ADJUSTED rules help coaches field a competitive team during the bye rounds. For those with more than 18, it was nice to drop off some of the low scores from the rookies.
Unfortunately, for some, there were more low scores than expected in the first bye round.
While there were plenty of rookies who did step up in this time of need (see the Michael Barlow Medal votes below), there were plenty whose scores left a lot to be desired.
Some coaches rejoiced on Thursday night when teams were announced that some red dots had turned green. Jay Rantall (24) and Ronin O'Connor (20) subdued those who were initially stoked they had forced their way back into their respective teams. Riley Collier-Dawkins (29) had been posting solid numbers with 59 his lowest in his five previous outings while those holding Chad Warner (37) until his bye were left short-changed as his price took another hit.
The biggest decision coaches were faced with ahead of the first bye round was what to do with the injured Brodie Grundy.
Our beloved Ruck Pig hurt his neck in round 11 and was listed as 2-3 weeks. The competition was split with what to do with him in Fantasy Classic with 20.4k coaches deciding to offload him. 9.2k brought in Max Gawn (108), 5.9k selected Sean Darcy (93), 3.5k went with Callum Coleman-Jones (69) while Reilly O'Brien (111) was the ruck of choice for 2.4k.
O'Brien was the winner as he pocketed coaches $230k and was the top-scoring ruck of the round. That, together with Darcy's hamstring injury, made it a good call.
Fremantle experienced plenty of carnage in the final game of the round including Nat Fyfe (47) injuring his shoulder.
Round 13 will have just four teams with a bye (Brisbane, Carlton, Essendon and Western Bulldogs) as West Coast will play Richmond next week rather than in round 14 as initially fixtured.
There will be an adjustment to the number of trades that can be used in future rounds as round 14 will now have eight teams with a bye. More details on this in coming days.
Fantasy Pig of the week
Since round three, Darcy Parish (160) has averaged 123 and made more than $250k. On Saturday night in the Dreamtime in Perth game, he collected a club-record 44 disposals to add the Yiooken Trophy to the Anzac Day Medal he won in round six. With eight marks and five tackles also to his name, Parish's performance against the Tigers was the best of his 103-game career. Judging by his recent output, Fantasy coaches will be enjoying his numbers for years to come.
Saints duo Jack Steele (137) and Brad Crouch (131) put up their highest Fantasy scores of the season as did Rory Laird (131) who is averaging an impressive 106, the third best of all defenders. Marcus Bontempelli (125) has a run of eight tons in a row, but is still behind teammate Jack Macrae (114) who has posted 100-plus in every round. Finally, imagine what Jack Higgins (116) could have scored if he kicked straight? He finished with 1.6, so an extra 30 points went begging.
Top scorers - R12
- Darcy Parish 160
- Jack Steele 137
- Brad Crouch 131
- Rory Laird 131
- Sam Walsh 127
- Marcus Bontempelli 125
- Dom Sheed 123
- Paul Seedsman 121
- Paul Seedsman 120
- Christian Petracca 119
- Dayne Zorko 118
- Jack Higgins 116
- Ben Keays 115
- David Mundy 115
- Jack Macrae 114
- Kyle Langford 114
- Jack Crisp 113
- Zach Merrett 112
- Reilly O'Brien 111
- Jarryd Lyons 110
Cash cows of the round
The best player with a starting price under $270k will be awarded the Michael Barlow Medal as the best cash cow of the year.
The votes for round 12:
5 – Caleb Poulter (105) Collingwood, MID/FWD
Posted the second ton of his career thanks to 20 disposals and a game-high 10 marks in Collingwood's backs-against-the-wall win over the Crows. Averaging 76 for the year, Poulter could be 2021's best mid-season cash cow as he ticks his scoring along across all stat lines, including a fantastic goal this week.
4 – Nik Cox (104) Essendon, DEF/FWD
Patrolled the wing collecting 23 disposals, eight marks and a goal. Price heading back up.
3 – Deven Robertson (81) Brisbane Lions, MID/FWD
Eight tackles boosted his numbers this week. Still plenty of cash to make despite the upcoming bye.
2 – Harry Edwards (78) West Coast Eagles, DEF
Considering he scored 29 and 27 in last two, this score was epic. All thanks to his nine marks.
1 – Trent Bianco (77) Collingwood, DEF/MID
The most traded-in player for round 12 didn't disappoint. Sixteen disposals, four marks, four tackles and a goal.
LEADERBOARD: James Jordon 21, Tom Powell 15, Chad Warner 13, Matthew Flynn 12, Errol Gulden 11, Caleb Poulter 10, Deven Robertson 9, Nikolas Cox 9, Jy Farrar 7.
Bailey Smith (44) – Ouch! You wouldn't have expected Bazlenka's score to drop out this week.
Lachlan Sholl (46) – We copped some poor scores from rookies, but this is unacceptable from someone (once) valued at more than $600k. It's time to go.
Paddy Dow (48) – Welcome back, Paddy! Despite plenty of centre-bounce attendances, it was more of the same from the pre-season hype player. Dow didn't lay one tackle in his first game since being injured in round seven.
James Harmes (62) – It's never a great start to the round when a relatively unique mid-priced player gives away three free kicks and posts a 60.
Isaac Heeney (66) – While this score is far from disastrous, he was on 32 at quarter-time and you'd think if he kicked two goals, the final score would have been a bit higher… especially considering he finished with less than half his round 11 score.
Patrick Cripps (72) – We thought he was back the last three weeks with scores of 103, 107 and 120. This was his third lowest score of the season. Enjoy the break and ice that corkie.
Dayne Zorko (118) – This isn't about the score as it was another ripper from the Lions' skipper. It's for the one-week suspension he was offered by the MRO. Come on, Zorks! It's the bye rounds, we need you in round 14!