ADELAIDE is considering switching superstar midfielder Patrick Dangerfield into defence against Richmond on Saturday.

The Crows hope the radical move will help him shake the tags that have followed him so closely in 2013.

As the Crows' most influential player, it's little wonder the 23-year-old 'Raging Bull' has come under such close attention from opposition sides.

His output is down from an average of 27 disposals a game last year to 24 this year, but he has spent considerably more time deep in Adelaide's forward line in the absence of Taylor Walker. 

Crows coach Brenton Sanderson hinted his star pupil would follow the footsteps of several star midfielders and experience life as a defender against the Tigers.

"At training today he played across half-back, so there's a little teaser for you," Sanderson said on Wednesday.

"He's getting tagged now every week … if you look across the competition now, Sam Mitchell plays across half-back for Hawthorn … Bryce Gibbs for Carlton … a lot of sides now play their guns across half-back."

Sanderson also hinted Dangerfield may spend more time deep forward if needed.

"Darren Jarman, when he was here, used to take the centre bounce and then he used to jog down to full forward, maybe we can start doing that with 'Danger' as well," he said.

Sanderson said his side's crucial encounter with the in-form Tigers would decide once and for all whether it wanted to play finals footy.

Last weekend's insipid 77-point loss to the Swans left the Crows perilously close to losing touch of the top eight.

Another defeat could see last year's preliminary finalists two full wins out of the eight as it entered its round 13 bye.

Sanderson insisted any fight in his group, or lack there of, would show on Saturday afternoon.

"You've got to see a better Crows side right form the first bounce this week and the attitude at training has been great, the meetings have been great but that's just talk," he said.

"We didn't fight like a hungry team should when it mattered last week.

"If this is a proud group, if this is a club that wants to be a finalist in 2013, we've got to start winning games straight away."

Adelaide will be without forward line barometer Jared Petrenko for the clash due to a grade one AC joint strain.

Petrenko hurt the shoulder joint in a solid collision with Swans ruckman Shane Mumford last weekend but should be fit after the club's bye.

Small defender Luke Brown will come back into the line-up, as will midfielder David Mackay, who missed the loss to the Swans with a corked hip.

Harry Thring is a reporter for AFL Media. Follow him on Twitter: @AFL_Harry.