It was a frustrating season for Adam Treloar in his first year as a Western Bulldog. Multiple injuries and a horrific Grand Final loss is not the way he’d hoped his season would’ve panned out. But, for us, fantasy coaches, one thing has gone his way in the offseason with Champion Data allocating him MID/FWD. Does that have him in your starting squad considerations? It should!

PLAYER PROFILE

Name: Adam Treloar
Age: 28
Club: Western Bulldogs
Position: MID/FWD

2021 Highest Score: 
127 Vs Brisbane (AFLFantasy)
123 Vs Port Adelaide (SuperCoach)

Career Highest Score: 
159 Vs Melbourne | AFLFantasy (2014)
177 Vs Gold Coast | SuperCoach (2019)

2021 Average: 
87.1 (AFLFantasy)
88.7 (SuperCoach)

SuperCoach Price: $483,200
AFLFantasy Price: 
$731,000
AFLDreamTeam Price: 
$743,100

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WHY IS HE RELEVANT?

It’s safe to say the past 18 months on the football field; not a lot has gone the way Adam Treloar would’ve wanted. From being ‘pushed out’ of Collingwood through to multiple injuries and another heartbreaking Grand Final defeat. He battled a calf injury during the preseason and was ‘touch and go’ to play in round one. However, by the time we started to see him deliver the consistent high-performance standards that we’ve become accustomed to, he was sadly then stalled again through injury, but this time an ankle syndesmosis that kept him out of three months of footy.

There were plenty of glimpses in his thirteen home and away games that the at the Bulldogs, he’s going to be a commanding presence. With the likes of Marcus Bontempelli, Tom Liberatore and Jackson Macrae in the midfield, it allowed him to fly under the radar and create damaging moments around the ground that both Pies and Giants fans beforehand loved him for. His bursting speed, coupled with his ability to win multitudes on inside and outside footy, makes him a scary prospect in any midfield, let alone one as stacked as the Doggies.

Last year in AFLFantasy/DreamTeam, he scored six tons, including a season-high 127. He had an additional two games where he scored 85 or higher. In isolation, it doesn’t look like a great season. But data without context is dangerous. He had a six-game stretch between rounds 3-8, where he averaged 109. What happened here? In short, a primary central bounce midfield rotation. But I’ll address that more shortly. Even with an injury impacted score in round 10 (the ankle syndesmosis) and some heavy forward minutes upon his return, he’s still ranked as the sixth-best forward available by averages.

For his year in SuperCoach, he scored five tons and had five additional scores over 80. He also had an elite six-game stretch of scoring between rounds 2-7, averaging 108. Currently, he’s ranked 11th for Averages among all SuperCoach forwards, but I can only see injury as the reason he doesn’t move into the top ten by seasons end.

There is no shortage of fantasy football resources these days. Nearly a decade ago, there was a handful, whereas now it seems everyone knows someone with a podcast. I have no issues with that and think it creates a higher engagement and excitement in the community. However, a trend that can quickly happen when giving out ‘advice’ is that you don’t help people learn the process, mindsets, and data trends. Here at the Coaches Panel, we are committed to helping grow you as a coach by understanding how to ‘fish for yourself’ from a fantasy perspective.

Treloar provides you with an opportunity to see how data, when applied rightly, can help you understand whether or not certain players or picks are the right moves for you. For example, two key things happened last year when Adam attended a minimum of 20% of centre bounces. He had over 20 possessions, and he scored in all formats. In fact, in the seven games last year, he had 20% or higher CBA’s he averaged 99. With scoring like that, he does become a genuine top five forward candidate for the season. Here’s the graph below to help you see this.

RoundPossessionsAFLFantasySuperCoachCBA %
118596310%
225769528%
32710610868%
42912711864%
52610411743%
63511511352%
7271009750%
8231038764%
926858332%
1014374517%
2122907619%
2215567211%
2320758030%

If I wanted to, I could go much deeper into the scoring history of Aadam at both the Pies and Giants. The constant 103-113 averages from 2014-2020 are partially irrelevant in the new team. However, don’t the scoring of above. When he was playing that midfield lead role, he scored the same as what he’d done in both of those two clubs.

The reality is that Adam Treloar, despite being one of the highest averaging forwards, still provides coaches with value. This is based on two primary reasons. One due to heavy forward fifty presence role coming back off the ankle injury that saw him miss three months. The other was in the game when the injury happened. Getting value built at this high end is rare, and something coaches should seriously consider making the most of.

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MY TAKE

There are two big question marks when it comes to selecting Adam Treloar. The first is around the Bulldogs midfield mix, while the other is about a concerning trend of injuries. However, the answer regarding both feels the same for me. With Treloar, you start him and bank the points and games he gives, or you avoid for the season. The ‘risks’ that he does hold won’t change based on the season variables.

The first is the role. Did he play forward late last year out of design or necessity? The weight of data would suggest that necessity makes the most sense. Treloar’s most impact is as a damaging endurance athlete, not forward. Bailey Smith is excellent as a high half-forward, while Cody Weightman will be a headache for oppositions for the next decade. His need isn’t for skill; the role was by force to get game time into him. The Bulldogs were desperate to get him up towards full fitness come finals.

I hear the argument that the Bulldogs do flip the magnets around a lot. But with time, they do not play people out of position that ultimately doesn’t serve that role and play to their team’s strengths. Look at Bailey Dale and Caleb Daniel; both have reinvented themselves in new roles. Treloar has shown a crafty knack at kicking goals over his career, but his true strength is in the midfield. As an aside, even when midfielders have rested forward the Dogs, the high possession game style still keeps them scoring. So the proposed forward heavy role doesn’t concern me,

The second is the injury concerns. Last year alone, ankle and calf injuries ruled him out of time. Previously it’s been hamstrings and other soft tissue injuries. For a player of Adam’s growing injury history, I’d suggest that you not upgrade to them during the season if you don’t start with him. The reason being is with every game played, the ‘risk’ of that potential injury occurring only increases with every game played. Of course, you can upgrade to him if you wish, but know that world you’re getting yourself into.

Ever since SuperCoach and DreamTeam expanded into the DPP additions like AFLFantasy, much has been made on the best starting premium forwards and defenders. The consensus is to create some margin for potential big inclusions; for example, my boy Josh Kelly gained DPP in round six and was a must-have. I agree with the premise to hold some space for a DPP gain, but potentially we’ve already got one sitting in our forwards with Adam Treloar. On any given matchup, he’s capable of being a 110+ performer. So maybe the big ‘in’ to the forwards is already under our noses?

If nothing else, you need to have him on your preseason watchlist. For me, I’ve gone one better in some formats and locked him into my starting squad.

DRAFT DECISION

Adam Treloar could be the best forward in the game by the end of the season. However, I think if you went for him in the second round, you’re paying overs, while if you’re hoping he slides to the fourth or fifth rounds, you’ll be left empty-handed. In AFLFantasy scoring formats, round three feels the suitable space to pounce, while you might get lucky in the fourth round in SuperCoach format. 

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