ONLY one Sun reached a triple-figure average last season in Noah Anderson (MID, $907,000), so that tells me there could be some value on the Gold Coast considering there are multiple players I believe can reach the mark.
Could the new coaching regime unleash Matt Rowell (MID, $830,000) to the ball-winning beast we saw at the beginning of his career when he looked destined for Pig status after just a handful of games?
He certainly reminded us last year that he has the potential to play at the elite level with seven hundreds, which included an impressive ceiling of 142 from 29 disposals, 17 tackles and a goal.
Lock them in
At his best, Noah Anderson (MID, $907,000) can score with the elite as we saw on several occasions in his fourth season on his way to a career-high average of 101. His ceiling is eye catching with three scores over 130, which included a season-high 159 which came from 38 disposals, three marks, 10 tackles and a goal. He has improved his average every year to date and if he can find a greater level of consistency under Damien Hardwick, he has the tools to become an uber premium. As it stands, the five scores in the 80s and three in the 70s is what is holding him back from that status. I think he has the ability to push 110.
Track their pre-season
After two dominant seasons averaging 122 and 110, inspirational midfielder Touk Miller (MID, $868,000) was struck down with injury in round six after averaging 104 across the first five rounds, which included four hundreds, highlighted by 120. He returned in round 17 and averaged a solid 99 for the remainder of the season with an impressive end to the year, notching up back-to-back hundreds, topped by a 29-disposal and eight-tackle performance for 118. If he has an uninterrupted pre-season and the role is there, Touk is up to 20 points under-priced given his injured score of 48 is factored into the equation.
It took until round 15 of 2023, but Fantasy coaches finally got to see what they had been waiting for with Sam Flanders (MID/FWD, $809,000) unleashed in his natural role and the results spoke for themselves. Following a stop-start beginning to his season where he managed four games at an average of 51 prior to the bye, he showed what he's got in the second half of the year with an average of 105, which included just one score below 90, six hundreds and a high of 146 from 29 disposals, 12 marks, five tackles and two goals. Given the lack of top end options with forward status, Flanders should be at the top of your watch list given he is priced at an average of 90.
Jake Rogers (MID, $261,000) is a piglet in the making with his work ethic, skills, poise and pressure giving him every chance to debut early in the season. Given he is a graduate from the Suns Academy, he already had prior experience training with the team and despite it being tough to work his way straight into the strong midfield mix, his skillset is easily transferable to the forward line which is where he may get early opportunity. He had no trouble finding the ball in the Coates Talent League, averaging an impressive 26 disposal and six tackles for an average of 95.
The Suns managed only nine wins last season and the instant improvement with the new regime should correlate with an increase in Fantasy numbers across the board. Could we even see the likes of Brandon Ellis (MID, $682,000) return to the days of a triple-figure average after being reunited with his old mentor that oversaw him average 103 in 2015? Bit of a stretch there hey…
Custom stat star
After missing 2022, Ben King (FWD, $412,000) did a great job to play 20 games, albeit at an average of just 46. If your league decides to show a bit more love to the goalkickers, however, King's 40 goals for the season, which included two bags of four and two of five while hitting the scoreboard on most occasions elevates his relevance given he is set for a career year.
Rory Atkins (DEF, $674,000) and Brayden Fiorini (MID, $639,000). What more do I have to say other than the 'Rat Pasta' combo absolutely derailed the season for many coaches last year. Their best is outstanding but unfortunately, their alternative is devastating. Atkins was at his best mopping up across half-back as we saw with some great contributions in that role which included 100, 102, 103 and 122 from the cheap veteran, but coaches also experienced the flipside, copping 30, 31 and 56 when they needed him most. When Fiorini had a friendly role and didn't find himself stuck out on a wing, his best was unsurprisingly elite, highlighted by scores of 112 and 115. Unfortunately, he also had scores of 28, 33, 33 and 40.