Prediction The Very early 2023 Ladder Predictions

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HBFlanker

Premiership Player
Jul 23, 2008
4,627
4,641
Melbourne
AFL Club
North Melbourne
As I said, we will see 😁

You have us losing to Port ? That’s interesting.

Yeah i think port improve massively. They actually have to as they have gone all in on this current group, through trading away a heap of picks for Rioli and JHF.

Ive got Collingwood outside the 8
 

demondavey

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 18, 2005
27,615
23,264
AFL Club
Melbourne
I think this is one of the better threads on the MB conducted in the right spirit. We all are self aware mushrooms.

It is pretty clear most of those that finished in the Top 8 will be highly competitive again, while those that finished outside are at different stages in their efforts to be a quality competitive team. Those at real risk of sliding are:

* the Dogs - Dunkley loss will hurt, while Lobb is a B grade forward. Their defence and forward line are both susso.

* the Tigers - I am not convinced Taranto and Hopper are the solution to the Tigers’ midfield deficiencies. Neither were first string mids in a team that struggled last year. Arguably we have seen their ceiling and it is not the Sistine Chapel, folks. Wonderful servants though each have been, quality contributions from Prestia, the skipper and big Jack cannot be expected to be at the same level as previous years. It is ridiculous to put it on one player but if Dusty returns to anything like his best over the season the Tigs will make the 8.

* the Pies - did wonderfully well in 2022 with some ageing top end talent and some terrific youngsters and of course their ability to win close ones was the stuff of legend. For me their Coach deserved every accolade he got. Titch and McStay are both excellent recruits targeting areas of weakness. Mihocek must be really delighted. That said they have a few injury prone players getting on in their footy lives and many youngsters finding their way. I reckon they will be in a battle for 6-8th with Port.

The Blues, Tigs and the Go Co will be fighting over 8th.

My big improvers from outside the 8 are:

* Port. They have recruited well and surely cannot endure such a poor start again. I reckon they should finish 4-6.

* Gold Coast. Contrary to most I think Dew is doing a pretty good job. King back will help as will natural improvement in a young and talented list that have now quite a bit of experience. I reckon they will be in the 7-10 range and should make the 8.

As for the others, here are some brief thoughts.

* With North importing some solid B graders, some decent drafting and acquiring a proven coach, they should not suffer so many terrible floggings. They will pick up a couple more wins, but still finish last. Their list is distorted from having imported a number of B graders on A grade salaries. It will take some years to fix.

* Hawthorn is in full rebuild mode. Their list is fine but they just need another 2-3 seasons to be competitive on a consistent basis and threaten the 8.

* West Coast had a shocker from injury and Covid. However its immediate future looks bleak. They are overdue a dramatic rebuild. Signing NicNat for two years remains a puzzling decision. Yes my mob re-signed Buddy but it was for one year and he still produced some quality footy in 2022. By contrast Naitanui struggles to play and seemed far too heavy for the joint issues he unhappily suffers from. I see negligible scope for improvement.

* Adelaide has put games into youngsters and has a pretty decent Coach. In Dawson they possess the best kick in the Comp and old fashioned swingman in the Comp. They should experience steady improvement.

* Essendon had a difficult 2022 but has picked up a proven Coach. The list has lots of talent but can Scott persuade notorious one way merchants in Merrett, Parish, Shiel and Stringer to run both ways. If yes they should win a couple more games.

* Lyon has inherited a Saints list dominated by 24yo+ B graders and few out and out quality players. I expect the Saints will fall further from last year.

* While GWS are rebuilding, I think it will be a swift one. Their personnel losses at the draft table are less than most have assessed. They are a sneaky chance to win a few more games and be competitive.

My locked in certainties for the 8 are Geelong, Brisbane, Melbourne, Freo, Bloods. I expect the Pies to make it along with Port and the GoCo.

Finally a very few words on the Blues. Imo they possess the most distorted list in the Comp. In most Rounds they will select around 10 very high quality players but then the rest are Role players at best and few are reliable at that. Like the Dons, their defensive skills are susso, even among some of their elite players. Voss is a terrific Coach but has a lot to do to shape the list. Could make the 8 but I reckon their range is 10-12 wins.

Woops and before I am criticised, I expect the Bloods to slide from their unexpected high finish in 2022 and flogging in the GF. I reckon they will slide to 5-7. They have a quality group of young players who have played a relatively high number of games. The Club has a lot of depth. Weaknesses are rucks and the absence of a big KPD. The mids rely a lot on young players. T McCartin and Mills are easily the most important players to their structur.
I think Lyon will squeeze every ounce of ability, effort and defensiveness out of the list he has. He has no choice and they have no choice if they want to be competitive. I’d be expecting them to grind it out with a lot of teams and beating lesser sides, but getting beaten by a good 30-40 against the better ones.

Losing King will really hurt, but I think whilst there may be improvements, I can’t see them getting too far ahead in terms of finals because the list just isn’t good. A fair few blokes will be in for a shock re work rate though, as I think Lyon won’t be picking them based on their name.
 

aussierulesrules

Hall of Famer
Jan 7, 2011
33,635
67,646
Heaven. I mean Victoria.
AFL Club
St Kilda
I think Lyon will squeeze every ounce of ability, effort and defensiveness out of the list he has. He has no choice and they have no choice if they want to be competitive. I’d be expecting them to grind it out with a lot of teams and beating lesser sides, but getting beaten by a good 30-40 against the better ones.

Losing King will really hurt, but I think whilst there may be improvements, I can’t see them getting too far ahead in terms of finals because the list just isn’t good. A fair few blokes will be in for a shock re work rate though, as I think Lyon won’t be picking them based on their name.
Pretty much everyone who’s been down to training this preseason on here has commented on the vast difference in professionalism and organisation of the sessions, compared to what they’ve witnessed recent years.

Ben Dixon for one was pretty scathing of what he witnessed when he was working with our group on goalkicking a couple of years ago.

Reckons the levels of professionalism at the club were way below what he was used to at Hawthorn, so you’d imagine with Ross raising the standards again, it will augur well for what we’re able to produce on the field.

And if we were able to finish just 1 win outside the 8 last year, off the hardest draw of any team (every 2nd week on average we played a team who made the 8- Melbourne apparently the only other team to play double-figure games against eventual finalists), it’s not exactly hard to see how we could make finals this year, if enough goes right.

There’s virtually no-one on our list who’s best is certain to be behind them, whereas there’s a huge chunk of the list who could very easily be better this year than last, which usually makes a team more likely to improve, than decline.

We do have a concerning number of injuries at the moment though, so that doesn’t help our cause.

Could very easily be 2-2 when Max returns though, so I think his injury is being significantly overstated. We’ve also won our last 3 that he’s missed.
 

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4tone

Club Legend
Jun 12, 2012
1,195
1,069
AFL Club
Collingwood
Ive got the pies going 0-4 to start the season.

Long way back from there. The round 2 clash with port will be massive if they lose round 1, as they will be outsiders in round 3 and 4 against Richmond and Brisbane respectively.
What if they win all 4
 

Milux

Norm Smith Medallist
Sep 29, 2013
8,242
11,947
Brisbane
AFL Club
Brisbane Lions
I know. Pretty sure you guys hitting FA hard for KPB types this year
Do you mean Key Forwards? As our back like seems ok. Hopefully get Marcus back next year. Few young blokes can play in that role too.

I'd like another Mid. This may be Zorkos last year. We may have Rich covered if he decides to retire too.
 

demondavey

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 18, 2005
27,615
23,264
AFL Club
Melbourne
Pretty much everyone who’s been down to training this preseason on here has commented on the vast difference in professionalism and organisation of the sessions, compared to what they’ve witnessed recent years.

Ben Dixon for one was pretty scathing of what he witnessed when he was working with our group on goalkicking a couple of years ago.

Reckons the levels of professionalism at the club were way below what he was used to at Hawthorn, so you’d imagine with Ross raising the standards again, it will augur well for what we’re able to produce on the field.

And if we were able to finish just 1 win outside the 8 last year, off the hardest draw of any team (every 2nd week on average we played a team who made the 8- Melbourne apparently the only other team to play double-figure games against eventual finalists), it’s not exactly hard to see how we could make finals this year, if enough goes right.

There’s virtually no-one on our list who’s best is certain to be behind them, whereas there’s a huge chunk of the list who could very easily be better this year than last, which usually makes a team more likely to improve, than decline.

We do have a concerning number of injuries at the moment though, so that doesn’t help our cause.

Could very easily be 2-2 when Max returns though, so I think his injury is being significantly overstated. We’ve also won our last 3 that he’s missed.
The boss has made an impression already. Take no prisoners approach from him is his best asset. Was literally a kick away from being a two time premiership coach.
 

JustaBattler

Everyone Looks Better In Blue
May 31, 2012
24,003
52,470
AFL Club
Carlton
I have 3 locks for finals in '23 - Brisbane, Geelong and Melbourne - because of home ground advantages in teh case of teh first two and too much talent in teh case of Melbourne.

Supporters of Richmond, Fremantle, Sydney and Doggies would be expecting to play finals because they did last year. Same can be said for Collingwood.

However, none of these sides have convincing superiority over each other nor can they speak with any real conviction that they are significantly better teams going forward than Clubs like Suns, GWS, Carlton, Saints or Port who missed finals.

I fully expect to see Essendon win more games- by not losing a few close ones , North to benefit from the proven assuredness of their new coach who will no doubt get the best out of what the players have to give ( much like Lyon at Saints). Nothing wrong with Adelaide's trajectory as evidenced in the second half of the season last year either. All these teams at the very least will make 'easy' wins less common for those teams that finished above them for one reason or another last year.
 

EconomicDecline

Team Captain
Oct 19, 2017
355
678
AFL Club
St Kilda
I think Lyon will squeeze every ounce of ability, effort and defensiveness out of the list he has. He has no choice and they have no choice if they want to be competitive. I’d be expecting them to grind it out with a lot of teams and beating lesser sides, but getting beaten by a good 30-40 against the better ones.

Losing King will really hurt, but I think whilst there may be improvements, I can’t see them getting too far ahead in terms of finals because the list just isn’t good. A fair few blokes will be in for a shock re work rate though, as I think Lyon won’t be picking them based on their name.
According to some of the Saints board who are down at the tracks regularly for training: "Lyon was pretty happy with the base, he put them on high octane training earlier than he expected he would."

The ones who have been "shock[ed] re work rate" are those that have come in from other clubs during the trade period ie. Cordy
 

EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
942
745
Melbourne
AFL Club
Fremantle
1. Brisbane - They are ready. Won't lose at home and have added tremendous talent to an already good team. Best team in it for mine
2. Melbourne - The addition of Hunter will be a masterstroke. They were cooked come finals last year. Wont make that mistake again
3. Richmond - Have loaded up for one last crack with Riewoldt, Cotchin, Martin. Have improved their list dramatically on last year
4. Geelong - No reason they cant win it again
5. Sydney - Best kids in the competition. Will be there abouts again
6. Carlton - Best spine in the competition. Have to play finals and probably win one
7. Fremantle - Kids getting better, winning a final last year helps.
8. Western Bulldogs - Very solid forward line and midfield. English to be AA ruck

9. Collingwood - Overachieved in 2022. If Darcy Cameron gets injured the slide will be even worse.
10. Port Adelaide - Just not enough for mine. Will improve over time with JHF, Rozee, Butters coming along but still holes in the back line everywhere.
11. Gold Coast - Should be aiming for higher than this but don't think they are better than any of the teams above them
12. West Coast - Old heads returning will help no end. Not enough kids showing talent to push them any higher though.
13. Adelaide - Will improve. Dangerous at home. Forward line looking solid now
14. Essendon - A nothing list. Neither coming or going. Some departures at seasons end too.
15. North Melbourne - Some green shoots will show this year - Improvement will be shown
16. GWS - A mile off it. Solid midfield but not much else
17. St.Kilda - Trouble early with injuries. Nowhere near enough avenues to goal. Need a rebuild under Ross
18. Hawthorn - They want to finish last
 

RobJD

All Australian
Oct 1, 2021
806
1,094
AFL Club
Collingwood
1. Brisbane - They are ready. Won't lose at home and have added tremendous talent to an already good team. Best team in it for mine
2. Melbourne - The addition of Hunter will be a masterstroke. They were cooked come finals last year. Wont make that mistake again
3. Richmond - Have loaded up for one last crack with Riewoldt, Cotchin, Martin. Have improved their list dramatically on last year
4. Geelong - No reason they cant win it again
5. Sydney - Best kids in the competition. Will be there abouts again
6. Carlton - Best spine in the competition. Have to play finals and probably win one
7. Fremantle - Kids getting better, winning a final last year helps.
8. Western Bulldogs - Very solid forward line and midfield. English to be AA ruck

9. Collingwood - Overachieved in 2022. If Darcy Cameron gets injured the slide will be even worse.
10. Port Adelaide - Just not enough for mine. Will improve over time with JHF, Rozee, Butters coming along but still holes in the back line everywhere.
11. Gold Coast - Should be aiming for higher than this but don't think they are better than any of the teams above them
12. West Coast - Old heads returning will help no end. Not enough kids showing talent to push them any higher though.
13. Adelaide - Will improve. Dangerous at home. Forward line looking solid now
14. Essendon - A nothing list. Neither coming or going. Some departures at seasons end too.
15. North Melbourne - Some green shoots will show this year - Improvement will be shown
16. GWS - A mile off it. Solid midfield but not much else
17. St.Kilda - Trouble early with injuries. Nowhere near enough avenues to goal. Need a rebuild under Ross
18. Hawthorn - They want to finish last
I like your assessment - seems balanced and considered. I'm not bullish about Geelong - not sure where their improvement comes from. Sides that are thumped in a GF often drop off the pace, so SYD could fall further. The Pies addressed all of last year's list deficiencies so they may surprise. Suspect that any side who loses a key player for an extended period will slide (not just the Pies).
 

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Lars27

Rookie
Jun 6, 2016
37
14
AFL Club
Essendon
1. Brisbane - They are ready. Won't lose at home and have added tremendous talent to an already good team. Best team in it for mine
2. Melbourne - The addition of Hunter will be a masterstroke. They were cooked come finals last year. Wont make that mistake again
3. Richmond - Have loaded up for one last crack with Riewoldt, Cotchin, Martin. Have improved their list dramatically on last year
4. Geelong - No reason they cant win it again
5. Sydney - Best kids in the competition. Will be there abouts again
6. Carlton - Best spine in the competition. Have to play finals and probably win one
7. Fremantle - Kids getting better, winning a final last year helps.
8. Western Bulldogs - Very solid forward line and midfield. English to be AA ruck

9. Collingwood - Overachieved in 2022. If Darcy Cameron gets injured the slide will be even worse.
10. Port Adelaide - Just not enough for mine. Will improve over time with JHF, Rozee, Butters coming along but still holes in the back line everywhere.
11. Gold Coast - Should be aiming for higher than this but don't think they are better than any of the teams above them
12. West Coast - Old heads returning will help no end. Not enough kids showing talent to push them any higher though.
13. Adelaide - Will improve. Dangerous at home. Forward line looking solid now
14. Essendon - A nothing list. Neither coming or going. Some departures at seasons end too.
15. North Melbourne - Some green shoots will show this year - Improvement will be shown
16. GWS - A mile off it. Solid midfield but not much else
17. St.Kilda - Trouble early with injuries. Nowhere near enough avenues to goal. Need a rebuild under Ross
18. Hawthorn - They want to finish last

Ridiculous assessment of Essendon imo. Plenty of young talent and nobody of significance retiring in the near future, besides Tippa, who didn't play a game in 2022 anyways. One of the youngest and least experienced teams with lots of upside.
 

EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
942
745
Melbourne
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Fremantle
I like your assessment - seems balanced and considered. I'm not bullish about Geelong - not sure where their improvement comes from. Sides that are thumped in a GF often drop off the pace, so SYD could fall further. The Pies addressed all of last year's list deficiencies so they may surprise. Suspect that any side who loses a key player for an extended period will slide (not just the Pies).

Geelong dont need to improve. They just won the grand final by 15 goals.

If they maintain that level, or even just drop off slightly, they will still be top 4.

They were a fair way in front of everyone last year.
 

EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
942
745
Melbourne
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Fremantle
Ridiculous assessment of Essendon imo. Plenty of young talent and nobody of significance retiring in the near future, besides Tippa, who didn't play a game in 2022 anyways. One of the youngest and least experienced teams with lots of upside.

More referring to Parish and Redman potentially leaving. I honestly think they both leave.

When i say a nothing list i mean they aren't challenging, contending or bottoming out with this list. Lots of kids with big reputations but next to no runs on the board i.e Cox, Caldwell, Baldwin, Jones
 

RobJD

All Australian
Oct 1, 2021
806
1,094
AFL Club
Collingwood
Geelong dont need to improve. They just won the grand final by 15 goals.

If they maintain that level, or even just drop off slightly, they will still be top 4.

They were a fair way in front of everyone last year.
Just 6 points in front of the Pies in the Semi - and the Pies have filled their most glaring weaknesses.
 

RobJD

All Australian
Oct 1, 2021
806
1,094
AFL Club
Collingwood
What have they filled?
Inside Mid (we got smashed in the contest last year): recruit Tom Mitchell
Key Forward (Mihochek had to do it all last year and for some of the time on one leg): recruit Dan McStay
Full Back (lost our three key backs last year - through either retirement or injury. Played Howe/Murphy out of position and got towelled by sides with two key forwards): recruit Billy Frampton
 

Coolangatta

Premiership Player
Oct 27, 2007
4,909
4,087
Western Australia
AFL Club
Brisbane Lions
I wouldn't have a clue.

Doesn't look like Adelaide, Essendon, GWS, Hawthorn, North, St Kilda or West Coast have the cattle to make finals, yet one or more of them probably will.

Throw a blanket over the other 11 teams. A Sydney fall due to a large GF loss wouldn't surprise me, but they are young and talented.

Brissy are probably being overrated a bit, still not sold on them cause of Fagan, though due to the Gabba I think we still make top 4. Tigers probably getting overrated due to history, too. And I don't think the Dogs are gonna be all that chop because of midfield losses, an average defence and a forward line that I don't see much improvement on.

I'm pretty sure Geelong, Melbourne, and Brissy will finish top 4, and maybe one of Sydney and Port if they can turn their home grounds into fortresses again. Though you could say the same thing about Freo.

I really rate McRae and the mentality he's got for the Pies team so it wouldn't shock me to see them make the top four.

Probably something like:

1. Dees
2. Cats
3. Lions
4. One of Swans/Pies/Power/Freo
5. ^^
6. ^^
7. ^^
8. Blues

Still not convinced about Carlton, mainly that there's something wrong with their injury and fitness management but who knows they might fix it.

P.S. Forgot about the Suns. Brutal draw, 13 games on the road, see them just missing again sadly but hope King makes a big difference.
 

Lars27

Rookie
Jun 6, 2016
37
14
AFL Club
Essendon
More referring to Parish and Redman potentially leaving. I honestly think they both leave.

When i say a nothing list i mean they aren't challenging, contending or bottoming out with this list. Lots of kids with big reputations but next to no runs on the board i.e Cox, Caldwell, Baldwin, Jones

I wouldn't be surprised if Parish left simply because our midfield already has too many similar players (we would get decent compensation too), but personally I have no reason to think that Redman is leaving other than a few dubious bigfooty rumours. He looks really invested in the club to me.
I don't think bottoming out is the best/only way to build a list myself. It certainly helps to get some top talent in, but not the only way. We got three top 10 picks in 2020, and a Pick 4 last year, so that is a decent start in terms of high draft picks. We could easily finish bottom 4 next season too and get another good pick.

You say we have lots of kids with potential and no runs on the board, but that would be expected with players that have played between 4-34 games which is the range of those players you listed. I rate Caldwell and he had a pretty good year for a part time mid.
Hobbs played 17 games in his first year and looks promising at this early stage. Cox looked great for a skinny 200cm player in his first year and played 20 games, but has had a run of injuries subsequently. Nik Martin played 21 games in his first season (without a full pre-season) and finished 8th in our best and fairest. Perkins has shown a fair bit and he's played less than 40 games and not much midfield time yet. D'Ambrossio showed a bit in his first year too.
Compare that to a team like North that has bottomed out: they have LDU as a potential gun, but he is further ahead than our youth as he is 23 and has played 70 games. Then you have a lot of players with potential just like Essendon. Players like Scott, Phillips, Powell, Perez, Comben, Curtis, Coleman-Jones, Goater etc. haven't exactly set the world on fire. Thomas is another one that has good potential, but some issues as well.

I think you are underrating our potential/upside.
 

EBERT THE KING

All Australian
Aug 30, 2006
942
745
Melbourne
AFL Club
Fremantle
I wouldn't be surprised if Parish left simply because our midfield already has too many similar players (we would get decent compensation too), but personally I have no reason to think that Redman is leaving other than a few dubious bigfooty rumours. He looks really invested in the club to me.
I don't think bottoming out is the best/only way to build a list myself. It certainly helps to get some top talent in, but not the only way. We got three top 10 picks in 2020, and a Pick 4 last year, so that is a decent start in terms of high draft picks. We could easily finish bottom 4 next season too and get another good pick.

You say we have lots of kids with potential and no runs on the board, but that would be expected with players that have played between 4-34 games which is the range of those players you listed. I rate Caldwell and he had a pretty good year for a part time mid.
Hobbs played 17 games in his first year and looks promising at this early stage. Cox looked great for a skinny 200cm player in his first year and played 20 games, but has had a run of injuries subsequently. Nik Martin played 21 games in his first season (without a full pre-season) and finished 8th in our best and fairest. Perkins has shown a fair bit and he's played less than 40 games and not much midfield time yet. D'Ambrossio showed a bit in his first year too.
Compare that to a team like North that has bottomed out: they have LDU as a potential gun, but he is further ahead than our youth as he is 23 and has played 70 games. Then you have a lot of players with potential just like Essendon. Players like Scott, Phillips, Powell, Perez, Comben, Curtis, Coleman-Jones, Goater etc. haven't exactly set the world on fire. Thomas is another one that has good potential, but some issues as well.

I think you are underrating our potential/upside.

Maybe so but they arent doing anything of note this season.
 

Robroy22

Norm Smith Medallist
Oct 24, 2012
8,324
14,648
Jindabyne
AFL Club
Collingwood
Other Teams
Central Broken Hill (Magpies)
Geelong will be top 4 again...based on home games and list as it stands.
Melbourne should also be top 4 with their inclusions over the off season.
Brisbane should win enough home games to make top 4 again having bolstered their midfield
The final top 4 spot will probably come from Richmond (3 gun mids in) and the 2 big forwards fit, the Western Bulldogs (Great looking list) and Port Adelaide (have improved their list and if they play to their strengths....speed and attacking...they should be there)

The other 2 finals spots will be fought out between Freo (very well coached and organised), Sydney (banking on youth but no real improvements obvious), Carlton (has a list but do they have the heart?) and Collingwood (they couldn't do it again Could They??)

We shall have to wait and see.
 

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