Buddy Franklin hasn’t been this cheap in a decade. Even with an injury impacted preseason is he worth considering in 2020?

PLAYER PROFILE

Name: Lance Franklin
Age: 32
Club: Sydney Swans
Position: Forward

2019 Highest Score: 
117 Vs West Coast (AFLFantasy)
127 Vs West Coast (SuperCoach)

2019 Average: 

70.5 (AFLFantasy)
72.6 (SuperCoach)

SuperCoach Price: $394,200
AFLFantasy Price: 
$666,000
AFLDreamTeam Price: 
$509,700

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WHY IS HE RELEVANT?

2019 was a disappointing season for the Swans and for Buddy, from a fantasy footy perspective it’s his lowest seasonal average since 2007. For SuperCoach & AFLFantasy he managed just two scores over 100. The positive is this wasn’t a drastic role change that caused such an unfortunate turn out or the aging decline of a star. Instead, it was persistent injuries that limited his ability to play to his fullest potential.
In SuperCoach he’s priced 28 points below what he delivered in 2018. For AFLFantasy/DreamTeam it’s 21 points.
A look into his 2018 season reminds us of his scoring potential. From his 128 games for SuperCoach, he began the year with a 175 against the West Coast Eagles. By seasons end he had eight scores over the ton, four over 120 and three over 160. Additionally, he had three scores between 90-99 and averaged 100.
AFLFantasy/DreamTeam was also a strong season with eight tons (including a 151 for the first game) and an additional three matches between 90-99.
61% of his games in all formats of the game he scored 90 or above this year. Not bad for a player who we’re forking out at the price point of 70.
Since joining the Swans over the past six seasons, he’s got an AFLFantasy/DreamTeam average of 90 and a SuperCoach average of 94. Currently, he’s underpriced by 20 points per game from his career Sydney average.

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MY TAKE

Before the Swans Christmas break, Lance Franklin was dominating on the track. It can be challenging to get away from the preseason hype from coaches where everyone can sometimes be seen to be ‘flying this preseason.’ However, it seemed evident to anyone who attended the club preseason training that Buddy was back. It was the first time in years that he’d completed preseason training before Christmas

That all changed where earlier this month he was forced to undergo some minor knee surgery which has put his ability to be available for round one in doubt.

2019 was his lowest games tally across his season. Although Buddy has only played every game in a season three times across his career, his recent ability to play has been strong. Between 2016-2018 he has only missed four games, and in two of those seasons, he played every game.

If you were keen on him before the injury, do we have justification for going cool on him, even if it is now as an in-season trade rather than just a starting squad selection?

This is the lowest price he’s been in 12 seasons, based on where he’s ranked as the #55 forward FWD in SuperCoach and 50th in DreamTeam,

Should he get himself available for the opening game of the year, the Swans have a relatively good early fixture with matches against Adelaide, Essendon, Gold Coast, Carlton, GWS and Brisbane. That’s not a bad opening run For Buddy and Sydney.

Significant premiums on this line from the same bye week are Isaac Heeney, Dustin Martin and Michael Walters. After that, it’s just potential breakout options, not proven players like Buddy.

Whether he’s named round one or not, I like the value of Buddy this year. Targetting him as an upgrade trade could work out even better. That way, I get a chance to observe him play a few games and then opt-in with a trade if I like what I see.

DRAFT DECISION

As the preseason goes on if he’s not looking likely as being available for the Swans in round one then he could slide down peoples draft boards. On potential, he could score as the F1 in a draft side.

I think you could get him at F3 easily in a draft. Maybe even further. At that point on the risk of him, missing games or getting injured is eliminated. A anywhere near fit Buddy is going to deliver an average in the ’90s.

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