure and forward nous. Also one of Lipinski/Hunter doesn't really get much midfield time so they more play the role of a half forward rather than pure wing. Neither are at that level in terms of a forward. Where/how does Wallis fit into this. Is his role completely redundant? I personally think it is.

Our small-medium defender probably slightly below our 2016 grouping. Moz, Wood, and Boyd were stars and JJ was a much better player then than now. Throw in Biggs and that grouping was high level. Our current crop is still very good though. Williams, Daniel, Crozier, Wood, Duryea and Dale gives us great depth, quality and coverage. Where/does JJ fit in with everyone available?

KPD the most interesting comparison. Keath probably the most assured KPD we have had in the past 5 years but the 2nd option is a major question mark. However 2016 KPD's in Hamling and Roberts didn't really answer the question until we needed them to in the finals. Gardiner/Young/Cordy could be the difference if one of them goes to the next level.

But really the two question marks are. Can we find the pressure from our small forward grouping to be a premiership level? And who can fill the position of secondary KPD to a good level? I think every other aspect of our team is good enough to win a premiership currently especially with our midfield.
This is a really good analysis. Thanks. I would only say that each time Wallis was dropped, he came back into the side and kind of reinvented himself to play an important role in each of the past two or three seasons. The other player, who I think can do a lot of good, if he gets a chance is Jong. He is more mature and is quite a tough cookie. He's likely to come in for one of Scott or McNeill. He needs a bit of luck. this is probably his only chance this year.
 

ScragCity

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 7, 2015
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I'll start to think of us as a serious flag threat if and when we beat two of Richmond, Port and Geelong. Our game against Sydney might be telling too if they are the real deal. Even if we get to 6-0, the context of those six wins will matter. Didn't Norf win their first 9 in 2016 and then go on to miss finals?
 

perro_loco

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Apr 10, 2016
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I'll start to think of us as a serious flag threat if and when we beat two of Richmond, Port and Geelong. Our game against Sydney might be telling too if they are the real deal. Even if we get to 6-0, the context of those six wins will matter. Didn't Norf win their first 9 in 2016 and then go on to miss finals?
Geelong are crap. The other two sides are very good. You forgot WC. They are the real deal IMO.
 

ScragCity

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 7, 2015
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Geelong are crap. The other two sides are very good. You forgot WC. They are the real deal IMO.
Funny how such a crap side was playing in a grand final 4 games ago. They seem to have a couple of decent players. Who were the two most recent Coleman medallists?

West Coast will be a good side this year. Probably top four.
 

X_box_X

King of September
Mar 15, 2001
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I'll start to think of us as a serious flag threat if and when we beat two of Richmond, Port and Geelong. Our game against Sydney might be telling too if they are the real deal. Even if we get to 6-0, the context of those six wins will matter. Didn't Norf win their first 9 in 2016 and then go on to miss finals?
I'd be ecstatic if we beat two of those three. Absolutely ecstatic. We haven't beaten Geelong at Hill Billy Oval since 2003, a season in which we only won 3.5 games.

I'm not too fussed about Sydney. I expect them to fall away in the second half of the season. They're a young side who surely can't maintain their current form. We should be beating them at Marvel Stadium.
 

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