PREMIERSHIP Tiger Jacob Townsend has been delisted by Richmond but has been offered the chance to remain at the club as a rookie.
The 25-year-old fell out of the AFL side three times this season before breaking his lower left leg in the final VFL game of the year and requiring surgery.
While the Tigers are prepared for the chance he could join with a rival club as a delisted free agent before the November 23 NAB AFL Rookie Draft, they have committed to him if a new opportunity doesn't eventuate.
"We would love for Jacob to remain at Richmond and he knows there is a spot for him at the club," football manager Neil Balme said.
"He is well within his rights as a delisted free agent to look for new opportunities and should they arise, we will support his decision."
AFL.com.au reported earlier this week Townsend had met with Sydney and undergone a medical at the club last Friday.
Townsend told the website in Grand Final week he didn't want to leave the Tigers after playing in their 2017 premiership win, but he remained realistic about his future.
"I love Richmond so if there was a deal here I'd probably take it, I love all the boys and it's been pretty well documented how tight we are as a bunch," Townsend said on September 28.
"At the end of the day, you have to look after yourself but players are on AFL lists to play AFL footy and boys I'm pretty close mates with might have to change clubs for more opportunities,"
"That's just the industry."
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The Tigers have also delisted project tall Mabior Chol, although he too could be re-drafted as a rookie, and luckless midfielder Nathan Drummond.
Chol missed a large portion of his third season as a Tiger after breaking a bone in his foot at training in June.
He got back to play in the Tigers' one VFL final at the end of the season.
While he's been delisted for now, his time at the club may not be over with the club to keep the door ajar for him to be reinstated on the rookie list in the coming weeks.
"Mabior has shown promising signs over the past three seasons and the club will consider its options over the coming weeks," Balme said.
Drummond returned from his second knee reconstruction this season but was then hampered by repeated hamstring issues that eventually required reinforcement surgery.
He played just five games at AFL level after being drafted in the third round of the 2014 NAB AFL Draft.
"This was a difficult decision for the club to make. We have no doubt Nathan will forge a successful career in whichever path he decides to take," Balme said.
"I really feel for Nathan, he has had a rotten run with injuries.
"He has suffered two serious knee injuries since joining the AFL system and has struggled to consistently play football.
"He has always held his head high and been the ultimate professional, even when he was going through tough patches."
Drummond joins Reece Conca, Corey Ellis, Sam Lloyd, Anthony Miles and Tyson Stengle as players to depart Punt Road in recent weeks.