I’m prone to exaggerations and at first, glance to say these preseason matches are the ‘most important’ ever probably is a stretch, but it certainly bears more importance for SuperCoach & AFLFantasy coaches than any of recent times. It’s for one major reason…

The rule changes!

While I’ve seen plenty of speculation about how these roles ‘could’ or ‘might’ impact the game of AFL, due to the fact that some of these rules have only been trialled in a small sample size at the state level we do not know in full what this will do to the game. How will these new rules affect the role of certain players, clubs game styles and as such the impact for Fantasy Footy coaches?

Does the new ruck rule drastically diminish the number of hitouts a ruck wins around the ground? Conversely, if rucks grab the ball out of the air more will we see more ruckman tackling? Do ‘kick outs’ count as a possession? Will the hands in the back rule for forwards mean more marks? Does the starting structure at every centre bounce of 6-6-6 open up the game and reward more outside and link up players for fantasy?

We can make an educated guess and come up with a countless number of the hypothesis of what may happen, but the end of the day until we see it we just don’t fully know. This is why these games will be crucial, this will be our first chance to see how clubs have adapted and evolved around these new rules and what impact this will have on our fantasy players.

This will be especially critical in selecting not just potential breakout players but also with our premiums, whom early on their scoring success will either halt or kick start your scoring season. You could build a case that these rules will create fewer stoppages at players who’s fantasy numbers are based on either tackles or winning high volume of contested possesions will see a scoring decline?

Fantasy coaches who do the research and back their gut (plus get a dose of luck) will prevail, hopefully for your sake, it’s you!  What potential impact do you see the new rule changes having? Get in touch with us and have your say at our Facebook,  Twitter or Instagram

If you haven’t seen the preseason fixture yet, we’ve added it for you here.

2019 JLT Community Series Fixture

Week one

Thursday, February 28 Carlton v Essendon at Ikon Park, 6.40pm EDT

Friday, March 1 West Coast v Geelong at Leederville Oval, 4.10pm WST

Saturday, March 2 North Melbourne v St Kilda at Avalon Airport Oval, Werribee, 1.10pm EDT Adelaide v Port Adelaide at the Memorial Oval, Port Pirie, 3.40pm CDT GWS Giants v Sydney at Blacktown International Sportspark, 7.10pm EDT

Sunday, March 3 Brisbane v Hawthorn at Moreton Bay Central Sports Complex, 12.40pm EST Richmond v Melbourne at Deakin Reserve, Shepparton, 4.40pm EDT Gold Coast v Western Bulldogs at Great Barrier Reef Arena, Mackay, 6.40pm EST

Monday, March 4 Fremantle v Collingwood at HBF Arena, Joondalup, 3.40pm WST 

Week two

Thursday, March 7 Geelong v Essendon at GMHBA Stadium, 7.10pm EDT

Friday, March 8 GWS Giants v Adelaide at UNSW Canberra Oval, 7.10pm EDT

Saturday, March 9 Port Adelaide v North Melbourne at Alberton Oval, 12.40pm CDT Melbourne v Brisbane at Casey Fields, Cranbourne, 4.10pm EDT Hawthorn v Richmond at UTAS Stadium, 7.10pm EDT

Sunday, March 10 Sydney v Gold Coast at Oakes Oval, Lismore, 1.10pm EDT Western Bulldogs v St Kilda at Mars Stadium, Ballarat, 4.10pm EDT Fremantle v West Coast at Rushton Park, Mandurah, 4.10pm WST

Monday, March 11 Collingwood v Carlton at Morwell Recreation Reserve, 2.10pm EDT