Adelaide Crows

Get them in: Cam Ellis-Yolmen – who had a game-high 36 disposals in a 53-point SANFL loss to Glenelg – is pushing for a call-up. Do they hand a debut to first-year defender Lachlan Sholl, who was outstanding across half-back with 34 touches? Myles Poholke (25 disposals, three goals), Hugh Greenwood (19 disposals, six clearances), Andy Otten (18 disposals) and Jordan Gallucci (16 disposals) will also be discussed.

Under the pump: Bryce Gibbs, Kyle Hartigan and Chayce Jones will be in the gun.

Medical room: Wingman Paul Seedsman will be sidelined with a knee injury, while Sam Jacobs' knee will be assessed this week but he is unlikely.

Verdict: In: Gallucci, Otten. Out: Seedsman, Hartigan. - Lee Gaskin

Brisbane Lions

Get them in: There's a host of players bashing the door down after a big round one NEAFL victory over the NT Thunder, led by Tom Cutler (22 touches and four goals) and Allen Christensen (34 disposals). 

Under the pump: A couple of players were down on their best on Saturday night, but no-one is under significant pressure. Ryan Bastinac had just nine disposals but continues to play a solid link role. 

Medical room: First setback of the season for the senior team with Zac Bailey ruled out for at least a month with a hamstring injury. Cam Rayner looked a touch impeded against Port with a corked thigh, but he's fine.

Verdict: The Lions will lose some pace with Bailey's absence, but Christensen would appear the perfect replacement. Cedric Cox could also be considered if they wanted genuine speed, but he's been playing forward in recent weeks. - Michael Whiting

Allen Christensen appears the perfect replacement for Zac Bailey. Picture: AFL Photos

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Get them in: The Blues will be hopeful Matthew Kreuzer is finally fit, while it might be time to consider recalls for Matthew Kennedy and Jack Silvagni. Carlton's VFL affiliate had a round-one bye, making it tough for anyone to push for selection.

Under the pump: Small forwards Cam Polson and Michael Gibbons were particularly quiet against Sydney, while Lochie O'Brien also took some time to get going.

Medical room: Andrew Phillips was a late withdrawal due to a quad injury, while Mitch McGovern hurt his hamstring. Kreuzer should be fit after a late start due to knee surgery.

Verdict: The Blues will sweat on McGovern's fitness. Kreuzer could replace him, Matthew Lobbe or Levi Casboult, while Silvagni and Kennedy will be considered for the underperforming Polson, Gibbons and O'Brien. - Riley Beveridge


Get them in: Defender Flynn Appleby and midfielders Ben Crocker, Callum Brown and Rupert Wills have been in good touch in the VFL, but believes veteran Travis Varcoe will return against the Western Bulldogs at the MCG on Friday night.

Under the pump: Tagger Levi Greenwood performed another superb stopping job on Richmond champion Dustin Martin in round two but seemed a little lost in the defeat to West Coast.

Medical room: Key defender Darcy Moore rolled an ankle in the loss to West Coast but played out the game, has trained well and will be fine.

Verdict: Varcoe in for Greenwood. - Ben Collins

Running defender Isaac Quaynor is pressing for his AFL debut. Picture: AFL Photos


Get them in: A number of Bombers performed well in their comprehensive VFL win over Frankston. Mitch Brown (five goals) and James Stewart (four goals) are key forwards who could come in, while Mason Redman, ruckman Sam Draper and midfielders Kyle Langford and Dylan Clarke could all be considered.

Under the pump: It was a much-improved performance from Essendon last week, taking the pressure off plenty of players. Zac Clarke and Mark Baguley didn't have a big say on the result, however, if the Bombers were to swing several changes.

Medical room: The Bombers will lose Kobe Mutch and Shaun McKernan to their long-term hamstring tears. David Myers was a late withdrawal last week and could be available, while Cale Hooker is tipped to be ready for selection after missing the first three weeks with a calf injury.

Verdict: There'll be at least two changes, with the Bombers hopeful of regaining Hooker. He could come in and play forward to replace McKernan, or they could bring Brown back in. If Myers isn't available, Langford or Redman may fight it out for Mutch's place. - Callum Twomey

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Get them in: It is seriously doubtful Nat Fyfe will be cleared from a heavy concussion off a six-day break, which would force a re-jig of the line-up. It could send Rory Lobb back to attack, with Sean Darcy returning to the ruck and big-name forward recruit Jesse Hogan back into midfield to be a big body around clearances.

Under the pump: Ethan Hughes and Bailey Banfield were quiet against St Kilda, and the Dockers might want to reward Mitch Crowden (32 disposals) or possible debutant Tom North (26) for strong Peel performances. Is draftee Sam Sturt (20, one goal) a potential bolter?

Medical room: All eyes will be on Fyfe, while Darcy has been battling a corked quad.

Verdict: Ross Lyon is still tinkering with his best mix of talls, so it's tough to predict, but if Fyfe is out it would be tempting to recall Darcy and send Hogan into the middle. - Travis King

Sean Darcy may replace Nat Fyfe if the skipper is ruled out. Picture: AFL Photos

Geelong Cats

Get them in: Defender Zach Guthrie was the Cats' best in the VFL, while Sam Simpson, Quinton Narkle and James Parsons appear the next midfielders/forwards in line. Ryan Abbott continues to push for selection after he travelled as an emergency to Adelaide last week.

Under the pump: Esava Ratugolea's role as back-up ruckman is crucial, however he's kicked just one goal from three games in attack. Tom Atkins had six touches without laying a tackle against the Crows.

Medical room: Tim Kelly (ankle) and Mark O'Connor (corked hip) will need to prove their fitness from last week's win. Jack Henry (hamstring) comes back into the frame, while Cameron Guthrie (calf) has now missed three weeks and will likely return via the VFL.

Verdict: If fit, Henry for Henderson. If Kelly misses, watch for Narkle. - Mitch Cleary

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Gold Coast Suns

Get them in: Some terrific performances in a tight NEAFL loss to Canberra will keep the heat on the senior team. Will Brodie (38 disposals) was prolific in the midfield, while key forward Sam Day (five goals) also contributed strongly.

Under the pump: Defensive forward Nick Holman had a quiet game against the Bulldogs with eight touches, and more surprisingly, no tackles.

Medical room: No fresh injuries for the Suns will make them happy after a rough past month.

Verdict: Winning form is good form, so Gold Coast should stick with the same 22 for Sunday's match against Carlton. - Michael Whiting

The Suns' winning form may keep Will Brodie from selection. Picture: AFL Photos

GWS Giants

Get them in: The Giants could be boosted by star forward Toby Greene (calf) and co-captain Callan Ward (knee) for Saturday's trip to Geelong. If the pair don't get up, youngsters Jackson Hately, Aidan Bonar and Nick Shipley were all outstanding in the NEAFL last week. Lachie Keeffe could be an option if the team needs some height.

Under the pump: Leon Cameron will have to make at least one change with Tommy Sheridan (calf) unavailable from last week's side, but if he makes any more, Matt Buntine could be the unlucky one.

Medical room: Sheridan will likely miss at least a couple of changes with his issue, while veteran Brett Deledio faces a much longer stint on the sidelines after injuring his calf last week at training.

Verdict: It will be tempting to bring game-changers Greene and Ward back for the clash with the Cats, but it would be risky to go with both players for such a big game. Sheridan goes out, replaced by Greene, with Ward to wait another week. - Adam Curley

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Get them in: Mitch Lewis snagged four goals in Box Hill's comfortable win over Casey on Sunday, but he is probably fighting for Jon Ceglar's position. Dan Howe earned rave reviews for his VFL performance two weekends ago, so another state league match under his belt could be enough. Harry Jones is another onball option, while defender Conor Glass was last week's match-day emergency.

Under the pump: Late inclusion Dylan Moore had some nervous moments on debut but applied himself well with five tackles. Only one of Moore and fellow defensive forward Conor Nash is likely to play.

Medical room: Jarryd Roughead (corked thigh) was a late out after a training collision last Saturday but should be fine to play now. Jaeger O'Meara (hip) and Luke Breust (buttocks) were among the best players on Sunday despite mid-match issues briefly taking them off the field for treatment.

Verdict: Roughy returns, for either Nash or Moore. Howe could be back, too. - Marc McGowan

Former captain Jarryd Roughead should be back to face St Kilda. Picture: AFL Photos


Get them in: Ruckman Braydon Preuss was held out of Sunday's VFL game with the view to perhaps playing his first match for the club against Sydney on Thursday night. Billy Stretch, Marty Hore and Harry Petty were on managed minutes and are also well in the selection frame.

Under the pump: There are a few in this category, with key defenders Sam Frost and Oscar McDonald at the top of the list. Alex Neal-Bullen could also benefit from a spell in the VFL, while Kade Kolodjashnij and Michael Hibberd are other under-performers.

Medical room: Tom McDonald is a 50/50 proposition of facing Sydney after injuring his left ankle against Essendon. Jordan Lewis (hamstring) is still a week away from being fit to return.

Verdict: Preuss for T.McDonald, Petty for O.McDonald, Stretch for Neal-Bullen. - Ben Guthrie

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North Melbourne

Get them in: This looks to be the week in which we'll finally see Paul Ahern, who was North's match-day emergency in round three. Jed Anderson laid eight tackles in the VFL in his competitive return on Saturday night, while Sam Wright also came back via the state league. Nick Larkey, Nathan Hrovat and Tom Murphy were all standouts.

Under the pump: The heat is on Luke McDonald, who lost two key contests with Luke Breust as the Hawks surged back at the weekend and had only five touches to three-quarter time. Tom Campbell, Tarryn Thomas, Kayne Turner, Dom Tyson and Jy Simpkin are under varying degrees of pressure. Ben McKay is also on notice if there's a structural change.

Medical room: Marley Williams (ankle) could miss three more matches, while oft-injured pair Taylor Garner (quad) and Mason Wood (calf) suffered fresh, but minor, setbacks in the VFL.

Verdict: Wright, Anderson, Larkey and Ahern in for McDonald, Thomas, Campbell and Tyson. - Marc McGowan

Is it finally time for North to bring in Paul Ahern? Picture: AFL Photos

Port Adelaide

Get them in: Jack Trengove continues to press his claims for a senior recall, having 42 disposals, 10 tackles and seven clearances in Port's SANFL loss to South Adelaide. Sam Mayes (31 disposals), Kai Pudney (30), Matthew Broadbent (28) and Trent McKenzie (27, two goals) were also impressive. Jarrod Lienert had 19 touches in his first game back from a knee injury.

Under the pump: Willem Drew had just nine disposals in Port's 17-point loss to Brisbane while Dougal Howard and Sam Gray were quiet in their returns.

Medical room: Tom Rockliff will have to pass a concussion test this week while Robbie Gray has a shoulder injury.

Verdict: The Power will go in unchanged. Trengove will come in if Rockliff fails a concussion test. Broadbent needs another run in the SANFL. - Lee Gaskin


Get them in: The experienced Josh Caddy played 70 per cent game time in the VFL in his return from an ankle injury, picking up 17 disposals playing mostly in the midfield. Jack Ross continued his good form with 21 touches and could be in line for a debut, while forward-turned-mid Shai Bolton was busy with 23.

Under the pump: Small forward Dan Butler has had a quiet few weeks after missing the second half of last year with an ankle injury, averaging 10 touches but, more concerning, kicking just one goal. Brownlow medallist Dustin Martin has been suspended for two weeks for striking but is challenging the decision on Tuesday night at the Tribunal.

Medical room: Captain Trent Cotchin is out for two to three weeks with a hamstring strain. Running defender Jayden Short will be on the sidelines for around two months after dislocating his elbow.

Verdict: There's going to be some shuffling at Punt Road. Butler may be the one to make way for Caddy. Ross should make his debut coming in for Cotchin. Defender Bachar Houli may need to pass a test but is the ideal replacement for Short, while Dylan Grimes will return from suspension, sending Noah Balta forward and Caddy to the middle to cover for Martin. - Sarah Black

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St Kilda

Get them in: Expect a refreshed Jack Steven to come straight back in after the club said he was rested to avoid the trip to Perth following a limited pre-season. Playing for Sandringham in the VFL, ruckman Billy Longer had 47 hitouts in his return from a left hamstring injury, Brandon White was reasonable down back while Ben Long and Robbie Young each booted a goal.

Under the pump: Up forward, Dean Kent and Matt Parker have been quiet. Courageous defender Callum Wilkie has been subdued over the past fortnight. Hunter Clark didn't have a huge impact against Fremantle.

Medical room: No pressing concerns here.

Verdict: Steven and White for Kent and Wilkie. - Dinny Navaratnam

Jack Steven should be back after missing the trip to Perth. Picture: AFL Photos

Sydney Swans

Get them in: Veteran Kieren Jack got through another run in the NEAFL and gathered 22 disposals against the Giants, while draftee James Rowbottom (31 possessions and six tackles) was very good. Axed duo Ryan Clarke and Colin O'Riordan found plenty of the footy, as did James Rose, who kicked four goals from his 39 touches.

Under the pump: After their first win of the year the Swans won't likely make any unforced changes, but small forward Ben Ronke did have another quiet game.

Medical room: Jarrad McVeigh could miss up to two months with a quad tear, while Hayward is unavailable for four weeks after having surgery on his broken jaw. Veteran Heath Grundy continues to struggle with a back issue and could also miss another few matches.

Verdict: O'Riordan to replace McVeigh in defence, and Jack to fill the role inside-50 vacated by Hayward. - Adam Curley

West Coast Eagles

Get them in: The Eagles expect Liam Duggan to be available after tweaking his knee and missing the Grand Final rematch, and the young defender would be a certainty for the Western Derby if fit. Jake Waterman bagged five goals in the WAFL, but it will be tough finding a spot for him.

Under the pump: Debutant Josh Rotham was composed against the Pies down back but is likely to make way when Duggan returns.

Medical room: Duggan should be ready to go.

Verdict: Duggan for Rotham. Experienced defender Will Schofield and young half-forward Daniel Venables are in the mix but it's tough to change a winning side. - Travis King

Liam Duggan is an expected inclusion for the Western Derby. Picture: AFL Photos

Western Bulldogs

Get them in: Roarke Smith looked lively with four goals in a dominant 43-point win over Sandringham in the VFL season-opener on Friday night, while Patrick Lipinski shook off a minor injury during the game to rack up plenty of the ball yet again (26 disposals, eight tackles). Bailey Williams couldn't squeeze back into the best 22 after being rested against Hawthorn in round two but did his hopes of a return this week no harm with 19 disposals and seven marks.

Under the pump: An unexpected loss to Gold Coast asks serious questions of the Bulldogs for the first time this season. Ed Richards only had eight possessions and has struggled to have an impact in the early rounds. Coach Luke Beveridge backed in Tim English despite the Dogs losing the hitouts battle 71-16, but perhaps more help than the pinch-hitting Josh Schache is required.

Medical room: Good news on the injury front, with running defender Jason Johannisen likely to be available for the first time in 2019. Key forward Tom Boyd, midfielder Lin Jong and ruckman Jackson Trengove should all feature at either VFL or AFL level. Lukas Webb made a successful return from a neck injury suffered halfway through last season with 24 disposals in the VFL.

Verdict: Johannisen straight back in having recovered from his ankle injury, and Williams is required to combat Collingwood's mid-sized forward brigade. Richards needs to rediscover his best, Lewis Young makes way for Williams. - Paul Bastin