Opinion Who should be our 2nd key defender - Gardner, Cordy, Young or Wood

Who should be our 2nd key defender


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Unorth

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Apr 3, 2014
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It appears that Young wants to float around and play as an interceptor, without having much penchant for the bodying up aspect of the game. He has the height and athleticism to play the game style, but appears to be incapable of following the structure.

Cordy will try and try, but is undersized and limited athletically. You could say he's therefore playing out of position and should be a third tall, but he's a terrible kick and can't provide any kind of drive from that position like Bailey Williams does. Bailey is also simply better at everything we demand from that position. In Williams' absence we've also got Easton having a bit of a resurgence.

Gardner's got the tank, height and athleticism to do what he's asked to do. We all wish we had someone better, but it appears that Bev foresaw the issues with Young and Cordy, so he decided to take Gardner's physical tools, and force feed him games (like Tim) to turn him into the kind of defender he wants. As we see with how Gardner never considers marking and punches the ball to an almost comical degree, it's clear he's also doing what he's told (Maybe to a fault). I assume as he plays more games he'll get more comfortable going for the occasional mark attempt. Much like Tim it's involved some ugly early games, but he simply has far more to work with physically than Zaine, follows structure far better than Young, and has a better tank than both, which is a luxury when planning rotations.

If Keath goes down however we will be in a world of trouble. Structurally speaking, in terms of depth and replacements, he may be the player we can least afford to lose.
 

doggies ftw

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Does anyone remember from Gards early VFL form if he was a decent mark of the footy? If he’s simply not competent at marking the thing then he will always be very very limited and not a viable long term option for our defence. If it’s more just a confidence/role thing and he can get to the stage of at least being somewhat of an aerial threat then he’s worth persisting with as he obviously offers a lot of the things we need down there.

I still think Young has enough to work with and should have been given a block of games to give us an idea of where he’s at. There’s no surprise that Keath played his best two games for the club alongside Young whose work in controlling the air gives Keath a little more freedom to play his game. He has to do too much when hes partnered with Gards/Cordy who have no aerial presence and he has to worry about bodying his man and also being the only one capable in the air too. Young/Keath was working well, now we’ve wasted two weeks on Cordy.

Ive always been a fan of Cordy he usually does a really good job above his limitations, he’s just not cut out for the role we’ve got him in also he’s definitely lost a yard, just too slow for our system.

Two options for mine, we go back to Keath & Young and just back them in over an extended period of games. This probably has the highest upside but could cost us if Young gets burnt. I’ve got confidence in him to come good though. He’s got so much positives in his game I think he just needs a bit of confidence in his game. If he’d have been given the treatment Gards got I’m sure he’d show similar improvement.

Other option is we go with Keath surrounded by Wood, Buku & Croz (and Williams when he’s back) this is also pretty high risk high reward. And so long as the rest of our teams pressure is on it could work fantastically. If we get burnt by a key forward kicking a bag or two every now and then it probably doesn’t matter too much so long as the net positives outweigh the negatives. It’s a pretty strong aerial group but they’ve just gotta help each other out. If we’re getting spanked in the middle it will get ugly though, but tbf if we’re getting spanked in the middle than I don’t think Cordy, Gards or Young will be able to help much anyway.

With option B I’d probably like Timmy getting back and dropping in the hole a lot more than he has been, opening a spot for JUH down front. It’s a pretty mouthwatering Set up IMO, small ball down back with Keath, Wood, Buku, Croz, Williams, Doc & Dale all being competent aerially and offering great rebound. Tall ball up front with Naughty, JUH & Bruce. Genuine utility in English. Our core midfield and the rest of the 22 just made up with whoever’s quick, hard at the ball and in form.
 

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Maverick Dog

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Oct 30, 2003
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I would like to see Khamis given a few games in the role if Young is not going to be given a go. Yes he is only 189cm but has a big leap is the quickest of them all and the best skilled by foot. One on one he icould be no worse than the other 3. I think Gardner is being overrated here. He struggled against Westcoast and has not played on any decent forwards this season apart from Allen who beat him. Cordy on present form is our last option
 

ScottyDogg

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None of the above. I think we bring in Marra and then rotate English and Naughton through a defensive sweeper role, where they create havoc in the air helping out a highly mobile, medium sized intercepting back six of Williams, Dale, Keath, Daniel, Crozier, Doc, Wood, Khamis and Richards (whoever’s fit out of this group)

Whichever of English and Naughton is not rotating through defensive 50 joins Bruce and Marra up front in a the three tall attack.
 

Mattdougie

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People cannot think Young would have done a better job on Lynch on Friday? He would have been annihilated also.

Cordy isn’t the answer but I can promise you Youbg isn’t. His game against the Suns was as bad as Cordys on Lynch and at least Lynch is someone.

He followed up with a sticker in the VFL also.

We need Gards back and a big trade end of year to fill the gap.
 

Sentinel

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Feels like the answer would change on any given week. All options seem to have the odd good game and then some where they are spoken about as relatively poor. We just need to find the one who can get the job done there consistently week on week.
 

LondonBulldog

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Perfect time to give Young an extended run at it, not just out after 1 bad game. He is the best intercept and reader of the flight of the ball, just needs to improve in other areas. Jury out, yet give him a run.
Cordy is a no from me, Khamis would be more competitive in speed and 1 on 1.
Gardiner a maybe if he improves, yet needs to learn to mark at least once a game if in good position.
Final option and this depends on JUH growth (which I believe in) is to play English back on the big guys. This may only be on an at needs basics.

No to having a tiny backline (eg Wood, Williams playing 2nd tall). Robs us of intercept in Wood and run in Williams.
 

Guido

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I was big on Young, but he still has a lot of weaknesses to work on.

I think he could be one of the best intercept marks in the game, but the - occasional- switching off/lack of intensity and disposal will cost multiple goals.

Naughton is just too critical and has too much upside up forward to swing back.

If JUH comes in to the three-pronged attack, I'd seriously give Bruce a shot as a key back.

I have no idea if he has the closing speed, but overall package of strength, contested marking, reading of the play, strength 1-1, I think he's an option worth trying. His disposal can occasionally be atrocious, but I think in general, he can find a teammate or put it to their advantage.

"But he was terrible when tried there 10 years ago" isn't an argument I buy when all of the alternatives have put in terrible performances in the position in the last year.
 

Al dente

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It seems like the better juniors coming through now are confident, attacking, athletic, and not calamitous, not giving you that heart in the mouth feeling every time they go near it.

unfortunately, despite their athletic talent, Young and Gardner have that calamitousness, Cordy is small and slow,

I'd play Gardner or Khamis depending on the opposition and draft or trade for one in the preseason or mid year draft.
 

Virgin Dog

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It seems like the better juniors coming through now are confident, attacking, athletic, and not calamitous, not giving you that heart in the mouth feeling every time they go near it.

unfortunately, despite their athletic talent, Young and Gardner have that calamitousness, Cordy is small and slow,

I'd play Gardner or Khamis depending on the opposition and draft or trade for one in the preseason or mid year draft.
I think Gardner will be fine long term as a depth option, but I fail to see much of a future with Cordy, and Young has moments where I seriously question whether he'll ever make it as an AFL player.
 

Dogsman16

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I was big on Young, but he still has a lot of weaknesses to work on.

I think he could be one of the best intercept marks in the game, but the - occasional- switching off/lack of intensity and disposal will cost multiple goals.

Naughton is just too critical and has too much upside up forward to swing back.

If JUH comes in to the three-pronged attack, I'd seriously give Bruce a shot as a key back.

I have no idea if he has the closing speed, but overall package of strength, contested marking, reading of the play, strength 1-1, I think he's an option worth trying. His disposal can occasionally be atrocious, but I think in general, he can find a teammate or put it to their advantage.

"But he was terrible when tried there 10 years ago" isn't an argument I buy when all of the alternatives have put in terrible performances in the position in the last year.
Liam Jones would have never been trialled back if he had been judged on that sole performance against Adelaide when he was dreadful in defence for that qtr.


Seems like Kingy agrees with you. Naughton is just getting to critical to move back. I felt for Bev on Friday when the move for Naughton to go into defence seemed like a fair idea, yet immediately when we got our 1st or 2nd forward entry of the qtr, it was Naughton who took the crucial mark and goal.

It's also seemed to me that JUH is more suited to the Bruce role rather than Naughton's role so I think that will be the move to be made (that is Bruce trialled back) in due course.
 

Zeno The Great

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Liam Jones would have never been trialled back if he had been judged on that sole performance against Adelaide when he was dreadful in defence for that qtr.


Seems like Kingy agrees with you. Naughton is just getting to critical to move back. I felt for Bev on Friday when the move for Naughton to go into defence seemed like a fair idea, yet immediately when we got our 1st or 2nd forward entry of the qtr, it was Naughton who took the crucial mark and goal.

It's also seemed to me that JUH is more suited to the Bruce role rather than Naughton's role so I think that will be the move to be made (that is Bruce trialled back) in due course.
I don't understand why we haven't tried bruce back either. He lit up nth, but has been serviceable generally rest of the year. In the 2nd half of the year if marra comes on it solves a lot of our problems. I believe bruce was a chb in younger years.
 

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Mofra

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Gardner has only played 15 games. I actually see improvement in his game. He gives 100% and often notches up 100% TOG which is important as interchange rotations are reduced.

Young can intercept, but his worst football is really poor. I'm getting Schache vibes from Young, just lacks intensity.

Cordy was decent but has regressed at a rate of knots.

I don't know why Wood is in this poll. He's shorter than most of our midfielders and a hammy away from being out of our 2022 plans, despite being contracted.

We definitely need to bring in a KPD at the end of the year, and draft a kid to develop for Keath's retirement (Sam Darcy has played KPD for Chargers in at least one game this year but may not be quick enough at AFL level)
 

The City Boyz

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Gardner's determined and wholehearted commitment to the cause and game plan get him the games for me, yeah he's no superstar but the guy does everything he's asked and always keeps opponents honest
 

lachy

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People cannot think Young would have done a better job on Lynch on Friday? He would have been annihilated also.

Cordy isn’t the answer but I can promise you Youbg isn’t. His game against the Suns was as bad as Cordys on Lynch and at least Lynch is someone.

He followed up with a sticker in the VFL also.

We need Gards back and a big trade end of year to fill the gap.
Agree. We need more than just a trade though we also need to draft the best available tall back with our first pick after round 1 and start developing some genuine backs
 

LondonBulldog

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I don't understand why we haven't tried bruce back either. He lit up nth, but has been serviceable generally rest of the year. In the 2nd half of the year if marra comes on it solves a lot of our problems. I believe bruce was a chb in younger years.
We are a premiership threat this year yet not without another Key Back and a small forward. We can afford to have Naughton and English with JUH waiting and 3 pacy forwards. I not sure Bruce will work key back yet its worth a shot. He is fit enough to key up this year.
 

Some Idiot

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I wouldn't have expected to say this last year but on current form I think Gardiner played the role the best in the early games.
 

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