• Six things we learned from round eight
• After the siren: The flag race is over but is Monday night footy dead?
• Around the state leagues: Eagle mids rising while Beams returns
The first of the bye rounds is over and NAB AFL Fantasy coaches are breathing a sigh of relief knowing that the stars from Adelaide, Collingwood, Geelong, Gold Coast and North Melbourne will return next week.
As predicted, it was a pretty tough week with around 1,600 a decent points total.
Having to play a range of players that usually make up our benches, it was always going to be tough for them to fill the shoes of the likes of Gary Ablett, Dane Swan and Steve Johnson. The Fantasy gods didn’t make it any easier with some late withdrawals, substitutions and injuries to bring those projected scores down.
Sydney Swans v Hawthorn, SCGKicking off the round, star Swans recruit Lance Franklin (106) kicked two last-quarter goals to help his team to victory against his former club. After missing last week due to injury, the once popular forward’s ownership is down to just 11 per cent. Those who stuck with him were rewarded after he got it together in the last quarter to be one of seven Swans to score a Fantasy ton.
WATCH: Lance Franklin's eventful Friday night
FWD/MID Luke Parker (121) continues to reward coaches that took the punt on him. He is now the second highest averaging forward this season.
Last week we saw a dozen Hawks score more than 100 Fantasy points. This week, there were none.
Jarryd Roughead (92)kicked three goals to top score for the visitors but the AFL's Match Review Panel has offered him a one-week suspension for rough conduct which could see him miss round 10 after Hawthorn's bye.
WATCH: Charged - did the Match Review Panel get it right in round eight?
Fellow rookie midfielder Mitch Hallahan (79) also produced at an important time, collecting 25 disposals.
Coaches that brought in midfielders Jake Lloyd (19) and Billy Hartung (26) coming off their 100-plus scores last week would have been disappointed with the two starting in the green vest.
DEF/MID Luke Hodge was a late withdrawal due to hamstring tightness.
Port Adelaide v Fremantle, Adelaide OvalIn the Power’s three-goal win, Kane Mitchell (113) made his mark in his first game of the season. A popular rookie pick last year, the midfielder finished with 20 disposals, five marks, eight tackles and two goals, performing well above his starting price which was severely affected by multiple substitutions last season.
Consistent midfielders Ollie Wines (112), Brad Ebert (109) and Kane Cornes (106) worked hard throughout as Port Adelaide took the four points against its more fancied opponents.
In-form FWD/MID Robbie Gray (99) looked to be having a very quiet game with just five disposals and 17 Fantasy points at half-time. He finished with 30 touches and smashed through his breakeven to head towards another price increase.
Port’s ruckman Matthew Lobbe was a late withdrawal, meaning Aaron Sandilands (97) was able to win the hit-outs with 41.
Midfielders Nat Fyfe (130), Tendai Mzungu (114) and David Mundy (108) led the way for Fremantle.
Brisbane Lions v Essendon, GabbaIn a tight tussle at the Gabba, Jobe Watson (149) finishing with 35 disposals, seven marks, nine tackles and a goal saw a welcomed return to form after failing to score a Fantasy ton since round two.
Lion Tom Rockliff (147) was Calvin’s second choice for captain this round and you would have been stoked if you whacked the ‘C’ on him. Week in, week out the midfielder gets the job done and Saturday was no different as he collected 35 disposals and laid 11 tackles.
The No.1 captain choice from the pirate, Brent Stanton (107), wasn’t looking that great at three-quarter time when he was sitting on 59 points. In true Stanton form, he finished the game strongly with plenty of mark-kick combos to help him to a respectable score as skipper.
Dyson Heppell (127), Brendon Goddard (126) and Patrick Ryder (113) were outstanding as the Bombers came from behind to snatch the win.
Forward Marco Paparone (99) had his best game in two seasons at the Lions collecting 29 disposals while Pearce Hanley (90) returned from injury with 27 disposals.
Paul Chapman (96) once again performed well but he could miss next week's match, leading into the Bombers' round 10 bye, after being offered a one-week ban by the MRP. Jackson Merrett (37) was a popular inclusion early in the season after a fast start, but his price will be well under $400K now and it’s time to move him on if you can.
The starting substitutes were Nick Robertson (10) and Kurt Aylett (28). Both players’ ownership has increased recently.
Melbourne v Western Bulldogs, MCGTom Liberatore (146) must have some kind of Fantasy record. He has now scored more than 140 points against the Demons in all three games that he’s played them in his career. A huge tackle count of 14 helped him to top Fantasy billing in the match.
Finally Ryan Griffen (113) has pumped out his first ton of the season despite receiving attention from Jack Grimes (40). More than half of his points came from the 15 tackles he laid. He’s now bottomed out in price and at just over $400K, he looks to be a great fallen premium option after his bye.
Only 22 per cent of teams still have Dom Tyson (117). Most moved him on, but for those who kept the faith, the cash cow continues to deliver on the scoreboard and with his price increases. The midfielder finished with 27 disposals and two goals.
With a huge amount of stoppages, ruckmen Will Minson (112) and Mark Jamar (107) both had their best Fantasy games of the year. They managed 40 and 53 hit-outs respectively.
First-round draft pick Christian Salem (39) once again started as the substitute for Melbourne and failed to reach his breakeven. He is now at around $200K and if we are confident he can avoid the vest, he may be a solid downgrade option.
West Coast v Greater Western Sydney, Patersons StadiumOver in the west, Josh Kennedy (160) booted 11 goals for his second-best career Fantasy score in the Eagles’ big win. Kennedy's previous highest was 177 when he kicked 10 goals against the Western Bulldogs in 2011.
WATCH: Josh Kennedy's perfect 11 against the Giants
WATCH: Eagle LeCras in the book for hit on Hoskin-Elliott
After a slow start to the season, Scott Selwood (129) laid ten tackles to help him to his first Fantasy ton since round one. Priced at under $450K, he is a fallen premium who might be a solid midfield selection post-bye.
Toby Greene (109) still managed to rack up 33 disposals while tagging Luke Shuey (82) to be the highest scoring Giant, while Selwood ran with Callan Ward (101).
Gaining DPP status this week, Eagle Xavier Ellis (29) started as substitute. The DEF/MID was returning from a calf injury and played just over a quarter of football, falling well below his breakeven of 60. Jed Lamb (43) wore the green vest for the Giants but came on early due to an ankle injury to Nick Haynes (8) in the first quarter.
St Kilda v Carlton, Etihad StadiumKicking the first goal of the game, Kade Simpson (145) enjoyed an epic first quarter that set up his night. The defender made Etihad Stadium his own as he gathered 24 kicks, 12 handballs and took 10 marks.
The number one draft picks, Bryce Gibbs (131) and Marc Murphy (120) found plenty of the ball finishing with 38 and 32 disposals respectively - though Murphy could find himself in trouble for a bump on Nick Riewoldt.
WATCH: More work ahead for Match Review Panel after spate of clashes on Monday night
FWD/MID Jack Billings (77) kicked two goals to smash through his breakeven of 15.
Another disappointing game from Dale Thomas (48) will probably spell the end of his tenure in quite a few of the 30,077 Fantasy sides that have the former Magpie in their midfield. The timing is right with Carlton having the bye this week.
How did the Traders go in round eight?Roy nailed the first week of the byes. His team destROY finished on 1,748 points thanks to selecting Tom Rockliff as captain and being able to field 19 players. He’s already playing it down because next round looks to be a different story.
My Warne Dawgs ended up on 1,605 points thanks to a fantastic effort from Kade Simpson in the last match of the round. Pleasingly, my ranking held firm.
Fielding 20 players, Calvin was stoked at the start of the round but ended up with eight players scoring fewer than 50 points including three that wore substitute vests. The Calvinators finished on 1,501.
We have a quick turnaround this week due to the Thursday night Adelaide v Collingwood game. There will be a partial lockout from the start of the match until the normal Friday night lockout at 7:50pm AEST.
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