SOMETIMES a player has to work harder to be recognised for his efforts if he is left to do as he pleases without an opponent, because his kicks aren't as hard won as the midfielder fighting off a tag for four quarters.
But there is no doubt a loose man, if he takes advantage of the space he is given, can change the course of a game and be the most damaging player on the field.
Collingwood's Adam Oxley was that player against Melbourne in Monday's Queen's Birthday clash at the MCG, earning a place in the backline of the round 10 Team of the Week, brought to you by Accor Hotels.
Left alone by the Demons forwards – despite their coach's requests to man him up – Oxley racked up 30 possessions and 14 marks, shutting down Melbourne's forward entries while Travis Cloke kicked seven goals at the other end.
ZACH TUOHY (Carlton) - It takes a special effort to keep Eddie Betts to one goal this season, so Tuohy deserves his spot in the back pocket this week. Betts had kicked 21.7 in the five games leading into his match-up with Tuohy, but the Irishman kept him to 1.0 at the MCG.
ALEX RANCE (Richmond) - Rance's opponent Matthew Pavlich might have dropped some marks uncharacteristically, but the implied pressure of Rance would surely have played a role. Rance was superb in his match-up with the Fremantle skipper, keeping him to two marks and 0.2.
ADAM OXLEY (Collingwood) - Left to roam as a free defender on Monday, Oxley was a match-winner for Collingwood with 30 possessions and 14 marks. He took as many intercept marks (eight) as Melbourne took marks inside their forward 50.
SAM MITCHELL (Hawthorn) - The veteran Hawk showed his versatility again, dropping to half-back when needed but still having a massive influence through the midfield. Best afield against St Kilda, he racked up 35 possessions, eight clearances and five inside 50s.
HARRY TAYLOR (Geelong) - Taylor can defend and attack with equal measure, like the best key defenders in the AFL. Against Essendon, he had a team-high 33 possessions, 10 marks and three inside 50s.
RORY LAIRD (Adelaide) - The small defender has become a consistent ball-winner this season and he racked up a team-high 26 disposals against Carlton in round 10. It was his AFL-high seven rebound 50s, however, and ability to attack off half-back that gets him in this week's team.
JACK STEVEN (St Kilda) - Was awarded the Silk-Miller Medal as best afield against Hawthorn in the Blue Ribbon Cup. Playing his 100th game, Steven racked up a game-high 38 disposals, seven clearances and five inside 50s.
DUSTIN MARTIN (Richmond) - The dynamic midfielder spent time going head-to-head with Fremantle star Nat Fyfe and he came out on top. Finished with 34 possessions, five clearances and five inside 50s.
DAN HANNEBERY (Sydney Swans) - Prolific against Gold Coast, the Swans running machine racked up 42 possessions, including 35 uncontested. Had an equal game-high seven inside 50s and didn't stop attacking the under-siege Suns.
SHANE EDWARDS (Richmond)- Is arguably the Tigers' most improved player again this season after a big 2014. A genuine midfielder now, Edwards had 25 possessions against Fremantle and stood up under pressure to use the ball well.
JOSH JENKINS (Adelaide) - The match-winner against Carlton, Jenkins stood up to kick five goals in a nine-point win, taking eight marks and converting at crucial times. Took four of his eight marks inside 50.
JARRAD McVEIGH (Sydney Swans) - The versatile veteran could be played across half-back or in the midfield, but he slots into this team at half-forward after an attacking game against Gold Coast. Had an equal team-high seven inside 50s to go with his 39 disposals.
CHAD WINGARD (Port Adelaide)- Port's leading goalkicker against the Western Bulldogs with three, Wingard was also able to push up the ground like he did in his All Australian season and rack up 23 possessions and four inside 50s. Was a threat in the air as always.
TRAVIS CLOKE (Collingwood)- There was no stopping Cloke after he took two marks close to goal and slotted his first two shots. With his confidence ballooning, he went on to kick 7.0 and take five marks inside 50 in a powerful, match-winning display.
SHAUN HIGGINS (North Melbourne) - The former Bulldogs' move forward at his new home is paying dividends after another impressive performance. Was the most dangerous forward on the ground with four goals. His six tackles showed he is contributing defensively as well.
SHANE MUMFORD (Greater Western Sydney) - In a big week for ruckmen, Mumford stood out with his 51 hit-outs five clearances and typical physicality at stoppages. He laid eight tackles and gave his team a massive 53-35 advantage at stoppages.
MARC MURPHY (Carlton) - When his predecessor as captain was cut down with a career-ending knee injury, Murphy lifted and was enormous for the Blues, keeping them in the contest against Adelaide until the death. Finished with 36 possessions, six clearances and four inside 50s.
JACK ZIEBELL (North Melbourne)- The 24-year-old's performance against West Coast in Tasmania was one that smacked of a future captain. He was tough in winning 24 possessions and 11 clearances, and composed at the right time, sealing the result with a goal.
OLLIE WINES (Port Adelaide) - Unlucky not to be starting after such an impressive performance, Wines had a massive 11 clearances and 33 possessions against the Western Bulldogs' hard-nosed midfield. Has made a massive difference to the Power since returning.
NAT FYFE (Fremantle) - Overshadowed by the Tigers' ball-winners on Friday night, he still can't be kept out of this team. Provided highlights with a soaring mark and checkside goal from the boundary, also winning nine clearances in his 26 possessions.
CALLAN WARD (Greater Western Sydney)- The GWS captain was unlucky to be pipped by Andrew Swallow for most tackles in round 10 (13) after laying 12 himself against the Brisbane Lions.
A much-admired player, he was also productive with the ball with 10 clearances and a disposal efficiency of 81 per cent.
BRANDON ELLIS (Richmond) - Overshadowed only by teammate Dustin Martin on Friday night, Ellis continued his excellent season with 26 possessions at Domain Stadium, barely wasting a disposal.
• Check out how fans voted on previous teams of the week
• Who's in the mix for your team ahead of round 11?