Football lost its collective mind in round three – there were upsets galore including an unfathomable result in the final game of the weekend.
It did serve as a reminder, however, that in a league of professionals, preparation and application is every bit as important as ability.
Last week: 1
The Crows’ slow starts will eventually catch up with them if they can’t find a way to correct things – they’ve trailed at quarter-time every round – but another win against a quality opponent keeps them at the top of the rankings.
Last week: 3
The Giants are good, damn good. Not much else to say about them at this stage.
Last week: 4
There’s no shame in losing to the Crows. Port took it up to their crosstown rivals for most of the night, but unfortunately when good teams play each other, a good team loses. This week’s clash with the Giants looks the game of the round.
Last week: 6
Hard to get a read on the Cats. For the second week in a row they got out of jail. Patrick Dangerfield and Joel Selwood again took charge when required. They’re good, but it’s hard to tell how good.
Last week: 5
Struggled to get things on their terms after quarter time and didn’t adapt to the weather as well as the Tigers when the rain hit. Jack Darling keeps giving his critics ammunition. Why isn’t he better?
Last week: 2
Playing like a bunch of guys who spent the summer being told how good they are. The Dogs had a round-low six tackles inside 50 at the weekend – things aren’t working as they’d like.
Last week: 10
The Tigers’ win over the Eagles was full of toughness and class. It was the win of a good footy team, maybe even a very good one. Alex Rance looked like Alex Rance again after a poor first fortnight. Wet-weather footy rocks. Daniel Rioli… drool.
Last week: 7
Will be kicking themselves after kicking themselves out of Saturday’s game against the Cats. Were the better team in general play for most of the afternoon but wasted far too many chances. A fresh test awaits in the weeks without Max Gawn. This still looks like a good footy team.
Last week: 11
Did what they had to against the Lions. Nick Riewoldt is a cyborg. They have Hawthorn’s first-round pick.
Last week: 9
Their two wins don’t look so impressive now. Now they must set themselves for a clash with the Crows at Adelaide Oval – ooph.
Last week: 14
The Pies finally got reward for effort after a couple of frustrating weeks for Collingwood fans. The first quarter was extremely impressive.
Last week: 8
The Swans can just about kiss finals goodbye. Development could soon become a priority for John Longmire with so many inexperienced players required to contribute.
Last week: 12
The Roos are showing plenty of pluck and are playing an entertaining style of footy, but they continue to concede loads of scoring shots to opponents – 31, 27 and 34 in the first three rounds. They’ll continue to be a pain in the bum for good sides. Wins will come.
Last week: 14
Of all the pieces the Blues have in place in the early stages of their rebuild, Brendon Bolton might be the most significant.
Last week: 18
A 188-point turnaround in two weeks. Dominated from start to finish against the Hawks thanks in no small part to Gary Ablett jr, who for the 26th time in his career recorded at least 35 disposals and two goals – turns out he’s still pretty good.
Last week: 17
Where has that energy been? It would have been easy for the Dockers to fold after the Dogs took a handy lead into the final change; instead, they ratcheted up the intensity and pressure and outscored the reigning premiers 31-1 in the last quarter.
Last week: 15
It could have been worse if the Saints kicked straight, but a five-goal loss on the road against a decent team is nothing for these developing Lions to be ashamed of.
Last week: 13
Wow. Not even Cam Rose could have seen this coming. Just… wow.