GEELONG vs RICHMOND

Gabba, 7.10pm AEST

MAIN SLATES:
$60,000 AUD on Draftstars ($15 entry, 125 max)
$5,000 USD on Draftkings ($12 entry, 14 max)
WEATHER: 17 degrees and showers, heavy rain earlier in the day.
BOOKIES: Geelong $1.65 favourites, 96.5 over/under.

CBA’s & ROLES

Stanley was a late out – which wasn’t a surprising move from Geelong – but what was surprising was that the man who replaced him in Jenkins was given the main ruck role over Blicavs, who has been a recognised ruckman in the past. Well, that’s actually not the full story; while Jenkins dwarfed his numbers in the CBA’s, they actually split the hitouts 50-50 through a key forward post (Blicavs didn’t play on the wing in this one). The Cats took the opportunity to actively rest a couple of their key stars in the thumping over Essendon, with Dangerfield (-38% CBA presence) and Duncan (just 68% TOG) taking it easy. The young bloods took the extra responsibility and ran with it, with Parfitt hitting season-highs in both TOG (86%) and CBA’s (72%) while Fogarty also enjoyed his heaviest midfield split this season with a CBA Rate of 0.84. Atkins snuck in a few more CBA cameos with both Selwood and Steven on the sidelines, while Menegola’s 115 AF came from a full-time wing role. All other roles as expected.

Lambert’s absence resulted in a more homogeneous role for Graham, playing on a wing full-time instead of his hybrid role from Round 14. Young midfielder Dow capitalised on the shuffle, at least opportunity-wise with 40% CBA presence – he certainly didn’t translate it to fantasy points with just 16 AF to his name at the final siren. Martin, Bolton and Cotchin are locked into that core and not much changes for them week-to-week at the moment, especially with midfielders in Prestia and Edwards absent. Soldo and Nankervis stepped on each other’s toes as they tend to do, both finishing with 32 AF in limited minutes as they rotated largely through the bench rather than the forward line. McIntosh was back onto a wing as predicted, which meant he was back into the 70’s and hence into winning DFS line-ups. Pickett (70 AF) rounded out the wing rotation with Higgins playing a HFF role. Dusty had all the midfield time he needed as mentioned above, but produced just 28 AF points as ex-teammate Conca destroyed him with a tight tag. Consistent roles elsewhere.

TEAMSHEETS

Geelong: Ratugolea, Tuohy INJenkins, Z Guthrie OUT

  • Ratugolea replaces Jenkins, which means we’re back to the Ratugolea/Blicavs ruck special we had in Rounds 8 and 9. They ran a 33/67 ruck split between them in those games respectively, with Blicavs “resting” on a wing and Esava up forward.
  • Tuohy replaces Zach Guthrie but will likely remain in his now-regular HFF role with the Cats going in defender-heavy last week.
  • No Steven or Selwood is great news for fringe MID’s like Parfitt, Fogarty and Atkins, although it’s important to remember that Dangerfield and Duncan were both managed in-game last week, so their midfield roles likely won’t be as prominent. 

Notable outs: Ablett, Steven, Stanley.

Richmond: Grimes, Ross, Lambert INHiggins, Broad, Dow OUT

  • Grimes replaces Broad in defence, L4L.
  • Ross replaces Dow as the last inside midfielder, L4L. He’s unlikely to receive heavy CBA’s with all of Dusty, Cotchin and Bolton fit and ahead of him in the pecking order, but he’s a high variance player who could always upswing with 30-40% CBA presence and a few lucky touches rotating through his HFF post. 
  • Lambert replaces Higgins, although will likely play at least half a game on the wing, which will be taken out of Pickett’s kitty. 
  • With 7 clear defenders named, McIntosh remains on a wing and needs to be considered in DFS once again.
  • The Soldo/Nankervis timeshare is getting less and less attractive as the Tigers tend towards the old method of rotating them through the bench rather than on-ground. The 67/33 split a couple of weeks ago evolved into a 55/45 split last time around, so it’s becoming more of a true timeshare. Concerning.
  • The Cats have only tagged once this year, so you’d be a brave guy or gal to predict a Dustin Martin tag here. But I wouldn’t be doing my job if I failed to mention that Fremantle proved that Gods can bleed through Conca’s efforts last week, so I wouldn’t be surprised if Geelong studied the vision and put it into practice.

Notable outs: Caddy, Astbury, Edwards, Prestia.

TRENDS

Geelong conceded the least points to GEN DEF’s over the last 5 rounds (-0.3)
Geelong conceded the 3rd-least points to KEY FWD’s over the last 5 rounds (-5.6)
Geelong conceded the least points to GEN FWD’s over the last 5 rounds (-4.2)
Geelong conceded the 2nd-least points to MID’s over the last 5 rounds (-3.5)

Richmond conceded the least points to KEY DEF’s over the last 5 rounds (-10.5)
Richmond conceded the 3rd-most points to GEN DEF’s over the last 5 rounds (+10.5)
Richmond conceded the most points to MID’s over the last 5 rounds (+13.6)
Richmond conceded the 3rd-most points to RUC’s over the last 5 rounds (+9.3)

HISTORY

Dangerfield 99, 162, 128, 75 (heavy forward roles)
Duncan – DNP, 144, 99, 70
Stewart – 66, 105, DNP
Guthrie40, 104, 94, DNP (limited TOG, although that’s normal for him these days)
Menegola 64, DNP, 112, 103 (HFF role)

Houli128, 105, DNP, DNP (11 marks, 8 marks)
Martin – 97, 102, 114, 76 (no tags)
Cotchin – 64, 73, 105, 78
Soldo – 75, 75, DNP, DNP
Lambert – 86, DNP, 120, 89 (midfield roles)

PLAYS

BEST PICK: Tom Stewart – D – $14,430 DS 

DEF’s against Richmond has been a lasting trend for years now, with the stats of backmen  juiced up primarily through the switches that Richmond happily concede with their uniquely deep zone defense. That’s music to the ears of Stewart, who averages the most uncontested marks in the league this year and steamrolls into this clash with scores of 102 and 99 in his last couple.

He’s reasonably pricey here so the field might skimp on him more than they should, so I’d be forcing Stewart into as many teams as you can to take advantage of the clear DvP exploitation play on this slate. 

BEST VALUE: Lachie Fogarty – M – $9,070 DS 

While he didn’t quite put it together with his fantasy score of 51 AF, a season-high 56% of CBA attended and without a significant change to Geelong’s midfield personnel is too pressing to ignore. While I think that figure will drop with Duncan (wing) and Dangerfield (guts) likely to put more of a strain on the midfield group in general, he’ll still earn more than enough opportunities to reach value at just $9k. 

Fogarty averages 66 AF this year in the 4 games where he’s been gifted CBA’s, and that’s more than enough for me.  

BEST RUCK: Mark Blicavs – D – $11,760 DS 

You can throw a blanket over Soldo, Nankervis and Ratugolea at their respective prices – one of them will upswing and we have no idea who, so just split up your entries between the trio. I’d lean towards Soldo (for a heavier ruck split and runs on the board) and Ratugolea (a handful of hitouts will bump his hitouts and tackle numbers, while he can still kick a sausage roll or two resting up forward) over Nank, but without any confidence.

So he’s not a RUC on Draftstars but history says that Blicavs will play significant time in the ruck here. Without either Stanley or Fort in the team this season he’s averaged 19 hitouts and 73 AF and, with a lowest score of 62 over his last 8 games across multiple roles, his floor is assured. A great Cash play tonight. 

BEST STAT: Sam Menegola – M – $15,740 DS 

Do you think the Cats will win?

Menegola has been monstrous lately, averaging 91 over the past 5 weeks and showing off a hefty ceiling with scores of 106, 111 and 115 this season. But, like most wingmen, he’s often the cherry on top of the cake rather than the sponge itself. Statistically, this manifests for Menegola with an average of 92 in Geelong wins this season, but that drops dramatically to just 54 per game in the Cats’ 4 losses.

So I ask again – do the Cats win tonight?

BEST RETHINK: Mitch Duncan – M – $16,660 DS

I’m tentatively optimistic with Mitch here, which is a combination of conflicting thought processes. Duncan has been actively managed by Geelong in recent weeks, playing limited TOG last week and unusually high forward-line minutes the previous two. 

So, does that mean he’s now cherry-ripe for a full hitout against a Premiership contender and the team he racked up 144 AF against last year?

Or does it mean that we should expect further bubble-wrapping of Duncan, limiting his ceiling and therefore his appeal as the most expensive player on the slate?

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