Before rounds 6, 12 and 18, the gang at Champion Data add some new DPP into the game. After the round, the first list of names and positions will be released. Historically, players need at least 35% to be considered for a new position allocation and at least four games played. So let’s see which players are locked, close or have no chance of getting DPP.Embed from Getty Images
If you’ve tracked the publicly available data hoping to gain insights on future DPPs, seeing Jayden Short attending 67% of centre bounces last weekend isn’t good news. Over a week, he’s gone from someone I would’ve branded as ‘safe’ to gaining DEF status, as now to someone on the borderline. Currently sitting at 34% as a defender, he’s agonisingly close to the trigger of 35% to get the positional allocation. He might just miss out if we have another match like this against Port Adelaide on Sunday afternoon. Sadly, the injury to Jacob Hopper appears to have affected a midfield rotation shuffle for Richmond, and Short has seen a spike. Watch his role on Sunday with interest. He’s a chance for DEF/MID status, but no certainty.Embed from Getty Images
There was a period a few weeks ago when the Sydney Co-Captain was on track to gain defensive status. He was playing down back to cover the injury gaps to Dane Rampe and the McCartin brothers. While the chance was small after playing a heavy midfield role in round eight, any hope was dashed after suffering a calf injury early in round nine against the Dockers. So scrap him from the list. He won’t be getting DEF status heading into round twelve. And given the length of injury layoff he won’t get a positional gain in 2023.Embed from Getty Images
When the 2023 season concludes, and you review the year in hindsight, many will realise that having Dylan Williams on your side will have proven to be vitally important. And that’s for more than just his cash generation, as good as it’s been. Rather the forward has redeveloped himself and his game to become a central part of Port Adelaide’s back six. As a result, I’ve marked him down as a certainty to pick up DEF status and become a DEF/FWD. This will become crucial for us during the multi-byes and allow remarkable squad versatility until it’s time to trade him out at round fifteen.
Traditionally, players gaining MID status are some of the least relevant gains because they need to create a pathway to a higher scoring avenue within your 22. However, what the addition of midfield status does is create versatility and flexibility across your classic and draft sides.
Jack Sinclair has had an increasing presence at centre bounces for St Kilda. Impressively he’s getting enough time across half-back to pick up some of those uncontested possessions and marks and keep his scoring in the top tier of our available defenders. Over the past five weeks, his attendance varying from just over 20% right up towards over 60%. To gain midfield status, he’ll need a game that’s pushing the 50% of midfield time, he’s still determining, but he’s in the conversation. If he does get it, this, alongside his price post-bye, making him ripe for the picking, should see his ownership skyrocket heading into round thirteen.Embed from Getty Images
Cards on the table, I’m a Crows supporter. And I thought Chayce Jones was headed for the trade table or, even worse, a delisting at the end of 2023. Sadly, beyond his first dozen games, he’d been unable to showcase the potential that made him a top-ten draft selection. That’s all changed! What he’s been able to do over the start of this season has given him a career revival.
The former lockdown defender has found a home across the opposite wing to Lachie Sholl, where his toughness and gut running is crucial to the Crows ball movement. His value to fantasy coaches is with his defender status, but especially in drafts, the DEF/MID status could create some positional versatility, especially if you play through the bye rounds.Embed from Getty Images
Champion Data are the team behind the scenes that determine these positions. They’ve stated that a player’s position at centre bounces is a key factor in positional allocation. Over the past four weeks, Jack Stringer has attended 80%, 55%, 38% & 88% of centre bounces. As a result, one more game in this data territory should mean he gains MID/FWD status. Much like Jones above, his value is in drafts as a forward. However, the DPP could help get players on the field if your draft league plays through the byes.Embed from Getty Images
The number one defender in the game by average & points has seen incremental growth in time in the midfield over the past five weeks. Nick Daicos has attended a variation of centre bounces from 17% to 63%. Like Sinclair, he’ll need a heavy midfield game this weekend to get DEF/MID status, and while it’s unlikely, if we see a midfield-heavy game as he did against the Crows (63%), it might just tip him into the threshold to get it.
Any DPP gain can add flexibility and versatility, and with the byes starting next week, should he (or anyone else) gain a position, it could unlock some moves for your squad.Embed from Getty Images
Sometimes, as you head into the round ahead of the DPP movements, the data is overwhelmingly compelling, and the position status is guaranteed. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case with Christian Petracca. He’s close, but he will need a fair share of time starting inside forward fifty this weekend to guarantee the status allocation. CP5 has always had a level of time forward, but this year the split is tantalizingly close to him returning to our forward lines.
During the preseason series of the 50 most relevant, I flagged the potential of him gaining forward status. And it’s a reminder for us again that in our starting squad and early season trading cadence, we need to create space for this level of elite scoring that can become part of the game. Should this MID/FWD status land, between him and a few other gains, we might see a complete revolution of what is deemed the ‘top six’ forward for the 2023 season.
With the uncertainty around Clayton Oliver playing this week (and beyond), I’m not sold; we’ll get the heavy-forward time game needed for this DPP to pop.Embed from Getty Images
Lock this one up and throw away the key. This time next week, you’ll be able to select Sam Walsh as a forward. Since his return from injury, he’s been sensational, regularly posting large tons seemingly at will across all formats. The primary causation for the move has been to ease him back into the rigours of AFL.
Regardless of the causation, the positive outcome is that he could pick up forward status. He’s currently on the borderline of it, but as long as Michael Voss doesn’t release him back into a heavy midfield (like last week) role, he should pick up MID/FWD status.
The huge upside with him is that regardless of his future midfield/forward split, he’s shown his scoring is unaffected. So when you combine the current trend and his historical pedigree, we might be about to receive the new top forward by an average of 2023. While the upside is you’ll get a top-tier premium midfield in the forward line; the challenge will be finding the cash to land him.Embed from Getty Images
Much like his teammate in Christian Petracca, the possible gain of forward status from either Max Gawn or Brodie Grundy was telegraphed all preseason due to the Demons two headed ruck monsters. To date, Max has become the one that Melbourne has used more forward, with Brodie taking the lead ruck role. Currently, the Demons skipper is sitting right on the 35% threshold. If Gawn can hold this percentage for one more week will get Gawn as an RUC/FWD.
His addition could be an absolute game-changer for multiple reasons. First, an early-season injury has impacted his price point to insanely low space. His round 14 bye round for him means you can maximise him through the rucks in the byes alongside any combination of Rowan Marshall, Tim English or Sean Darcy you have. Third, his potential DPP flexibility could open up loopholes and depth coverage without having to make trades. And lastly, his non-injury-affected average is 93 in AFLFantasy/DreamTeam and 102 in SuperCoach. All in all, if Gawn gains it, this could be the biggest addition of the year!Embed from Getty Images
One week can make a significant difference. This time last week, I had Jackson Macrae as a 50/50 split of gaining MID/FWD status or missing it. After his win against the Crows on the weekend, I’ve got him heading north of 75% confidence picking up forward status. What’s been the cause of the growth? Data! In the period of one round, he’s gone from 35% as a forward upwards to 40%, according to the Herald Sun. Much like others on this list, his pending position status will be determined entirely on his role in the Bulldogs midfield this weekend.Embed from Getty Images
Over the past few seasons since DPP gains have become an evolution, we’ve often seen high-end midfield talent gain FWD or DEF status as the clubs look to build their bodies and fitness to handle the rigours of AFL football. Players like North Melbourne’s Tom Powell or Hawthorn’s Connor MacDonald have had this happen over the journey. This isn’t and won’t be the case with Will Ashcroft. He’s spent some time as a forward, but he’s been used most of his game as a wingman and a centre-bounce midfielder. He’s zero chance of getting an additional position. Sorry to burst the bubble.Embed from Getty Images
Two weeks ago, I was growing in confidence that we’d see Dion Prestia pick up MID/FWD status. The Tigers premiership midfielder had been one of the pieces that the coaching staff had used to create room for Jacob Hopper and Tim Taranto to become the primary two midfielders at centre bounces. While the possible gain wouldn’t have added classic coaches, it sure would’ve recouped some of the loss of draft capital for coaches who play draft. Instead, due to this forward time increase, his scoring declined.
However, due to an injury to Jacob Hopper, I suspect the trend of last weekend will continue when his CBA’s start to return to normal. As much as I’d love to give some hope to owners, I don’t think it’s coming. Barring a drastic turn of events this weekend, he’ll maintain his pure midfield status.