Soapit, the process when announced in August couldn't see into the future, could it. The process when announced in August was confident of enticing the Genia, AACs, Kepus, etc.
The only thing that has changed is the players now coming into frame for these sort of deal, not the process itself..
Let me put it another way then, because I think the debate is getting lost on Foley the player.
If there's two genuine options for a position, maybe a third but he's also an option elsewhere, and if one of the top two is dithering on what he wants to do, then of course the other one becomes the priority.
In addition, just look at the genuine 10 options: Cooper, Foley, Toomua, Debreczini.
Toomua's locked in; not going anywhere. Cooper is an unknown, and Debreczini may well become a star, but he's a long way off.
That leaves Foley.
Yes, there's other possible 10s (O'Connor, Beale, Lealiifano, Godwin, etc), but Nathan Grey and Tim Horan were also theoretically 10 options, but only in dire situations.
My point being, that Foley has to be seen as a priority player of the current crop, he just has to be.
If it's obvious to you and me Buk, I can't see how the TAB wouldn't think the same way. They're as logically-minded as the rest of us.. ;-)