The Bombers have been the feel good story over the last four days since their stirring comeback against Adelaide last Friday night.
They are now ten wins from 17 games so far this season and have knocked over current top eight sides Brisbane, GWS and Adelaide.
Their form over the last nine weeks has been an impressive 7-2 with their only losses coming to the last two premiership winning teams. Not bad if you ask me.
So where to now for Essendon? Is 2019 still a season where they can make a serious run at a premiership, or have they left themselves too much to do in the back half of the year?
A quick look at their next four weeks would suggest they aren’t going to make up the numbers. They have Gold Coast, Port Adelaide, Western Bulldogs and Fremantle.
None of those games should be ones that fill John Worsfold’s men with trepidation. Three of those sides have also got slim chances of making the eight and the Suns are on a 13 match losing streak.
The Bombers shouldn’t take anyone lightly though, as in the past two seasons they have lost to the bottom placed side on the table. So this week is a massive mental test for the men from Windy Hill.
If they manage to win against the Suns, then things can start turning for them in terms of top four chances. The reason why is because Collingwood are playing Richmond this weekend.
It’s fourth against fifth, but more importantly the loser of this game would potentially slip below Essendon if the Bombers have a big win – more than likely Richmond would have to lose for this scenario to happen and Essendon to win by eight goals plus.
It is possible for the Pies to lose by enough and the Bombers to leapfrog them.
Another game which could help Essendon’s top four hopes would be Port Adelaide against GWS. If the Power can somehow manage to win that one, it would leave Essendon fifth at the end of the round.
So if the Bombers can win well against the Gold Coast, followed by Collingwood or Richmond getting touched up and Port Adelaide upsetting the Giants, then they will be in fifth position after this weekend.
You may be wondering, “Okay yes, those results are possible. But how can the Bombers make up another position?”
That will be a tricky task, mainly because the Giants and Pies have quite easy runs home after this weekend. Collingwood has Gold Coast, Melbourne and Adelaide away before meeting Essendon in the Round 23. GWS have Sydney, Hawthorn, Western Bulldogs and Gold Coast.
The team I’m not sure will win all of their remaining games is Richmond. They have the potential to drop games against West Coast and Brisbane in the final two rounds of the season.
West Coast have made the MCG a fortress recently and the Lions have made a habit this year of smashing hoodoos.
If that happens – and the Bombers go 15-7 or even 14-8 with a decent percentage – they could make the top four.
If they can snatch fourth spot they would most likely play Geelong first week in the finals. From there, anything is possible.