PICTURE the scenario.
Four wannabe list managers – AFL.com.au reporters Cal Twomey, Marc McGowan, Mitch Cleary and Riley Beveridge – with the chance to pick from every active AFL footballer this year.
>> See the full draft order at the bottom
That ruled out the likes of Alex Rance, Dayne Beams, Ben Jacobs, Willie Rioli and Charlie Curnow but left plenty of talent to choose from.
The draft rules were simple: a randomised 'snake' order (the side with pick four also had selection five and so on), where every team must be balanced and have 22 players.
>> Who has the best team? VOTE in the poll below
It's not about building a team for the future but rather for a game this weekend, so advanced age and potential were irrelevant.
Who will be crowned the game's most valuable player?
B: Jeremy Howe (pick 65), Robbie Tarrant (48), Brad Sheppard (56)
HB: Nick Vlastuin (57), Harris Andrews (16), Zac Williams (49)
C: Jack Macrae (32), Marcus Bontempelli (9), Josh Kelly (17)
HF: Michael Walters (24), Jack Darling (33), Isaac Heeney (41)
F: Robbie Gray (64), Lance Franklin (8), Aaron Naughton (72)
Foll: Brodie Grundy (1), Scott Pendlebury (25), Luke Shuey (40)
I/C: Kane Lambert (73), Steele Sidebottom (80), Chad Wingard (81), Jack Crisp (88)
Given quality midfielders were still going to be available later, I wanted to fill the key position stocks straight away and went Grundy, Franklin and Andrews with early picks. The starting midfield know how to perform on the big stage and will be complemented by outside users Kelly and Macrae who will do as they please. Howe could be the best third tall defender in the game and will be able to attack alongside Williams, given Vlastuin and Sheppard can lock down. Gray and Walters are as dangerous as any small forwards, while Naughton, Heeney and Darling give us dominance in the air as Buddy just does Buddy things.
Best pick: Steele Sidebottom could be the most versatile midfielder in the game and having him come off the bench is a luxury I never thought I'd be able to afford.
The one I missed: I love Nick Haynes' aerial ability and was about to take him at pick 64 to play a key role in defence before Marc swooped. Howe isn't a bad replacement.
B: Nick Haynes (63), Steven May (71), James Sicily (23)
HB: Shannon Hurn (15), Michael Hurley (42), Bachar Houli (50)
C: Tim Kelly (18), Ben Cunnington (58), Bradley Hill (55)
HF: Dayne Zorko (34), Joe Daniher (26), Devon Smith (66)
F: Jade Gresham (47), Tom Lynch (7), Charlie Cameron (31)
R: Max Gawn (2), Patrick Cripps (10), Dion Prestia (39)
I/C: Shaun Higgins (74), Darcy Gardiner (79), Jesse Hogan (82), Taylor Adams (87)
My whole strategy was to pick a team that fits all scenarios, was versatile, had different strengths and kicked the Sherrin well. There's a clear gap between the top two rucks and the rest, so Gawn was a no-brainer. This team hurts you on the inside (Cripps, Prestia, Cunnington) then blitzes you on the outside (Hill, Kelly, Higgins), while Zorko and Smith pour on the pressure in attack. No defence could stop Lynch, Daniher and Hogan aerially, while Cameron and Gresham will feast on any crumbs. Intercepting (Sicily, Haynes) and lockdown (Hurley, May) roles are also accounted for in defence, as well as great kicks in Hurn, Sicily and Houli. Adams is my defensive midfielder.
Best pick: James Sicily at No.23. A magnificent kick, can play tall or small down back or even go forward, and suits the modern game with his intercepting talents.
The one I missed: There were two Eagles I really wanted but just missed out on: Jamie Cripps (Riley) and Brad Sheppard (Mitch). Sheppard hurt most but Brisbane's Darcy Gardiner was a worthy replacement to play on talls and smalls.
B: Dylan Grimes (43), Phil Davis (62), Dane Rampe (35)
HB: Rory Laird (51), Jeremy McGovern (6), Sam Docherty (59)
C: Lachie Neale (27), Dustin Martin (3), Stephen Coniglio (19)
HF: Toby Greene (30), Ben Brown (22), Tim Taranto (67)
F: Jamie Cripps (46), Jack Riewoldt (11), Tom Papley (54)
FOLL: Todd Goldstein (86), Tom Mitchell (14), Clayton Oliver (38)
I/C: Josh Dunkley (70), Luke Parker (75), Jake Lloyd (78), Jake Stringer (83)
Clearly, you take the best available with your first selection. Dustin Martin is the best available in the competition and it was a shock he was still on the board at pick No.3. From there, I built out my spine. Jeremy McGovern is the game's best defender, while Jack Riewoldt is a dual premiership player and a three-time Coleman Medal winner. The midfield is deep and features Martin alongside Stephen Coniglio, Lachie Neale, Tom Mitchell and Clayton Oliver. There's plenty of spark in the forward line with Toby Greene, Tom Papley and Jamie Cripps – plus Ben Brown is a consistent goalkicker. Meanwhile, the backline is ultra-reliable with club leaders (Phil Davis, Dane Rampe), premiership players (Dylan Grimes, McGovern) and All-Australians (Rory Laird, Sam Docherty) everywhere. This is clearly the best and most balanced team.
Best pick: Lachie Neale is among the best and most consistent ball winners in the game as an All-Australian and a three-time best and fairest winner at two different clubs. Building out my midfield depth wasn't a top priority, but to secure him with pick No.27 was a steal.
The one I missed: If I'm being completely honest, there weren't too many. I had Elliot Yeo down as my next pick at No.30, but Cal took him. However, I was pretty rapt to have Toby Greene available there anyway. I would have liked Jeremy Cameron to still be available at my second pick, but again Cal got in ahead of me. Instead, I opted to focus on the backline and took the best defender in the competition in Jeremy McGovern.
FB: Tom Stewart (21), Daniel Talia (44), Neville Jetta (52)
HB: Adam Saad (53), Darcy Moore (36), Brodie Smith (69)
C: Andrew Gaff (28), Nat Fyfe (4), Lachie Whitfield (13)
HF: Adam Treloar (61), Jeremy Cameron (5), Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti (60)
FF: Gary Ablett (68), Tom Hawkins (45), Jordan De Goey (20)
R: Nic Naitanui (37), Patrick Dangerfield (12), Elliot Yeo (29)
I/C: Trent Cotchin (76), Rory Sloane (77), Jamie Elliott (84), Jason Johannisen (85)
With back-to-back picks at No.4 and 5 I wanted a champion midfielder and star key forward. These are irreplaceable picks, and Fyfe is arguably the game's best player. Two Brownlow Medals is no mean feat, and then following him with last year's Coleman medallist in Cameron got me off to a flying start. I've got the two best wingmen in the competition – Gaff and Whitfield – while Dangerfield, Yeo, Treloar, Cotchin and Sloane complete the deepest midfield. The forward line has all bases covered with key targets (Cameron and Hawkins), the best medium forward in the game (De Goey), spark (McDonald-Tipungwuti) and experience (Ablett). My defence is an attacking group with Stewart, Saad and Moore backing themselves, but Talia and Jetta can do stopping jobs. There isn't a weak link in this line-up.
Best pick: It's easy to pick at the top, but the best talent spotters do their greatest work with late selections. Drafting Treloar at pick 61 is one of the great steals. The Collingwood gun midfielder was the competition's leading disposal winner in 2019 and can also slot into a half-forward flank as part of my brilliant midfield rotation.
The one I missed: I wanted to settle my midfield with a couple of strong early picks, so chose Yeo at No.29 – my eighth pick overall. But Toby Greene was in my mind and I was hoping he would get through to my next selection at No.36. It wasn't to be, as he was picked the following choice. He would have been a perfect foil for Cameron and De Goey.
1. MC: Brodie Grundy (Collingwood)
2. MM: Max Gawn (Melbourne)
3. RB: Dustin Martin (Richmond)
4. CT: Nat Fyfe (Fremantle)
5. CT: Jeremy Cameron (GWS Giants)
6. RB: Jeremy McGovern (West Coast)
7. MM: Tom Lynch (Richmond)
8. MC: Lance Franklin (Sydney)
9. MC: Marcus Bontempelli (Western Bulldogs)
10. MM: Patrick Cripps (Carlton)
11. RB: Jack Riewoldt (Richmond)
12. CT: Patrick Dangerfield (Geelong)
13. CT: Lachie Whitfield (GWS Giants)
14. RB: Tom Mitchell (Hawthorn
15. MM: Shannon Hurn (West Coast)
16. MC: Harris Andrews (Brisbane)
17. MC: Josh Kelly (GWS Giants)
18. MM: Tim Kelly (West Coast)
19. RB: Stephen Coniglio (GWS Giants)
20. CT: Jordan De Goey (Collingwood)
21. CT: Tom Stewart (Geelong)
22. RB: Ben Brown (North Melbourne)
23. MM: James Sicily (Hawthorn)
24. MC: Michael Walters (Fremantle)
25. MC: Scott Pendlebury (Collingwood)
26. MM: Joe Daniher (Essendon)
27. RB: Lachie Neale (Brisbane)
28. CT: Andrew Gaff (West Coast)
29. CT: Elliot Yeo (West Coast)
30. RB: Toby Greene (GWS Giants)
31. MM: Charlie Cameron (Brisbane)
32. MC: Jack Macrae (Western Bulldogs)
33. MC: Jack Darling (West Coast)
34. MM: Dayne Zorko (Brisbane)
35. RB: Dane Rampe (Sydney)
36. CT: Darcy Moore (Collingwood)
37. CT: Nic Naitanui (West Coast)
38. RB: Clayton Oliver (Melbourne)
39. MM: Dion Prestia (Richmond)
40. MC: Luke Shuey (West Coast)
41. MC: Isaac Heeney (Sydney)
42. MM: Michael Hurley (Essendon)
43. RB: Dylan Grimes (Richmond)
44. CT: Daniel Talia (Adelaide)
45. CT: Tom Hawkins (Geelong)
46. RB: Jamie Cripps (West Coast)
47. MM: Jade Gresham (St Kilda)
48. MC: Robbie Tarrant (North Melbourne)
49. MC: Zac Williams (GWS Giants)
50. MM: Bachar Houli (Richmond)
51. RB: Rory Laird (Adelaide)
52. CT: Neville Jetta (Melbourne)
53. CT: Adam Saad (Essendon)
54. RB: Tom Papley (Sydney)
55. MM: Bradley Hill (St Kilda)
56. MC: Brad Sheppard (West Coast)
57. MC: Nick Vlastuin (Richmond)
58. MM: Ben Cunnington (North Melbourne)
59. RB: Sam Docherty (Carlton)
60. CT: Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti (Essendon)
61. CT: Adam Treloar (Collingwood)
62. RB: Phil Davis (GWS Giants)
63. MM: Nick Haynes (GWS Giants)
64. MC: Robbie Gray (Port Adelaide)
65. MC: Jeremy Howe (Collingwood)
66. MM: Devon Smith (Essendon)
67. RB: Tim Taranto (GWS Giants)
68. CT: Gary Ablett (Geelong)
69. CT: Brodie Smith (Adelaide)
70. RB: Josh Dunkley (Western Bulldogs)
71. MM: Steven May (Melbourne)
72. MC: Aaron Naughton (Western Bulldogs)
73. MC: Kane Lambert (Richmond)
74. MM: Shaun Higgins (North Melbourne)
75. RB: Luke Parker (Sydney)
76. CT: Trent Cotchin (Richmond)
77. CT: Rory Sloane (Adelaide)
78. RB: Jake Lloyd (Sydney)
79. MM: Darcy Gardiner (Brisbane)
80. MC: Steele Sidebottom (Collingwood)
81. MC: Chad Wingard (Hawthorn)
82. MM: Jesse Hogan (Fremantle)
83. RB: Jake Stringer (Essendon)
84. CT: Jamie Elliott (Collingwood)
85. CT: Jason Johannisen (Western Bulldogs)
86. RB: Todd Goldstein (North Melbourne)
87. MM: Taylor Adams (Collingwood)
88. MC: Jack Crisp (Collingwood)