AFL Power Rankings 2018: JLT Community Series edition

AdelaideDocker Roar Guru

By AdelaideDocker, AdelaideDocker is a Roar Guru

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    The preseason is officially over and Round 1 is just a fortnight away. Who looked mighty in the JLT Community Series – and who didn’t?

    1.Richmond
    Comfortably beat a probably-good team in the Dons, and a probably-not-so-good team in the Kangaroos. Either way, their victories were clinical and fearsome. The premiers aren’t resting on their laurels this season. Be wary of them. Very wary.

    2.Sydney Swans
    Standard Sydney fortnight, to be honest. Their win over Brisbane was business as usual and didn’t tell us much, but their win over GWS came of the back of a closely-fought topsy-turvy game. Most peg them for finals, and I can’t disagree.

    3.Port Adelaide
    The loss to West Coast would’ve stung, but holy hell that fightback against the Crows was brilliant. A bag of six goals from Jack Watts was an added bonus, as was their incredible accuracy in Saturday’s match. Tracking well for a big year.

    4.Carlton
    Everything that Carlton fans could’ve wanted happened. Their attacking flair was evident, and they got two wins. Booting over 100 points was the cherry on top.

    5.GWS Giants
    This squad ain’t the cause for pessimism that some believe. Solid win over Collingwood, before looking a combination of poor and brilliant against the Swans. They’ll be happy with their preseason performances, despite the loss to their arch-rivals.

    6.Melbourne
    Their second half against the Saints was almost a very Melbourne thing to do, but their win over North was a great start to the year. Most have them pegged for finals, and despite the their close(ish) call against the Saints, I have no new qualms. Just a few age-old Melbourne-esque doubts.

    7.Adelaide
    Great last minute performance against my Dockers, but would’ve been disappointed with their capitulation against Port – especially deep in enemy territory. Darcy Fogarty looks the goods.

    8.Essendon
    A tale of two JLT games. Dreadful in their first against the premiers, they were pretty good against the Cats. A fair to middling effort, ultimately.

    9.Fremantle
    Freo would’ve been disappointed with their effort in their game in SA, but they were excellent in dominating their arch-rival yesterday. A ladder resurgence? We can’t get ahead of ourselves, but their ball movement and attacking flair was on point.

    10.Geelong
    Dangerfield’s injury likely the biggest story out of Geelong’s preseason. Match wise, it’s difficult to put too much stock in their first loss, but their second would’ve made the diehards bitter.

    11.Western Bulldogs
    Like many other teams, they had one good win, and one loss. They showcased skill in their resurgence in the Hawks game, but they’d be worried by their flat performance after a great first quarter against the Pies. Ultimately, an average preseason.

    12.Collingwood
    Always a divisive team, Collingwood impressed with their win over the Dogs, but they fulfilled the doubts of pessimists with their flat performance in JLT 1. It remains to be seen which is the reflection of the real Collingwood.

    13.St Kilda
    Their second-half fightback against Melbourne was admirable, but their loss against Carlton was beyond poor. They showed a little, but not enough. Disappointing fortnight.

    14.Gold Coast
    Optimists will appreciate the two wins, pessimists will note they came against a Geelong side missing their Holy Trinity and Brisbane. Either way, they might not be as bad at this footballing caper as we think.

    15.West Coast
    They were utterly dreadful in JLT2, sure, but won a thriller in JLT1. Most have them pegged for a slide down the ladder, and based on this evidence that’ll probably eventuate.

    16.Hawthorn
    Two losses, which will sting, but it wasn’t their opponents which were their biggest foes. Third quarters were.

    17.North Melbourne
    Any doubts about North Melbourne’s immediate potential were probably amplified. A little anonymous in both their games, but they fulfilled the rebuilding stereotype in playing the youth. Good on ’em.

    18.Brisbane Lions
    Two losses, and the Lions never particularly looked like winning either. I’d have wanted to see more from a team heading into a potential year of resurgence.

    Rebuild announcement

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    The Crowd Says (19)

    • Roar Guru

      March 12th 2018 @ 10:51am
      Paul Dawson said | March 12th 2018 @ 10:51am | ! Report

      You are seeing more. It’s just other teams also brought more.

      Sydney was a bad game, I’ll give you that, but those matches against the Suns are always a coin toss and that’s before you throw the rain into the mix.

      We looked a much better side when Hodge was on the field, the Suns got a goal pretty much as soon as he went off for a break. He will be so important out there. Can we make him the runner for games he’s not playing in?

      Seriously.

      • Roar Guru

        March 12th 2018 @ 12:02pm
        AdelaideDocker said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:02pm | ! Report

        Yeah, I’ll cop that. I might have been a bit harsh on Brisbane, but two losses wherein they don’t look like winning either – let’s be honest, they weren’t ever winning that Suns game – didn’t bode well for me. Doesn’t mean I think they’re going to go horribly in the actual season though!

        Hodge was hugely important, though, yeah.

    • Roar Rookie

      March 12th 2018 @ 11:01am
      Mattician6x6 said | March 12th 2018 @ 11:01am | ! Report

      Pre season is pre season. Geelong woefully bad against GC, wce woefully bad vs freo. Both had tight games against teams who they’ll compete with for the finals.

    • March 12th 2018 @ 11:36am
      Dan, Concord said | March 12th 2018 @ 11:36am | ! Report

      AD you have taken on the job of compiling power rankings- very brave of you. Good luck with this. I think you have summed up the rankings well.
      Being a Hawks fan I’m in 2 minds about their preseason form. I think their game against the Dogs was decent but as you say in the 3rd they switched off.
      But their game against the Blues was very concerning especially their kicking in general play and their decision making.
      Whitecross made an incredibly stupid decision which i think was reflective of the team in general. He did the hard work and won a centre clearance only to blaze away and bomb it into the forward line and straight into the arms of a blues defender. I almost threw my phone into the bin! He didn’t want to take a second (he had the time and was under no pressure) and try to find someone to kick it to? Then there was O’mera kicking backwards to the CBH only for his kick to be intercepted and a resultant goal. The some of those grubber kicks and fumbles. Is this a team very low on confidence or concentration? They are going to need a massive improvement or God help me but Don might finally be right about where he thinks the Hawks will finish this year.

      • Roar Guru

        March 12th 2018 @ 12:04pm
        AdelaideDocker said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:04pm | ! Report

        Ha! I’m pretty sure me taking this gig for the season means I’m certifiably insane.

        I blogged the Hawks-Dogs game and yeah, it was a very good game. Hawks were in that one for a long while, but their fade out was worrying. I think those concerns were more than amplified with the Carlton loss, as well.

        • March 13th 2018 @ 11:14am
          Birdman said | March 13th 2018 @ 11:14am | ! Report

          Good job AD – Not sure I’m as worried after losing to the blues – thrashed them in scoring shots, marks inside fwd 50 and played 3 less on the bench which had an impact after half time.

          Polish up our kicking and Hawks win by plenty.

    • Roar Guru

      March 12th 2018 @ 12:17pm
      Cat said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:17pm | ! Report

      Dangerfield’s injury likely the biggest story out of Geelong’s preseason. Match wise, it’s difficult to put too much stock in their first loss, but their second would’ve made the diehards bitter.

      Don’t have any issue with the ranking or the first part but the bold is wrong. After losing two players to injury in a meaningless game, I certainly didn’t want Geelong to ‘put it all on the line’ to win 4 non-existent points. I don’t care much about JLT score lines at the best of times, after the injuries I cared not one iota. When the game ended I was just glad it was over and no one else was hurt.

      • Roar Guru

        March 12th 2018 @ 12:26pm
        AdelaideDocker said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:26pm | ! Report

        I more meant it in the way that a loss to Essendon would always be slightly annoying for Cats fans, but I completely understand your sentiment about the game.

        Power Rankings aren’t usually done after JLT anyway, so it is genuinely hard to rank them after “meaningless games”, but the forum wanted to try something different this year.

        • Roar Guru

          March 12th 2018 @ 12:41pm
          Cat said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:41pm | ! Report

          TBH, I’d probably rank the Cats a bit lower because heading into the season we’ve got a number of injury issues already and some key players have not played much preseason game time or even any at all.

          Hopefully the next fortnight will make a few more available. I won’t be surprised if 3 or 4 AFL players play in next weekends VFL preseason game (Joel Selwood did last year after playing in no JLT games for example [TRIVIA: That was also Joel’s first and only VFL game of his career]).

          • Roar Guru

            March 12th 2018 @ 12:54pm
            AdelaideDocker said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:54pm | ! Report

            In an original draft, I had the Cats above Freo and Essendon. But then Freo decided to play football well for once and I figured Essendon win over your side naturally propelled them above them. I was tempted to put the Bulldogs and maybe even Collingwood above the Cats, but that might’ve been a leap too far.

            Yeah, I think that fortnight might be your saving grace. I’d imagine your medical and physio teams will be working like crazy over the next fourteen or so days!

    • March 12th 2018 @ 12:25pm
      truetigerfan said | March 12th 2018 @ 12:25pm | ! Report

      Good effort with the rankings albeit with limited and confusing data, AD. Wish you luck for the upcoming season. Carna Tigers!

    • March 12th 2018 @ 6:00pm
      Leonard said | March 12th 2018 @ 6:00pm | ! Report

      “Who looked mighty in the JLT Community Series – and who didn’t?” – And w\ho TF cares?

      Haven’t even had the fake-interest to find out WTF ‘JLT’ means.

      In a football universe now far, far away, the pre-season competition – in the early 1990s 75,000 turned up at Waverley to see Essendon v Richmond in the GF, but I reckon most spectators remember it ‘coz some songstress said ‘Hi! tonight I’m gunna sing you some of my new songs” = instant turn-off. Still have no idea who she was nor of any of her songs old or news. And don’t care. Still, 75000 was a bonzer turnout.

      How about this for a pre-season: yes to the AFLW comp while it’s finding its legs; yes to a week or two of AFLX; and yes to two weekends of inTRA-club practice games. But no inTER-club pretend matches with their false prefiguring of what we’re all waiting for..

      Which, for those of us in the ‘Too much footy is still not enough’ mob, might mean a couple of extra H&A rounds. (Would even be happy with a tradeoff like 15+ minute quarters, but not any silly figure like 17-and-a-half minute ones.

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