Lachie Neale, Nick Daicos and Marcus Bontempelli. Pictures: AFL Photos

THIS year's Brownlow Medal count is set to be a thriller.

With Collingwood gun Nick Daicos sidelined for the final three games of the home and away season, the race will be on to catch him in the last few rounds.

BROWNLOW PREDICTOR Who won the race?

The chasing pack, led by Marcus Bontempelli, Zak Butters, Christian Petracca and Lachie Neale, did their chances no harm late in the season.

Bontempelli, who finished second in the AFL Coaches Association's champion player of the year award, could poll in each of the last four rounds despite the Western Bulldogs missing the finals.

The winner of the coaches' award, Butters also impressed in the final rounds, although teammate Connor Rozee also finished the season strongly.

While Petracca enjoyed another All-Australian season, the Melbourne star may be hurt in the Brownlow count by spending more time forward later in the campaign.

36:30's Brownlow Predictor, which sees reporters place 3-2-1 votes after every game, had Neale coming out on top with 32 votes, ahead of Daicos (30), Butters (29) and Bontempelli (28).

Neale missed All-Australian selection but finished fifth in voting for the coaches' award.

Interestingly,'s Brownlow Predictor has a 22-vote gap between Neale and the next best Lion – Charlie Cameron (10). That is the biggest gap between first and second of any club.

Neale, the 2020 winner, is 27th all-time for Brownlow votes and 10th for the most three-vote games, making him a contender once more in 2023.

Brownlow predictor

32 - Lachie Neale (Brisbane)
30 - Nick Daicos (Collingwood)
29 - Zak Butters (Port Adelaide)
28 - Marcus Bontempelli (Western Bulldogs)
27 - Tim Taranto (Richmond)
25 - Jordan Dawson (Adelaide)
25 - Christian Petracca (Melbourne)