As a disclaimer, it was a rough week for me on a personal level, not enabling me to watch as much footy as I usually enjoy watching on any such weekend, and perhaps resulting a less polished rankings this weekend, for which I pre-emptively apologise.
But nevertheless, here are Round 4’s rankings – a slightly easier column to position than the first couple this year, thankfully.
Last week: 1
When you’ve got a 100 per cent percentage lead over literally everyone else, something is going right. West Coast presented a metaphorical challenge as a whole – and a literal challenge in the third term – but the Power dusted them aside with ease. Port versus Brisbane next weekend – hell yeah!
Last week: 3
Gosh, the inaccuracy. Ten goals, 23 behinds admittedly makes for painful reading, but win they were expected to do and win they did. Given Adelaide’s feebleness at the minute, Brisbane’s win was perhaps the most regulation of the round.
Last week: 4
Freo were (as expected) a dogged opponent, but the Suns were in it to win it for longer and were duly rewarded. A bigger test comes next week: Geelong, in Geelong. It isn’t impossible (see: Carlton a fortnight ago) but with the Suns, it will be an unequivocally mammoth test in their 2020 success thus far.
Last week: 2
It was the first defeat of Collingwood’s year, and a defeat made even more bitter with the loss of Jeremy Howe. Collingwood have more than enough defensive strength to cover, but he is undoubtedly a big loss.
Last week: 5
Ten players over the age of 29, 31 points up in the final term. The latter is a remarkable statistic, the former is a statistic that they almost ballsed up. So good for much of the night before an almost impressive capitulation, they were saved by the bell.
Last week: 8
Perhaps their best game of the year, and reminiscent of last year’s awesome preliminary final, they emerged victorious. The bookies have reacted by making them the (surprisingly heavy) favourites against the Hawks next weekend, to which I say: are you sure?
Last week: 11
This is a Carlton outfit that enjoys giving their fans cardiac issues, no doubt. I rewarded a few teams last week with big rises, and it’s the Blues and their Moorabbin cousins (two positions below) in the Saints that are rewarded this week.
Last week: 9
I mean, it was vastly better effort than last week, but it got a little nervy at times in the final term. But two minutes of excitement did not make up for the snooze fest that was a majority of Geelong’s Sunday clash.
Last week: 14
Brilliant win, back-to-earth-loss, brilliant win. A symmetrical trio of weeks for the Saints. Saturday’s win over Richmond is maybe not quite as impressive as it could’ve been if Richmond were in their best form, but it’s an impressive scalp nonetheless.
Last week: 7
One of several teams that kept a game close but couldn’t clinch a victory. Victory wasn’t to be on Sunday. Not that it was even looking likely halfway through the final term: they were 31 points down at one point.
Last week: 6
Meh. Thirty-something points, in a loss, on prime time Thursday night. A fairly listless performance, not much else to say.
Last week: 16
Two in a row, and a deserved ranking rise. Many were bullish on the Doggies at the beginning of the year, but – and as proven in my positioning of them in this column this year – they got off to a slow start. Not so anymore. Thursday’s win again showcased their considerable talent, Marcus Bontempelli especially.
Last week: 10
They have a lot of similarities to their next opponent in West Coast: they’re a good (or great) team that is struggling badly. I’m not foolish enough to profess to know how to fix their ills, so I’ll fall back on the overtly simplistic phrase of “they need a win, and soon”. A blockbuster at Metricon against the Eagles awaits.
Last week: 15
The Bombers’ return to the ground this week ended up being a close-run loss to their arch rivals. Not ideal. But I can’t begrudge them too much: they did impress in clawing back the lead at times, and it’s difficult to properly criticise a one-point loss. Collingwood awaits.
Last week: 17
Only getting a push up the rankings because of WA’s general lack of footballing prowess of late. Contributed to a sluggish clash on Sunday before coming close to clinching it; basically a normal Melbourne game, then.
Last week: 13
My Dockers are a ridiculously frustrating team this year. They do show plenty – as evidenced by the fact they haven’t really been blown out – but the last term of Saturday’s game disappointingly didn’t showcase any evidence that they wanted to win. Nat Fyfe’s injury is a potentially massive blow.
Last week: 12
They’re in strife. I’ll paraphrase a line I saw mentioned on The Roar during the weekend: West Coast fans have got a lot of success out of this squad, and not making finals this year won’t be the be all or end all. But jeez, next week’s clash against Richmond will be intriguing.
Last week: 18
They were fortunate in that they faced a ridiculously inaccurate Brisbane outfit. They were unfortunate in that they remain a very, very poor team.