Dream Team - Bargain Players

The AFL Dream Team Season (the only Dream Team season of note, there are not enough stats for fair scoring in anything else) is fast approaching and the most important thing in getting a good team is your first 30 players picked. A good side will have a mix of stars, bargains and rookies. Anyone can pick good stars (Dean Cox) so I will run through my tips in the bargain and rookie areas before the season starts. The rookies will be left until atleast preliminary teams are announced for round 1, because you will want rookies that are playing most games.

If anyone doubts my Dream Team qualifications, I came in the top 5 for Rd 22 last year, and would have won the round and prize if I didn't have a 0 scoring Matthew Pavlich in my team (I checked those above me and was only around 20 points behind those teams with 22 playing). I aim to go a little better this year and win a round.

So, with no further ado,
Crowmaniac's Bargain Picks for DT 2009:
Traditionally, defenders are the hardest picks to get right, and this year is no exception. Try to find players who will move from stoppers to rebounders, or those who are young and likely to improve significantly. For my team, I will be trying to get more stars into my defence this year, becuase the bargain crop looks pretty woeful. Still, I'll try to find some value for you.

Shannon Hurn ($197,400) (WCE):
Played the whole 2007 season but found himself on the fringe in 2008. Should play all of this season barring injury and will continue to improve, playing as a rebounding 1/4 back in a team that is expected to struggle and play young players.
Trent Croad ($182,400) (Haw):
Has played more defensively in previous years, reducing his output in DT games. However, with the development of the Hawks' younger backs, may be given the chance to move to a Bock-like rebounder again. Even if he doesn't, should still play all games and average atleast 60.
Matt Maguire ($145,300) (StK):
Is coming back from an injury derailed 2008 season. Should play CHB and get some cheap stats. Won't score big, but should be a consistant 50-60 average and play most games.
Scott Selwood ($207,600) (WCE):
Young, but showed promising signs last year. Should step up to play most games this year, as a def/mid role.
Andrew Raines ($188,100) (Ric):
In 06/07 averaged 18 and 19 disposals per game. Had his 08 season derailed and only played 2 games.Probably the likely highest scoring bargain so far in this list and so he should be in your team (assuming he plays Rd 1)
Andrew McLeod ($318,100) (Ade):
Barely counts as a bargain, but should still play well, rebounding from an Adelaide defence that likes to share the ball around. Only concern is age, which may be a factor in him missing some games.

A veritable array of talent is cheap in DT 09 that will play in the middle. It may be worth playing a cheaper midfield to strengthen up another area of your side. Not as many listed as for defenders, because they could all slot into your team easily. Also, good midfield rookies tend to be better than any other position (Selwood, Palmer, Dalziell etc.)

Daniel Kerr ($339,200) (WCE):
Like McLeod, barely counts as a bargain but is one of the best in the competition on the field and is available for $100K less than similar class players.
Paul Hasleby ($257,800) (Fre):
Is a seriously good in-and-under midfielder coming back from injury. Should be as good as your stars if he can keep his body right.
Brent Reilly ($284,000) (Ade):
A very capable midfielder who will alternate with rebounding from 1/2 back this year. Is capable of performing well above his price range if he can keep his body right.
Mark Coughlin ($176,400) (Ric):
A somewhat risky pick, despite his talent. But Coughlin is a class player and, if fit would be priced at $150K more than this.

Your second ruckman to Dean Cox should be a bargain type player. There are several worth looking at in the upper bargain range.

Kepler Bradley ($300,700) (Fre):
Also selectable as a forward, but good 2nd rucks are much harder to find. Kepler is now, with the departure of Warnock the obvious choice as 2nd Ruck to Sandilands at Freo. This would normally be a reason not to pick a player, but Kepler is the typoe of player who should hold down a key position and rotate into the ruck for 20-30 mins per game. Alsmost everyone has given up on him as a hack, so there shouldn't be too many who pick him either.

Justin Koshitzke ($319,700) (StK):
Not the player who he could have been, but still a solid utility key position player who will pinch hit in the ruck. Also selectable as a forward and should average 70 or so.

Hamish McIntosh ($296,600) (Ka):
Had a poor year last year, but starred in 07. Is better than his 08 form would show, but perhaps not as good as Kossie.

Ben Hudson ($263,600) (WB):
Appears to be dropping off towardsb the end of his career, but will still play every game as No. 1 ruckman. Main problem in DT is his refusal to kick the ball, opting for the cheap handpass instead.

Kurt Tippett ($191,300) (Ad):
Showed promise last year and with the Crows lack of quality up forward, should be picked for almost all games up there. Also selectable as a forward.

Travis Cloke ($334,000) (Col):
Good key forward who continues to improve. Plays a lead-out role, so he should get plenty of the ball and marks without too much attention.

Travis Varcoe ($271,300) (Gee):
Small forward/midfielder who should get more minutes this year and average over 70. Plays in a team that will share the ball, so should get cheap marks and kicks in forward 1/2 despite the more zonal defences this year.

Jack Riewoldt ($257,800) (Ric):
It may be too early for the brother of Nick, but he has abiltiy and should get more opportunities with Richmond needing to find a replacement for an aging Richo.

Scott Lucas ($222,800) (Ess):
Aging key forward, but should still play most games and is signifiacntly better than his price suggests. Will get picked in a lot of teams, he should be in yours too.

Hayden Skipworth ($196,600) (Ess):
Mature aged re-draftee who had heaps of games with Adelaide before being delisted. Despite what BS reckons, should be a very capable player who will play most games and get a lot of cheap touches for the 'Dons.

Trent Hentshell ($122,700) (Ade):
Was injured and has been absent from the AFL from the past 2 years. Howeverr, he played SANFL and reserves SANFL for the 2nd 1/2 of last year, and seems to have his body mostly working again. Should be a capable buy, and is at practically a rookie price. Get him.

So theres the run-down on your bargain buys for DT season 09. Check back here for a shorter run-down on the rookies you should be considering after 1st round teams are announced (hopefully that will be a bit earlier than the couple of hours before the DT deadline like last year, otherwise you might not hear from me at all on rookies).

Finally, I found a great run-down on the IPL teams for the coming season. It has prospective player lineups and the major team changes from last year's season.

More finally, if you want to compete with me in DT and compare teams, join my league number 135697 from the AFL Dream Team site
I will probably mention the league on this blog, and it has been started expressly for the readers of this blog. That means you. Yes you, sitting infront of the computer there.

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