Review Talls taken in the National Draft

Remove this Banner Ad

The Chad and I

Club Legend
Nov 13, 2018
1,077
3,311
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Makes you realise how lucky we were that the best forwards of their generation were available for us to pick when we were rebuilding.
The principle of building from the spine first sounds good, but if the players aren't there you will end up with Jack Watts and Beau Dowler, instead of Buddy and Roughy.
 

Log in to remove this ad.

Dewnior

Norm Smith Medallist
Dec 22, 2007
6,758
11,652
AFL Club
Hawthorn
It wasn't intentional. It was more a point that key forwards highly rated based on output in the U18 contests are rarely going to be the best forwards, for example Schache, Boyd, Patton who were selected early based on being 3 of the best goal scorers in the history of the U18 carnival despite being relatively one dimensional.
I think this argument applies for all positions, not just KPF. If you were to look at the 1st picked v best mid across all drafts you'll get a similar result.

But I'm sure Brishawk has the data to support / refute this.

Having said that, it will be interesting to see if there are any outliers
 

Brishawk

Brownlow Medallist
Jan 17, 2008
23,562
43,160
Brisvegas
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Makes you realise how lucky we were that the best forwards of their generation were available for us to pick when we were rebuilding.
The principle of building from the spine first sounds good, but if the players aren't there you will end up with Jack Watts and Beau Dowler, instead of Buddy and Roughy.
Yep good key forwards are hard enough to find but champions of the ilk of buddy and rough are very rare and we got two in one draft!
 

Blackhawk42

Norm Smith Medallist
Feb 5, 2018
7,367
15,068
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Chicago Blackhawks Melb Renegades
The crop this year don’t seem to be as good. So I’d agree. Although gibcus is highly rated.
Both that and the fact we are spoilt for height but low on quality mids with this draft being stacked with the latter.
 

rogiebear93

Norm Smith Medallist
May 17, 2017
7,907
19,838
AFL Club
Hawthorn
I think this argument applies for all positions, not just KPF. If you were to look at the 1st picked v best mid across all drafts you'll get a similar result.

But I'm sure Brishawk has the data to support / refute this.

Having said that, it will be interesting to see if there are any outliers
It applies to differing degrees.

Just taking Pick 1 as an example - between 2000 and 2015, a tall was taken #1 7 times, a mid 9 times. Just on basic analysis, you get an average of 256 games from a midfielder and 143 games from a tall. Of the talls, 6 of 7 have retired and of the midfielders 7 of 9 have retired.

I think with midfielders you've got more margin for error. They're going to be closer on quality, where with talls, if they're the wrong pick they tend to bomb quite badly.

From Pick 1, only one of the top 5 goal kickers at that Pick from 2000 is actually a forward.
 
Last edited:

Guardian Hawk

Premiership Player
Oct 16, 2003
3,702
5,425
Murrumbeena
AFL Club
Hawthorn
It applies to differing degrees.

Just taking Pick 1 as an example - between 2000 and 2015, a tall was taken #1 7 times, a mid 9 times. Just on basic analysis, you get an average of 256 games from a midfielder and 143 games from a tall. Of the talls, 6 of 7 have retired and of the midfielders 7 of 9 have retired.

I think with midfielders you've got more margin for error. They're going to be closer on quality, where with talls, if they're the wrong pick they tend to bomb quite badly.

From Pick 1, only one of the top 5 goal kickers at that Pick from 2000 is actually a forward.
Good analysis - I think in general this is true.

A quality key forward doesn't come around very often - when they do, they usually go early in the draft.

Problem is, you are much more likely to draft a bust with an early selected key forward than an early selected midfielder. IN other words, a quality key forward is going to make a bigger difference to your side (given their rarity) but in trying to draft one, you are more likely to pick a player that is a complete bust.

I think the reasoning for this is twofold: (1) It is very hard to be a dominant KPF in modern footy with defensive set ups, structures, etc. and (2) Key position players can stand out at junior level more for certain advantages (such as size and strength) that is no longer an advantage at AFL level

Given the makeup of this year's draft and the composition of our list, I think drafting a mid with our first is the right call (people will rush to say best available but I think that will be a mid anyway).

Looking at the midfielders taken in the top 5-6 picks in recent drafts:

2015:
Mills
Oliver
Parish


2016:
McGrath
Taranto
McCluggage

Ainsworth
Setterfield


2017:
Rayner
Brayshaw
Dow
LDU
Cerra

2018:
Walsh
Lukosius
Rozee


2019:
Rowell
Anderson
Ash

Stephens

As is evident, it's a pretty good strike rate to get a decent to excellent midfielder in those first 5-6 picks (and certainly better than the KP strike rate).

Even going back a bit further (I feel drafting keeps improving): 2014 - Petracca, Brayshaw, Pickett, DeGoey, 2013 - Kelly, Billings, Bont, Kolojazznee, etc, etc.
 

Brishawk

Brownlow Medallist
Jan 17, 2008
23,562
43,160
Brisvegas
AFL Club
Hawthorn
A few more charts:

This is a count of players taken by pick, limited to players who are 190cm or above. The darker shaded area are those players who have kicked 300 or more goals in their career. It is clear, it is hard to find players of that height later in the draft, that are worth selecting. But it looks like in some years, where the draft is potentially deeper, there are talls worth taking and occasionally you get a good kpf out of it. We need to keep this in mind when we look at other charts. That you can find a good KPF late in the draft does not mean you can expect to in an average year. That is probably why we see no kpf take between 51 and 70 who kicked 300 goals in their career, but you see a few taken after that. The quality of the talent pool in each draft is far from equal.
1631254136623.png



I have recast the above graph using pick range instead of pick. We can see the the top 5 and picks 11-20 have produced similar number of players to kick 300 goals but with close to half as many players taken of that height in 11-20 as there have been in the top 5 (on account of their being half the number of picks).
1631254913357.png

To draw out the inference more clearly, I have plotted the percentage of players taken of 190cm or taller to kick 300 goals. So it is really clear, the top 5 offer the best shot at landing one of these players even though you can find them later in the draft. The key observation here is that even in the top 5, you only land one 12 percent of the time. Note, I have no way to screen out defenders and ruckman so that could bias the results a little. It probably hurts picks 6-10 more than any other pick range.
1631255120794.png
 

Blackhawk42

Norm Smith Medallist
Feb 5, 2018
7,367
15,068
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Chicago Blackhawks Melb Renegades
Good analysis - I think in general this is true.

A quality key forward doesn't come around very often - when they do, they usually go early in the draft.

Problem is, you are much more likely to draft a bust with an early selected key forward than an early selected midfielder. IN other words, a quality key forward is going to make a bigger difference to your side (given their rarity) but in trying to draft one, you are more likely to pick a player that is a complete bust.

I think the reasoning for this is twofold: (1) It is very hard to be a dominant KPF in modern footy with defensive set ups, structures, etc. and (2) Key position players can stand out at junior level more for certain advantages (such as size and strength) that is no longer an advantage at AFL level

Given the makeup of this year's draft and the composition of our list, I think drafting a mid with our first is the right call (people will rush to say best available but I think that will be a mid anyway).

Looking at the midfielders taken in the top 5-6 picks in recent drafts:

2015:
Mills
Oliver
Parish


2016:
McGrath
Taranto
McCluggage

Ainsworth
Setterfield


2017:
Rayner
Brayshaw
Dow
LDU
Cerra

2018:
Walsh
Lukosius
Rozee


2019:
Rowell
Anderson
Ash

Stephens

As is evident, it's a pretty good strike rate to get a decent to excellent midfielder in those first 5-6 picks (and certainly better than the KP strike rate).

Even going back a bit further (I feel drafting keeps improving): 2014 - Petracca, Brayshaw, Pickett, DeGoey, 2013 - Kelly, Billings, Bont, Kolojazznee, etc, etc.
Don't mean to nitpick, but I'd be comfortable with LDU being green. If he played for Hawthorn we'd be quietly content with his output so far but very optimistic about how he is tracking.
 

rogiebear93

Norm Smith Medallist
May 17, 2017
7,907
19,838
AFL Club
Hawthorn
A few more charts:

This is a count of players taken by pick, limited to players who are 190cm or above. The darker shaded area are those players who have kicked 300 or more goals in their career. It is clear, it is hard to find players of that height later in the draft, that are worth selecting. But it looks like in some years, where the draft is potentially deeper, there are talls worth taking and occasionally you get a good kpf out of it. We need to keep this in mind when we look at other charts. That you can find a good KPF late in the draft does not mean you can expect to in an average year. That is probably why we see no kpf take between 51 and 70 who kicked 300 goals in their career, but you see a few taken after that. The quality of the talent pool in each draft is far from equal.
View attachment 1231404


I have recast the above graph using pick range instead of pick. We can see the the top 5 and picks 11-20 have produced similar number of players to kick 300 goals but with close to half as many players taken of that height in 11-20 as there have been in the top 5 (on account of their being half the number of picks).
View attachment 1231413
To draw out the inference more clearly, I have plotted the percentage of players taken of 190cm or taller to kick 300 goals. So it is really clear, the top 5 offer the best shot at landing one of these players even though you can find them later in the draft. The key observation here is that even in the top 5, you only land one 12 percent of the time. Note, I have no way to screen out defenders and ruckman so that could bias the results a little. It probably hurts picks 6-10 more than any other pick range.
View attachment 1231417
I think this demonstrates the larger point I was trying to make, I'd be hesitant to take a big forward in the top 3 on draft night because even though it is your best chance of getting a great forward it is by and large still a small chance. That's really it.
 

Brishawk

Brownlow Medallist
Jan 17, 2008
23,562
43,160
Brisvegas
AFL Club
Hawthorn
I think this demonstrates the larger point I was trying to make, I'd be hesitant to take a big forward in the top 3 on draft night because even though it is your best chance of getting a great forward it is by and large still a small chance. That's really it.
Compare that to the chance of landing a mid elsewhere though. Easy to get mids.
 

(Log in to remove this ad.)

Collins-Langford-Ayres

Hall of Famer
Mar 23, 2007
34,508
22,827
Where Premiership dreams are made...
AFL Club
Hawthorn
Other Teams
Man U, Canucks and 49ers
Is this isolated to KPF though? How often are the best players ever taken in the top 5
I think onballers are normally pretty aligned... Dusty, Rowell, Walsh, Cerra, McGrath/Tarranto/McCluggage, Oliver/Parish, Petracca, Kelly/Bont, etc all top 5. Less big misses for mids.
 

Remove this Banner Ad

Remove this Banner Ad