The AFL Fantasy pre-season is warming up as coaches start to work heavily on a Round 1 squad, avoiding players that are in a potential bust/fail spot compared to starting salary or situational roles can set your team off in the right direction.
Article by @aflratingsPete
Rowan Marshall RUCK $736K
Priced at an average of 99.2pts at Round 1
Marshall emerged last season as the No.1 Ruck at the Saints, he averaged a career high 98.7pts scoring 100pts or more in 55.0% of games.
The recruitment of Paddy Ryder in the off-season to provide support at the ruck position will likely restrict the fantasy output for Marshall in 2020, St Kilda coach Brett Ratten has confirmed both Ryder & Marshall will share ruck duties & will try to exploit the opposition based on match-ups for both.
Marshall does have the ability to score at a high rate, but sitting forward in a split role is not an optimal situation from a fantasy perspective.
St Kilda: "Whether Ryder starts in the Ruck or Rowan.. it doesn't matter to us, we think they'll play roughly about the same game time in the Ruck.. its gives great flexibility" Brett Ratten via @1116sen
— aflratings.com.au (@aflratings) January 15, 2020
Nic Newman DEF $693K
Priced at an average of 93.4pts at Round 1
The defensive part of the ground may start to become quite congested for the Blues in 2020, Sam Docherty is eyeing a Round 1 return while Sam Petrevski-Seton & Jack Newnes have been identified for roles across half-back by Carlton assistant coach Dale Amos.
Newman is not one of the elite kicks at Carlton, cleaning up turnovers coming out of the backline will likely be a priority this season which does open the question of role for Newman with a potential to be more of a lock down small defender.
Under Brendon Bolton Newman averaged 88.8pts while under new coach David Teague he averaged 96.4pts, the freedom in which he operated with last season with the above mentioned players plus Kade Simpson may not be available in 2020 which may impact his fantasy output.
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— aflratings.com.au (@aflratings) January 14, 2020
Dyson Heppell MID $696K
Priced at an average of 93.8pts at Round 1
Although previously not a popular selection Heppell has been quite a consistent scoring player in AFL Fantasy, he averaged 100pts or more in 4 consecutive playing years prior to averaging 94.5pts in 2019.
Heppell has been dealing with a foot injury which was managed late last year, he missed 4 of the last 8 games for the Bombers averaging 82.5pts.
So far this pre-season Heppell has been on a modified training program, if the foot injury continues to plague him in 2020 then his fantasy output will likely be restricted once again.
Brayden Fiorini MID $740K
Priced at an average of 99.7pts at Round 1
Fiorini once again was a standout for Gold Coast accruing disposals at will in 2019 averaging 99.7 AFL Fantasy points, he averaged a team high 25.4 Disposals from 21 games.
Gold Coast have been able to recruit several high draft picks in recent years, they have also added to their depth with the acquisition of experienced talent.
At some stage there will be a squeeze on for spots and potentially a far greater distribution of disposals at the Suns but that is likely still a while away, with the addition of several ball winners there could be the possibility that Fiorini who is a prolific ball winning player may be negatively impacted as a result.
Mitch Duncan MID $784K
Priced at an average of 105.7pts at Round 1
The completion of a full pre-season cannot be emphasised enough for season long AFL Fantasy, the end of season & pre-season injuries for Duncan have been far from an ideal preparation for the upcoming 2020 season.
Duncan injured his AC joint in Round 23 last season & underwent surgery prior to the Finals, he then injured his knee in the opening Final subsequently missing the final 2 games for Geelong.
“I’ve started agility & a little bit of footy content Tuesday & we’ll just build from there now.” Mitch Duncan (November 21).
During December Duncan underwent minor surgery on his hip.
“It was a minor procedure & that will set him back a little bit but we still feel he has got a lot of time to get himself right for Round 1” Geelong Football Manager, Simon Lloyd (December).
As it stands right now Duncan remains in the rehab group at the Cats, this is a ‘proceed with caution’ message based on a very limited pre-season.
— aflratings.com.au (@aflratings) December 19, 2019
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