Restricted Free Agent Zach Merrett

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RobbieGray17

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 19, 2007
12,103
6,413
adelaide
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
I've got Essendon in 14th with 5 wins but not much between 14th and 17th.

If Essendon get #2, and #3, I could imagine it would be hard to refuse. I think the only chance of that happening is if Hawks, Collingwood, and Saints all win games.
 

RobbieGray17

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 19, 2007
12,103
6,413
adelaide
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
If Merrett walks and Essendon finish bottom 4 I’d be surprised if they matched. Just take the extra top 5 pick and keep rebuilding.
They may not be the only team planning this and it depends on how strong the top 10 is. I know the top two prospects are highly desired

North with the potential pp
Saints with billings
Collingwood if they traded some players
Carlton with Cripps
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
Gonna be an interesting next month of games for Essendon. My gut says if Essendon can beat Carlton this week, it'll go a LONG way to showing Merrett where we are in comparison to them as they seem like one of the most logical landing spots for him (if Essendon can't retain him). If Essendon can win all four of their next games - Carl, GWS, Freo and North, I reckon a signing could happen sooner than the end of the year. All very much winnable, GWS may be difficult but still can match them. Even if they drop one, I still think it says a lot and does a lot in helping to retain him.
 

schmuttt

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 12, 2014
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Gonna be an interesting next month of games for Essendon. My gut says if Essendon can beat Carlton this week, it'll go a LONG way to showing Merrett where we are in comparison to them as they seem like one of the most logical landing spots for him (if Essendon can't retain him). If Essendon can win all four of their next games - Carl, GWS, Freo and North, I reckon a signing could happen sooner than the end of the year. All very much winnable, GWS may be difficult but still can match them. Even if they drop one, I still think it says a lot and does a lot in helping to retain him.
No chance he leaves Essendon for Carlton barring a monstrous turnaround in Carltons form. If he leaves he goes to a contender.
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
No chance he leaves Essendon for Carlton barring a monstrous turnaround in Carltons form. If he leaves he goes to a contender.
Truly, can't see him leaving Essendon at all now. The wheels would have to completely fall off for that to happen, but I think we're showing a lot in a vast majority of areas that should give Zach faith in direction. But, couldn't agree more in that he won't go to Carlton. I just had to give a fair assessment so the Carlton faithful don't come for me haha. If by some chance he doesn't stay, I honestly can't see him leaving Vic to go play in S.A for Port or even up in QLD for Brisbane though. From what I've read/heard he loves Vic and feels pretty at home here.

I think Zach really loves the club (Essendon) and would love to be a one-club player too, just my gut feel and read of things. But, I clearly understand his frustration and desire to drive/want success. It's always interesting watching him play and seeing how he interacts with players around stoppages/returning centre or even after goals are kicked. He actually looks super invested and united & loving the team when playing. I know it's small and may just be an "in the moment / in the game" kind of mindset thing but, I think that's really interesting to look at. I know it's going to be questioned right until a contract is signed and the media are within their right to talk about it given he is one of the biggest names out of contract this season but I think him staying/not staying at Essendon is a little overdone by some outlets. Feels more and more likely by the weeks that he stays! Just my take though.
 

schmuttt

Brownlow Medallist
Apr 12, 2014
23,162
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Truly, can't see him leaving Essendon at all now. The wheels would have to completely fall off for that to happen, but I think we're showing a lot in a vast majority of areas that should give Zach faith in direction. But, couldn't agree more in that he won't go to Carlton. I just had to give a fair assessment so the Carlton faithful don't come for me haha. If by some chance he doesn't stay, I honestly can't see him leaving Vic to go play in S.A for Port or even up in QLD for Brisbane though. From what I've read/heard he loves Vic and feels pretty at home here.

I think Zach really loves the club (Essendon) and would love to be a one-club player too, just my gut feel and read of things. But, I clearly understand his frustration and desire to drive/want success. It's always interesting watching him play and seeing how he interacts with players around stoppages/returning centre or even after goals are kicked. He actually looks super invested and united & loving the team when playing. I know it's small and may just be an "in the moment / in the game" kind of mindset thing but, I think that's really interesting to look at. I know it's going to be questioned right until a contract is signed and the media are within their right to talk about it given he is one of the biggest names out of contract this season but I think him staying/not staying at Essendon is a little overdone by some outlets. Feels more and more likely by the weeks that he stays! Just my take though.
If he hasn’t signed by the first weekend of the finals (Assuming Essendon don’t make it) he’s gone. He will have had enough time by then to assess Essendon going forward so should he stay I’d expect a contract announcement around rounds 19-20.
 

HirdsTheWord

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Jun 19, 2014
7,265
7,866
AFL Club
Essendon
Truly, can't see him leaving Essendon at all now. The wheels would have to completely fall off for that to happen, but I think we're showing a lot in a vast majority of areas that should give Zach faith in direction. But, couldn't agree more in that he won't go to Carlton. I just had to give a fair assessment so the Carlton faithful don't come for me haha. If by some chance he doesn't stay, I honestly can't see him leaving Vic to go play in S.A for Port or even up in QLD for Brisbane though. From what I've read/heard he loves Vic and feels pretty at home here.

I think Zach really loves the club (Essendon) and would love to be a one-club player too, just my gut feel and read of things. But, I clearly understand his frustration and desire to drive/want success. It's always interesting watching him play and seeing how he interacts with players around stoppages/returning centre or even after goals are kicked. He actually looks super invested and united & loving the team when playing. I know it's small and may just be an "in the moment / in the game" kind of mindset thing but, I think that's really interesting to look at. I know it's going to be questioned right until a contract is signed and the media are within their right to talk about it given he is one of the biggest names out of contract this season but I think him staying/not staying at Essendon is a little overdone by some outlets. Feels more and more likely by the weeks that he stays! Just my take though.
I can.

Its round 6. Yes we have played some good footy but if we don't keep showing Zach we are improving throughout the year I think he's gone.

Definitely getting more confident week to week though
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
If he hasn’t signed by the first weekend of the finals (Assuming Essendon don’t make it) he’s gone. He will have had enough time by then to assess Essendon going forward so should he stay I’d expect a contract announcement around rounds 19-20.
Certainly think that's a logical way to think about it. Essendon will fight tooth and nail to keep him throughout the post-season obviously though. It'd take something pretty incredible for Essendon to play finals this year, however, it's not really about that for us this year & Zach knows that too.
 

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Wild Bill

Brownlow Medallist
May 28, 2013
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Truly, can't see him leaving Essendon at all now. The wheels would have to completely fall off for that to happen, but I think we're showing a lot in a vast majority of areas that should give Zach faith in direction. But, couldn't agree more in that he won't go to Carlton. I just had to give a fair assessment so the Carlton faithful don't come for me haha. If by some chance he doesn't stay, I honestly can't see him leaving Vic to go play in S.A for Port or even up in QLD for Brisbane though. From what I've read/heard he loves Vic and feels pretty at home here.

I think Zach really loves the club (Essendon) and would love to be a one-club player too, just my gut feel and read of things. But, I clearly understand his frustration and desire to drive/want success. It's always interesting watching him play and seeing how he interacts with players around stoppages/returning centre or even after goals are kicked. He actually looks super invested and united & loving the team when playing. I know it's small and may just be an "in the moment / in the game" kind of mindset thing but, I think that's really interesting to look at. I know it's going to be questioned right until a contract is signed and the media are within their right to talk about it given he is one of the biggest names out of contract this season but I think him staying/not staying at Essendon is a little overdone by some outlets. Feels more and more likely by the weeks that he stays! Just my take though.
I’m not sure if this is serious or a joke.
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
I can.

Its round 6. Yes we have played some good footy but if we don't keep showing Zach we are improving throughout the year I think he's gone.

Definitely getting more confident week to week though
I think our game plan is now just starting to click six rounds in + players are finding their feet again as the season flows. I think with that, that'll hopefully enable us to be more competitive and play how we want to play, which should show signs we're heading back in the right direction. Also, we've played Bris, Port, Syd and Coll already - two top four teams, a team that was expected to play finals and obviously Syd who were flying with form during the first five rounds. All very challenging sides to play at that point of the year though. Obviously shouldn't have dropped the Hawthorn game & probably shouldn't have dropped the Sydney game either. Teams should be expected to turn up every week, regardless of who you play but considering where we're at it's a good thing they're out of the way early. But, hopefully with our game plan finally looking like it's starting to click it'll allow us to show how we play + the players can show signs of their improvement (particularly the youth/younger ones) and this will show Zach we're on the right path again. Parish last week playing how he did, no doubt did wonders for Zach's confidence that Essendon is the place for him. In fact, Parish has been a star throughout the first six rounds.

I think if Essendon can manage to win at the very least 8-11 games that'd be a big tick. Obviously, an exciting thing/selling point for him would be seeing the progression of the youth coming through so the continued improvement & showing of players like Cox, Jones, Perkins etc for the remainder of the year will be a big driving point in that too. They'll be rested at some point though. But yeah, I'm with you in that confidence is growing from week to week.
 

HirdsTheWord

🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆
Jun 19, 2014
7,265
7,866
AFL Club
Essendon
I think our game plan is now just starting to click six rounds in + players are finding their feet again as the season flows. I think with that, that'll hopefully enable us to be more competitive and play how we want to play, which should show signs we're heading back in the right direction. Also, we've played Bris, Port, Syd and Coll already - two top four teams, a team that was expected to play finals and obviously Syd who were flying with form during the first five rounds. All very challenging sides to play at that point of the year though. Obviously shouldn't have dropped the Hawthorn game & probably shouldn't have dropped the Sydney game either. Teams should be expected to turn up every week, regardless of who you play but considering where we're at it's a good thing they're out of the way early. But, hopefully with our game plan finally looking like it's starting to click it'll allow us to show how we play + the players can show signs of their improvement (particularly the youth/younger ones) and this will show Zach we're on the right path again. Parish last week playing how he did, no doubt did wonders for Zach's confidence that Essendon is the place for him. In fact, Parish has been a star throughout the first six rounds.

I think if Essendon can manage to win at the very least 8-11 games that'd be a big tick. Obviously, an exciting thing/selling point for him would be seeing the progression of the youth coming through so the continued improvement & showing of players like Cox, Jones, Perkins etc for the remainder of the year will be a big driving point in that too. They'll be rested at some point though. But yeah, I'm with you in that confidence is growing from week to week.
I think we need to be mindful of who we have beaten....

Collingwood + St Kilda. They are both sh*t house.

We also lost a 40 point lead to Hawks who are also sh*t house.

As long as we are competitive against top 8 sides IE don't get blown out every time than that shows good signs. We were competitive against Sydney and should have won but the umpires saw to that.

Definitely good signs currently.
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
I think we need to be mindful of who we have beaten....

Collingwood + St Kilda. They are both sh*t house.

We also lost a 40 point lead to Hawks who are also sh*t house.

As long as we are competitive against top 8 sides IE don't get blown out every time than that shows good signs. We were competitive against Sydney and should have won but the umpires saw to that.

Definitely good signs currently.
Agree with you here, hence why I didn't list STK haha. Collingwood on Anzac Day is a challenge always, regardless of form but yes they are in somewhat of a dismal position in comparison to previous years.

Definitely some great signs though.
 

robbo1981

Premiership Player
Nov 16, 2011
3,527
5,342
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
I can definitely see Essendon moving in the right direction and up the ladder.
Add to that they have picked up some serious talent last yr Cox should of been top 5.
I think he will stay but obviously a number of clubs are going to come with godfather type offers.
It's funny that's there has been very little talk about Bont compared to Zakk.
 

boncer34

Formerly "Dos23"
Jul 11, 2005
50,007
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I can definitely see Essendon moving in the right direction and up the ladder.
Add to that they have picked up some serious talent last yr Cox should of been top 5.
I think he will stay but obviously a number of clubs are going to come with godfather type offers.
It's funny that's there has been very little talk about Bont compared to Zakk.
Bonts captain of a premiership contender. He'd be mental to move.
 

RobbieGray17

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 19, 2007
12,103
6,413
adelaide
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
I can definitely see Essendon moving in the right direction and up the ladder.
Add to that they have picked up some serious talent last yr Cox should of been top 5.
I think he will stay but obviously a number of clubs are going to come with godfather type offers.
It's funny that's there has been very little talk about Bont compared to Zakk.
If Essendon finish say in 12th spot. I'm not sure #7 and 8 get there. What would be an appropriate trade for him? What would you expect could be put up for him. Doubt we'd be able to do a trade.
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
I can definitely see Essendon moving in the right direction and up the ladder.
Add to that they have picked up some serious talent last yr Cox should of been top 5.
I think he will stay but obviously a number of clubs are going to come with godfather type offers.
It's funny that's there has been very little talk about Bont compared to Zakk.
Money is going to play very little in his decision, it's purely about him entering his prime and being in a team that is going to win a flag very soon (or compete). There has been very little talk because internally Bont has pretty much said he wants to stay or more or less that's the feel (plus, he's the captain) and the culture at the Dogs appears pretty good right now + it's obvious where they're at as a club - they're contending for the flag NOW!
 

RobbieGray17

Brownlow Medallist
Sep 19, 2007
12,103
6,413
adelaide
AFL Club
Port Adelaide
Money is going to play very little in his decision, it's purely about him entering his prime and being in a team that is going to win a flag very soon (or compete). There has been very little talk because internally Bont has pretty much said he wants to stay or more or less that's the feel (plus, he's the captain) and the culture at the Dogs appears pretty good right now + it's obvious where they're at as a club - they're contending for the flag NOW!
This is a good point. If you can get the same coin at a better club you probably go for it especially if in a premiership window.
 

Hak94

Debutant
Apr 27, 2021
136
83
AFL Club
Essendon
If Essendon finish say in 12th spot. I'm not sure #7 and 8 get there. What would be an appropriate trade for him? What would you expect could be put up for him. Doubt we'd be able to do a trade.
A high first at the bear min is a starting point, plus some additional picks. Essendon would be wanting two firsts though, knowing how hard Dodoro drives things too. Not sure they'd do two late firsts, it'd have to be a high first + a late first, but they'd be looking for something similar to what the Doggies wanted in return for Dunkley last year (which was two high firsts) as fair deal. If the Saad deal is anything to go off (obviously different positions/roles/experience), Merrett is a far more established, damaging, and better player too so there would need to be more than what was dealt for Saad. But they don't want to lose him, so it's hard to say + we're not even at a point where we know what clubs can offer.
 

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