50 Most Relevant, Preseason 2019

#16 Most Relevant: Nat Fyfe

Nobody doubts his fantasy scoring pedigree, but there seem to be plenty of questions about how many games he plays. For me I think Nat’s going back to his Brownlow best!

PLAYER PROFILE

Name: Nat Fyfe
Age: 27
Club: Fremantle Dockers
Position: Midfield

2018 Highest Score: 
144 Vs Gold Coast (AFLFantasy)
160 Vs Gold Coast (SuperCoach)

2018 Average: 

102.1 (AFLFantasy)
113.9 (SuperCoach)

SuperCoach Price: $618,100
AFLFantasy Price:
$741,000
AFLDreamTeam Price: 
$730,500

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WHY IS HE RELEVANT?

Nat Fyfe is one of the premier midfielders in the league. No matter where on the ground he plays he’s unmatched in almost every area of the game. Inside the contest, he’s a bull, in the air he’s strong and imposing and to top it all of when need he’s a daunting presence inside forward 50 for any defender to stop him.

Last year from his 15 games played he scored 9 AFLFantasy/DreamTeam tons with 7 of those were over 115. For SuperCoach it was even stronger as he delivered eleven matches where he scored over the hundred, 9 of which were over 110. Between rounds 2-10 he went on a nine-week scoring bender in SuperCoach with his lowest score being a 101 and an average of 131. During that same period of time for AFLFantasy/DreamTeam, he averaged 117 and didn’t drop a score below 91. The year prior he played 21 games and averaged 97 in AFLFantasy/DreamTeam and scored 8 tons, with 6 of them over 120.

For SuperCoach his 2017 seasonal average of 108 complied with 12 scores over one hundred included 7 over 120. During that season Fyfe’s role was marginally different to some of the previous years as he was used not just as a resting forward like Dustin Martin but as a key forward for large chunks of the game. When he was released back to a predominant midfield role over the final 5 games of the year he averaged 108 in AFLFantasy/DreamTeam and 130 in SuperCoach.

It’s still 4-5 years ago but doesn’t mean we should discount or forget his phenomenal SuperCoach seasons from 2014 & 2015. During the 36 games, he played of a possible 44 he scored 30 tons and averaged 123. If your curious while not as dominant in terms for AFLFantasy it’s 24 tons and an average of 103.

MY TAKE

Fremantle had one of the busiest trade periods of the club history. They sent midfielder and fellow 50 Most Relevant player Lachie Neale to Brisbane and recruited key forwards Jesse Hogan and Rory Lobb. All three of these player movements are crucial to Nat Fyfe.

Since the retirement of Matthew Pavlich, the Dockers have lacked someone with a genuine forward presence that could provide them with avenues to goal and as often seen Fyfe was used for large chunks of the game playing as a forward. The recruitment of these two key targets means Fyfe will only ever be used to rest forward and not have to play forward.

On top of the forward line gains, they’ve lost one of the best clearances players in the league. Adam Cerra and Andy Brayshaw will no doubt become starts of the competition and essential cogs of the midfield, but as second-year players, they can’t cover the load. The primary responsibility in the midfield lands on Fyfe’s shoulders and with the forward line sorted his skills and time need to be invested inside the midfield and as such his time in the middle should increase in contrast to previous years.

The only compelling case you can create for passing on Nat Fyfe is his durability. Only twice across his career has he played 20 games or more and is yet to complete a full season. While it is a concern, it shouldn’t be a complete deterrent to starting with him. Coaches that are not selecting him need to be aware of the potential risk, especially for SuperCoach, also have risk associated.

The risk for coaches passing on him is because if you choose not to own him because of durability concerns, I believe he cannot be an upgrade target at all. If he averages 123 over the first seven weeks (for example) if the only reason you’re passing on him as a starting squad is an injury and durability concern, then you can’t upgrade to him. The durability question still exists, and the likelihood of injury based on history is now higher than it was seven weeks earlier and you missed those scores. While it feels like you’ll be damned if you do and damned if you don’t with Fyfe I know, I always prefer to own guys with massive ceiling and scoring consistency and cop any trade I may have to make along the way.

Currently, he’s starting in my SuperCoach and AFLFantasy sides and only a preseason injury will change my plans. For DreamTeam I’m actively looking to see what changes I can make to squeeze him into my structure.

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DRAFT DECISIONS

Depending on the format you play that will determine how quickly he’s off the draft board. If it’s a SuperCoach format, he’s safely gone in the first round and will be somebody’s M1. While in AFLFantasy he’s a strong M2 and probably taken in the 3rd or 4th round. While not the more prominent scorer in this format in contrast to SuperCoach he is a big name and as such doesn’t last long in any draft format.

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