Luke Davies-Uniacke, Lance Franklin and Jacob Hopper. Pictures: AFL Photos

WHO IS a chance to play in round 16?

In this week's In the Mix we find the players who are giving their selectors plenty of food for thought.

Who's going out, who's sore, who is under the pump? Our reporters attempt to pick all the R16 ins and outs. Check it out.

The Crows will monitor key defender Nick Murray this week after he suffered a corked hamstring against Collingwood. If unavailable, their options include the untried James Borlase, Irishman Mark Keane, or going in smaller against North Melbourne. Ned McHenry impressed as the substitute and will push for elevation, while midfielder Harry Schoenberg (27 disposals and nine clearances) continues to perform in the SANFL. Jackson Hately (32, two goals and six inside 50s) has also hit form, while forward Shane McAdam booted two goals and is available after working his way back from a quad injury. Wingman Brayden Cook has been an emergency several times this season but is yet to break into the team. – Nathan Schmook 

R15 sub: Ned McHenry (replaced Nick Murray)

Ned McHenry is tackled by John Noble during Adelaide's clash against Collingwood in round 15, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

The big decision for Chris Fagan revolves around the availability of former skipper Dayne Zorko, who has missed the past three matches with a calf injury. If Zorko is named, the pressure likely falls on either youngster Kai Lohmann or Deven Robertson to keep their spots. Darcy Fort could move from the sub role into the 22 if the Lions want to return to a three-pronged tall forward set-up against Richmond, while Callum Ah Chee and Noah Answerth continue to keep the pressure on with excellent form in the VFL. - Michael Whiting

R15 sub: Darcy Fort (replaced Kai Lohmann)

Dayne Zorko in action during Brisbane's clash with Gold Coast in round 10, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

The Blues have a gap to fill on the wing, with running machine Matt Cottrell currently serving a one-match suspension. It could mean an AFL debut for Jaxon Binns, who went into the bye with 32 disposals and seven marks at reserves level. Caleb Marchbank was set to play senior footy earlier in the month, only for ankle soreness to scupper his chances of a long-awaited comeback. He could now make an immediate return to the AFL side after recovering over the bye. Zac Fisher (24 disposals, one goal) and George Hewett (24 disposals, nine tackles) were among the best in the side's last VFL outing. - Riley Beveridge

R14 sub: Paddy Dow (replaced Jack Martin)

Jaxon Binns kicks the ball during Carlton training on June 8, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

Collingwood returned to the top of the ladder on Sunday and has plenty of options pushing for a spot in Craig McRae's side. Billy Frampton didn't play at either level after making way for Jeremy Howe on Sunday. Fin Macrae (24 disposals) and Trent Bianco (29 disposals) kept their names in contention during a windy game at the AIA Centre on Saturday. Jakob Ryan is yet to play a game but is in the hunt for a debut after finishing with 29 touches against Sydney's reserves. Trey Ruscoe and Josh Carmichael also made contributions in the VFL, while Jack Ginnivan kicked 1.1 from 13 touches in challenging conditions. Reef McInnes kicked two goals after being squeezed out of the senior side, while Nathan Kreuger was quieter after a strong game before the bye but might be considered after Ash Johnson was subbed again. - Josh Gabelich

R15 sub: Beau McCreery (replaced Ash Johnson)


Coming off their loss to the Dockers, the Bombers are set to be without ruckman Sam Draper again, while Brandon Zerk-Thatcher (adductor) was hurt late in Perth. Whether Essendon persists with two rucks in Andrew Phillips (11 disposals, 21 hitouts) and Nick Bryan (seven disposals, 12 hitouts from 34 per cent time on ground) is a question, while Sam Weideman has gone goalless in the past four games. Nick Hind responded to his axing from the senior side with 27 disposals in the VFL, while Patrick Voss, who is yet to make his AFL debut, could've had an even bigger game, but kicked 2.4 from 18 disposals and eight marks. Massimo D'Ambrosio (25 disposals) and No.5 pick Elijah Tsatas (21) had solid games, while Nik Cox (nine) continued his comeback. – Dejan Kalinic

R15 sub: Jye Menzie (replaced Nick Bryan)


Changes will be minor for the Dockers this week after a hard-fought win against Essendon that saw the team get back to playing its way. Wingman James Aish is the only obvious inclusion after recovering from a back injury that delayed his return from a concussion suffered in round 13. A flexible player, the Dockers will be keen to get him back in the 22, with the possibility young midfielder Neil Erasmus could move to the substitute role. With captain Alex Pearce (lower leg) and impressive midfielder Matthew Johnson (cork) both cleared to play, it is unlikely there will be more than one change. – Nathan Schmook 

R15 sub: Sam Sturt (replaced Alex Pearce)

Nat Fyfe checks on James Aish during the R13 match between Fremantle and Richmond at Optus Stadium on June 10, 2023. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

Geelong captain Patrick Dangerfield will play in Friday night's clash at the SCG after missing the win over Melbourne due to a collapsed lung and rib injury. Esava Ratugolea is also set to return against the Swans after missing the past month with a hamstring. The Cats will be without Jeremy Cameron, who has entered concussion protocols, but have some players in form in the VFL. Ollie Dempsey collected 32 touches against Casey after being included in the 26-man squad against the Demons. Brandan Parfitt has fallen out of favour this year but did his chances of a recall no harm with 25 touches and five clearances. Oisin Mullin finished with 17 disposals after returning from an adductor injury. Sam Menegola played his first game of the season after recovering from a lingering knee injury but might need some time to build his fitness.  - Josh Gabelich

R15 sub: Jack Bowes (replaced Jeremy Cameron)

Esava Ratugolea runs out ahead of the R10 match between Geelong and Fremantle at Optus Stadium on May 20, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

Coming off a strong win over Hawthorn, it's unlikely the Suns will make any changes ahead of facing Collingwood at Heritage Bank Stadium on Saturday. The club says Touk Miller is still two weeks away from returning from a knee injury, but he's worth keeping an eye on the co-captain. Sean Lemmens is now two weeks back from a hamstring injury and pressing for a return, while Alex Sexton went back to the VFL and kicked four goals. - Michael Whiting

R15 sub: Rory Atkins (replaced Lachie Weller)

Sean Lemmens in action during the round nine clash between West Coast and Gold Coast at Optus Stadium, May 12, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

The Giants should regain Jesse Hogan, who was a late withdrawal from their last match with a calf complaint. Nick Haynes will also be fit, having recovered from a rolled ankle over the bye. Lachie Whitfield will go out of the team as he serves a one-match suspension, but Isaac Cumming (29 disposals, eight marks) was among the best in the side's last VFL outing and could provide a natural replacement. James Peatling (37 disposals, nine clearances) and Harry Rowston (28 disposals, one goal) were also impressive in that reserves performance. Brent Daniels is still battling a hamstring injury and won't return just yet. - Riley Beveridge

R14 sub: Ryan Angwin (replaced Nick Haynes)

Jesse Hogan celebrates kicking a goal during the round 12 match between Greater Western Sydney and Richmond at Giants Stadium on June 4, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

Hawthorn is hoping to finally regain Changkuoth Jiath for the first time since round nine, but the half-back still needs to prove his fitness after a calf and Achilles injury. Josh Ward put his hand up for another shot after amassing 38 disposals and five clearances for Box Hill on Sunday. Cooper Stephens is hunting a first opportunity under Sam Mitchell and did his chances no harm, finishing with 24 touches and six clearances in the VFL, while Henry Hustwaite continued to build towards a debut with 22 touches and seven clearances. Fergus Greene kicked three goals in the VFL in three weeks after returning from the AFL, but has turned his season around in the past fortnight with three more goals on the weekend, following five before the bye. Finn Maginness and Denver Grainger-Barras were included in the 26-man squad against the Suns and played for Box Hill. - Josh Gabelich

R15 sub: Sam Butler (replaced Lloyd Meek)

Changkuoth Jiath is tackled by Trent Rivers during the R9 match between Hawthorn and Melbourne at the MCG on May 13, 2023. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

The Demons have confirmed Clayton Oliver will miss a fifth straight game as he continues to battle a hamstring strain, while premiership defender Michael Hibberd has also been ruled out with a kidney injury. Jake Bowey fronted up in the VFL on the weekend after recovering from concussion and would be a likely replacement for Hibberd, while Adam Tomlinson, who was unlucky to be dropped last week, collected 27 disposals and took nine marks for Casey and could also earn a recall. Melbourne's attacking woes continued last week, but there's plenty of pressure coming from the lower level with Jake Melksham (four goals), Ben Brown (two) and Josh Schache (two) all options to return to the Dees' struggling forward line. – Alison O'Connor

R15 sub: Charlie Spargo (replaced James Jordon)


The Kangaroos will be hopeful of regaining important midfielder Luke Davies-Uniacke, who used the bye over the weekend to fully recover from his ongoing hamstring issues. Darcy Tucker (40 disposals, two goals) pressed his case for a senior return in the side's last VFL outing, while Flynn Perez (29 disposals, seven marks) was also impressive. Tristan Xerri made his return from an ankle injury with 16 disposals and 28 hitouts in the side's last reserves fixture. - Riley Beveridge

R14 sub: Miller Bergman (replaced Phoenix Spicer)

Luke Davies-Uniacke tries to break a tackle from Sean Darcy during North Melbourne's clash against Fremantle in round two, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

It's hard to make changes to a team that has won 11 straight, but after missing the pre-bye win over Geelong through illness, you'd expect Junior Rioli to resume his place against Essendon on Saturday night. In great news for Port, Xavier Duursma will also be tested this week as he seeks to return from a PCL injury suffered in late April, although it might be tough to squeeze him straight back into a winning team. Captain Tom Jonas is still playing in the SANFL and ready to go when Ken Hinkley calls on him. - Michael Whiting 

R14 sub: Riley Bonner (replaced Josh Sinn)

Junior Rioli kicks the ball during Port Adelaide's clash against West Coast in round six, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

The Tigers have somewhat of a selection crunch on their hands for one of the first times this season after their bye. Jacob Hopper and Dion Prestia should complete a straight swap, the latter ruled out with a calf injury after the former has overcome his own. Marlion Pickett is available for selection after a club-imposed match off following his arrest in Perth, while Noah Cumberland is also ready to go. Samson Ryan should hold his place, the bye round coming at a perfect time for his minor ankle injury. Richmond's VFL team also had a bye last weekend, with Ivan Soldo returning from his foot injury through the twos the round prior. Maurice Rioli jnr may be the one to make way for a returning Pickett, with Cumberland unlikely to crack the forward mix, given the growing structural importance of Ben Miller. – Sarah Black

R14 sub: Hugo Ralphsmith (replaced Samson Ryan)

Jacob Hopper and Dustin Martin celebrate a goal during Richmond's round two match against Adelaide at Adelaide Oval on March 25, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

After back-to-back losses for the first time under his watch, Ross Lyon might consider some changes ahead of the weekend. Seb Ross was managed last Friday night and could return for the trip to face West Coast. Jack Billings is yet to play a senior game in 2023 due to a fractured leg and an untimely hamstring strain, but after collecting 24 touches and three goals in his return on the weekend, he could finally earn another shot. Jack Bytel had a big game against Brisbane's reserves, finishing with 26 disposals, 13 tackles, six clearances and two goals. Tom Highmore has been close for in recent weeks and could be considered for the first time under Lyon after gathering 22 touches and six marks. Zak Jones and Dan McKenzie both got through their first games of the season with Sandringham. - Josh Gabelich

R15 sub: Cooper Sharman (replaced Ryan Byrnes)


After a 171-point demolition of West Coast boosted their finals chances, the Swans are unlikely to make too many changes to face Geelong on Friday night. But there could be two important inclusions with Lance Franklin potentially back from a knee injury and Tom McCartin having made a successful return from concussion in the VFL, gathering 25 disposals and seven marks. Dylan Stephens (28 disposals), Will Gould (24 and a goal) and Jack Buller (19 and three) also had good games at state league level. Will Hayward was a late withdrawal for the thrashing of the Eagles and could also be welcomed back. Isaac Heeney and Logan McDonald joined co-captain Callum Mills, who was substituted, in making strong returns last week, with things starting to look up for the Swans on the injury front. – Dejan Kalinic

R15 sub: Robbie Fox (replaced Callum Mills)


The Eagles look set to name premiership forward Jamie Cripps for his first game since suffering a broken ankle in round three after a strong training session on Tuesday. Defender Shannon Hurn is less likely but will still push his case after a hamstring injury. The depleted Eagles don't have many selection levers to pull after a 171-point loss to Sydney that would normally cost plenty of players their positions in the team. With the omissions of Elliot Yeo (hip), Jack Williams (ankle), Samo Petrevski-Seton (quad) and possibly more, ruckman Harry Barnett will push to make his debut, Campbell Chesser will move into the 22, and midfielders Zane Trew and Xavier O'Neill will likely be called on. – Nathan Schmook  

R15 sub: Campbell Chesser (replaced Jack Williams)

Jamie Cripps celebrates a goal during the round two clash between West Coast and Greater Western Sydney at Optus Stadium on March 26, 2023. Picture: Getty Images

Luke Beveridge will need to solve some issues down back ahead of Saturday's clash against Fremantle at Marvel Stadium with Liam Jones and Tim O'Brien sidelined for the next couple of months. Ryan Gardner has fallen out of favour this year but should return on the weekend. Josh Bruce is another option who could be considered, along with James O'Donnell, who was dropped the week before the bye after playing five straight games. Caleb Poulter has been close in recent weeks since being selected in the mid-season draft. Buku Khamis kicked a couple of goals last start but hasn't been able to earn another shot since last season.  - Josh Gabelich

R14 sub: Lachie McNeill (replaced Liam Jones)