THE FANTASY weekend doesn't feel the same with just five games… and the adjusted bye round was challenging as the majority of teams only just scraped to having 18 scoring players.
Round 14 saw a mix of scores with Steve's massive 2142 winning the round. Former Eagle Will Schofield was riding the fortunes of his team on Sunday afternoon to finish second for the weekend.
With four trades available for Fantasy Classic coaches, a couple of downgrades and, in turn, an upgrade or two was the plan of attack for many. Spending up for Darcy Parish (84) didn't go to plan, but many of the premium options among the most traded-in players delivered.
On the other hand, some of the rookies were disappointing.
Jai Newcombe (27) didn't reach the lofty heights of his 14-tackle debut while Hawthorn teammate Lachlan Bramble (43) would have most likely dropped out of plenty of best 18s. The difference for many coaches for round 14 was how many players they had available and how many were premiums.
Relying on rookies can be tough watching!
With lockout lifting and getting your best 22 in place, hopefully your team is looking better after the byes than what you started.
Fantasy Pig of the week
One of the most underrated Fantasy players in the competition is Jarryd Lyons (161). He fills the stat line each week and posted his best numbers for the year in Hobart in round 14. More than 1200 coaches brought in the Lion for his 36 disposals, six marks and 12 tackles. Lyons' 161 was his fifth score greater than 120 this season and now ranks third for total points scored in 2021. A worthy point of difference in your team as he only appears in four per cent of Fantasy Classic squads.
Tim Taranto (145) is averaging 117 this season and has been putting up epic numbers of late with three 140-plus scores in his last seven appearances. The Fantasy breakout of Ollie Wines (154) keeps getting better with a career-high 43 disposals against the Suns as the Power racked up the most points combined for the final bye round. Tom Mitchell (134) loves playing at University of Tasmania Stadium and his 36 tackles were complemented by eight tackles and a goal.
TOP SCORERS – R14
1. Jarryd Lyons 161
2. Ollie Wines 161
3. Tim Taranto 145
4. Jake Stringer 136
5. Tom Mitchell 134
6. Marcus Bontempelli 127
7. Jack Ziebell 124
8. Touk Miller 122
9. Tom Stewart 121
10. Jaeger O'Meara 121
11. Lachie Whitfield 119
12. Isaac Cumming 119
13. Hugh McCluggage 118
14. Sam Menegola 111
15. Lachie Neale 111
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 14:
5 – Miles Bergman (103) Port Adelaide, DEF/FWD
As coaches struggled to get to the 18 required players in the final bye round, the Port Adelaide rookie stepped up and was among most teams' best few players. Bergman had a huge second quarter that saw him amass 64 points thanks to 13 disposals and seven marks which set himself up to record the first Fantasy ton of his career.
4 – Connor Idun (84) GWS Giants, DEF
Underrated starting pick. Playing all but one game, Idun is averaging 63 points in GWS' backline.
3 – Harrison Jones (82) Essendon, FWD
Two goals helped Jones to his highest Fantasy score, but his eight marks were most impressive.
2 – Liam Stocker (73) Carlton, DEF
While the Blues were disappointing, Stocker's 18 disposals and five marks was a welcome positive.
1 – Jacob Koschitzke (66) Hawthorn, FWD
Kosi likes kicking goals at UTAS Stadium and he added three more on Sunday afternoon.
LEADERBOARD: James Jordon 21, Tom Powell 15, Chad Warner 13, Matthew Flynn 12, Errol Gulden 11, Caleb Poulter 10, Deven Robertson 9, Nik Cox 9, Jy Farrar 7.
Mitch Duncan (8) – A knee injury in the first quarter ended Duncan's night early, having just two handballs and a tackle to his name. Unfortunately he is a must-trade as he'll spend a significant amount of time on the sidelines. A shame as he was averaging 133 in the month prior to his round 10 concussion.
Sam Walsh (55) – Copped the Matt De Boer tag. Disappointing for his coaches who have enjoyed a fantastic season to date.
Patrick Dangerfield (82) – Time on ground is low for Danger following his syndesmosis injury. Look to jump on him in a couple of weeks if you haven't already got him.
Darcy Parish (84) – Saved his score by kicking a late goal, a lot of coaches paid up for the in-form Don for a disappointing return. More so for the five per cent of the competition who named him as their captain.