SYDNEY and the Western Bulldogs face crunch seasons of re-signings with the clubs sitting atop the competition for the most free agents in 2022.

AFL.com.au has compiled an exclusive full list of this year's free agents, with the Swans having 10 free agents on their list and the Bulldogs having nine among the 104 free agents across the AFL.

Seven of those for the Bulldogs played in last year's Grand Final defeat to Melbourne, with freshly appointed vice-captain Jack Macrae set to become a free agent for the first time in his decorated career.

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All-Australian pair Caleb Daniel and Bailey Dale, 2016 Norm Smith medallist Jason Johannisen, defenders Zaine Cordy and Taylor Duryea and veteran ruckman Stefan Martin are all free agents to start this year as will be flag-winner Toby McLean and former deputy skipper Mitch Wallis.

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2022 free agency special, spotlight on flag contender

AFL.com.au's star reporters Riley Beveridge and Cal Twomey unpack the 2022 free agency list

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Sydney, too, has a number of key re-signings on its plate, with gun forward Isaac Heeney hitting free agent status for the first time.

Superstar Swan Lance Franklin will also again be a free agent again after he left Hawthorn for the Harbour City at the end of 2013, while Jake Lloyd, Harry Cunningham, Josh Kennedy, Sam Reid and Sam Naismith are also free agents for the Swans. Co-captain Dane Rampe was due to qualify as a free agent but has added an extra year to his deal to remain with the club until the end of 2023.

Heeney is one of the headline acts from the draft class of 2014 who are first-time free agents, along with Collingwood pair Jordan De Goey and Darcy Moore, Melbourne flag-winner Angus Brayshaw, Essendon duo Kyle Langford and Jayden Laverde and Richmond premiership star Jayden Short.

Gun forward Isaac Heeney is set to be talking point this year after hitting free agency status for the first time. Picture: Getty Images

Short is among some high-profile Richmond free agents, including triple-premiership players Trent Cotchin, Jack Riewoldt, Kane Lambert and Shane Edwards, while Port Adelaide midfielders Travis Boak and Karl Amon are also free agents.

Brisbane has six free agents, including key forward Dan McStay, although Daniel Rich has added an extra year to his contract through to the end of 2023, wiping him off the free-agency list for this season.

Similarly at Fremantle gun forward Michael Walters was due to become a free agent this year but added another year to his deal to extend him through to 2023 at the Dockers.

Heeney, Moore and De Goey will be among the group of restricted free agents who qualify as players in their eighth or ninth seasons entering free agency for the first time and who are in the top 25 per cent of their club's earners.

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Others who are likely to be in this category when the AFL determines its 'restricted' banding include Hawk James Sicily and Brayshaw.

James Sicily during a Hawthorn training session on November 29, 2021. Picture: hawthornfc.com.au

Bids for restricted free agents can be matched by a player's club forcing a trade deal. Any players outside the top 25 per cent of earners or who have served 10 years or more at their current club will be eligible as unrestricted free agents.

Free agency has also widened in recent years to include players previously delisted or those who have previously qualified as free agents. For instance, Geelong's Isaac Smith and Carlton's Jack Newnes will both be free agents this year again after joining their respective current clubs via free agency.

>>SCROLL DOWN FOR FULL LIST OF FREE AGENTS

Giant Jacob Wehr, who was delisted last year after his first season at the club but re-selected as a rookie, will now classify as a free agent under the delisted rules.  

2022 FREE AGENTS BELOW

*Previously delisted
^Previously a free agent

Taylor Walker
Mitch Hinge*
Ben Davis*

Darcy Gardiner
Ryan Lester
Daniel McStay
Dayne Zorko
Cam Ellis-Yolmen^
Mitch Robinson*

Ed Curnow
Matt Kennedy*
Jack Newnes^
Matt Cottrell*
Oscar McDonald*
Lochie O'Brien*

Mason Cox
Jordan De Goey
Jamie Elliott
Darcy Moore
Jordan Roughead^
Isaac Chugg*

Dyson Heppell
Michael Hurley
Kyle Langford
Jayden Laverde
Alec Waterman*

David Mundy
Alex Pearce
Bailey Banfield*
Connor Blakely*
Mitch Crowden*

Luke Dahlhaus^
Tom Hawkins
Shaun Higgins^
Joel Selwood
Isaac Smith^

Levi Casboult*
Jez McLennan*

Jarrod Brander*
Matt De Boer*
Lachlan Keeffe*
Adam Kennedy
Zach Sproule*
Jacob Wehr*

Jack Gunston
Daniel Howe
Ben McEvoy
Liam Shiels
James Sicily
Kyle Hartigan^

Angus Brayshaw
Jayden Hunt
Mitch Brown*
Majak Daw*

Ben Cunnington
Todd Goldstein
Kayne Turner
Josh Walker*
Kyron Hayden*

Karl Amon
Travis Boak
Robbie Gray
Steven Motlop^
Sam Skinner*
Trent Dumont*
Sam Mayes*
Trent McKenzie*

Trent Cotchin
Shane Edwards
Kane Lambert
Jack Riewoldt
Jayden Short
Bigoa Nyuon*
Matthew Parker*
Ben Miller*

Jarryn Geary
Tom Campbell^
Mason Wood*
Darragh Joyce*

Harry Cunningham
Lance Franklin^
Isaac Heeney
Josh Kennedy
Jake Lloyd
Sam Naismith
Sam Reid
Robbie Fox*
Lewis Taylor*
Paddy McCartin*

Shannon Hurn
Josh Kennedy
Nic Naitanui
Jackson Nelson
Luke Shuey
Jamaine Jones*

Zaine Cordy
Bailey Dale
Caleb Daniel
Taylor Duryea^
Jason Johannisen
Jack Macrae
Stefan Martin^
Toby McLean
Mitch Wallis