The Buzz – Round 16’s burning questions: Who to VC/C, bargain buys & PODs

In Round 15 we had a mammoth of high scores from premium selections which saw SuperCoach scores of up to 2400 being the “average”. Heck I even scored 2467 and only went up 300 odd spots!


But less about me and more about you. Today we’ll first delve into some of the Twitter questions and mainly discuss how you should go abouts picking your VC and C options and finally like always we’ll sneak in my favourite buys of the week which may include a few PODs.

Mailbag Twitter Questions

“Who would you VC/C this week?” @harrisondb_

This was the first question I wanted to answer purely since there is so much to unpack and quite frankly the answer varies from team to team, not everyone owns the likes of Marcus Bontempelli and/or Jackson Macrae but are they the best option to pick this week, that’s what we need to find out. 

But how should we go about picking our VC and C anyways? Many coaches should be aware of the captain’s loophole but if you are not I’ll give a brief explanation. Essentially you will be putting the VC on a player who has an “early game” and your captain will still be a player who you want as that double points option but will ideally play after your VC finishes their game.

This essentially gives you a double chance at who you want as your double points option because say your VC scores 150, why not throw your C on a non-playing player and bank that score (remember to put the emergency on your player afterwards).

Anyways, I base my captaincy selection on a few factors: recent performance(s) against that team, how well they score at that ground, their current form and whether the opposition have a “tagger” that may hamper their scoring output. So let’s look deeper and see who ticks all four of these boxes and who potentially could be a trap to pick as a captain selection. 

Best VC and C options

Max Gawn (AF $810k SC $623k RUCK)

Last 3 scores vs GWS (AF/SC): 135/163, 103/150, 132/149, 

Last 3 scores @ MCG (AF/SC): 97/103, 105/117, 108/112, 

3 Round average (AF/SC): 108/121.3

Defensive tagger to worry about: No

While he does not have the most insane form recently, Max Gawn would still be my number one VC or C option just because of how dominant he is against the Giants. While his 150 and 149 were against a very old Shane Mumford he’s still shown he can score big with a 163 (SC) against Matt Flynn in Round 3.

The Dees aren’t exactly playing their elite best right now but neither are the Giants but this could be a game where Gawn goes massive and really asserts his dominance. The great thing about Gawn is that his stats are like as if he’s another midfielder especially when he has 20+ touches but you add on the hit-outs to advantage he provides and the contested marks, he’s in for a big day at the ‘G on Saturday afternoon and looks prime for a big game after a run of quiet ones (by his standards at least).

Marcus Bontempelli (AF $878k SC $709k MID)

Last 3 scores vs North (AF/SC): 81/82, 45/55, 101/118, 

Last 3 scores @ Marvel (AF/SC) : 120/125, 138/159, 131/155,

3 Round average (AF/SC): 129/149.3

Defensive tagger to worry about: Probably not

The Bont is probably the most in-form midfielder in the AFL and as expected has shot to having the second highest 3-round average in both formats. He is also ranked 3rd in total points in AF as well as first in SC, so why isn’t he the number one option on the list of captains then?

Well as you can see from his last few scores against North, they do plan around him well and can limit his scoring. While they don’t directly tag him they do try and rough him up and the dogs have so many other players that can carry the load for them in the absence of Bontempelli, his last 2 scores against North have come in very convincing wins. He still will be a safe pick because of his insane form right now but he does come with a captain beware symbol. 

Dayne Zorko (AF $806k SC $649k M/F)

Last 3 scores vs Adelaide (AF/SC): 31/47*, 118/121, 95/106

Last 3 scores @ venue (AF/SC): Venue TBC

3 Round average (AF/SC): 128.3/152.7

Defensive tagger to worry about: Probably not

*Injury affected.

Unfortunately, the venue for Brisbane’s game against Adelaide is unclear, thus I have not got an exact venue to base my last three scores off. Since the Freo vs Carlton game is likely to be played down in Geelong they could be playing up in Ballarat, if they do play there his record is not fantastic with a 70/71 and 134/114 in his last 2 games there. Regardless he is currently the highest three-round average in SC and is the third highest three-round averages in AF which makes him also very much in form.

Adelaide, while they do have a tagger in Ben Keays, do not seem to use him to truly negate the opposition. His record against Adelaide is decent with an injury affected score last year pulling down that average but what makes him a top captain option is the fact that he doesn’t need a heap of the ball to score massive as he accumulates his points from tackles, score involvements and marks of late. He just needs to make sure he is disciplined but lately he’s shown he’s more than capable of doing that. 

There are plenty of options I would also like to consider too but if you own these guys then they will also make a great captaincy or vice captaincy option as well: Jack Steele, Darcy Parish, Jack Macrae and Touk Miller.

VC and C options you might want to avoid

Clayton Oliver (AF $775k SC $629k MID)

Last 3 scores vs GWS (AF/SC): 80/67, 89/87, 62/53, 

Last 3 scores @ MCG (AF/SC) : 93/105, 110/140, 102/125, 

3 Round average (AF/SC): 108/121.3

Defensive tagger to worry about: Big Yes

I don’t think anyone likes it when their premium has to face Matt De Boer, in previous years it was Ben Jacobs and Brent Mcaffer and in recent times it’s De Boer ruining our weekend when he shuts down our captaincy option. But this one is a no brainer, he went to Oliver back in Round 3, he’s gone to him in the last 3 games and completely negated his influence on the game, don’t put the C on him unless you want disappointment come Monday morning. 

Dustin Martin (AF $629k SC $484k M/F)

Last 3 scores vs GC (AF/SC): 69/92, 58/78, 85/91, 

Last 3 scores @ Marvel (AF/SC) : 93/121, 110/91, 54/81, 

3 Round average (AF/SC): 96.6/102

Defensive tagger to worry about: Possibly

On paper Martin playing for a Richmond team looking to bounce back from a poor stretch of form against a woefully out of form Gold Coast team has all the makings of a big score especially under the lights of Marvel Stadium? Well, he doesn’t exactly have a Fantasy record playing against the Suns. Even though both sides do have a depleted midfield he has not really showcased the true form we hoped to see him return to back in 2017. He remains a popular choice because he’s always a shoe in to being a top forward for many sides but it’s probably not a wise choice to slap the VC or C on him. 

Ben Cunnington (AF $717k SC $592k MID)

Last 3 scores vs GC (AF/SC): 71/92, 26/50*, 105/99, 

Last 3 scores @ Marvel (AF/SC): 76/113, 115/142, 76/66, 

3 Round average (AF/SC): 110/121.7

Defensive tagger to worry about: No

*injury affected game

I’m not worried about any team putting a tag on this man because he finds the footy so well, it’s more to do with the fact they’re playing the Bulldogs who conceded the least disposals to opposition teams, we’ve seen in recent weeks Cunnington play absolutely out of his skin recording a three-round average of 110 (AF) and 121.7 (SC) it will be difficult for him to keep that up against a Bulldogs outfit who will essentially ball hog for all 4 quarters. His record against the Dogs isn’t too flash either although his 71(AF) and 92(SC) at the start of the year is respectable given he’d just come of injury, but is he a captaincy option, not this week at the very least.

“Why is there hype on De Goey?? M.Kennedy or someone else a better option at low 500s?” @Timothy_J13

This feels like an AFL Fantasy question. The hype on De Goey is that when he is given opportunities in the midfield, he can genuinely be a handy scorer for your team, in the past three matches De Goey’s centre bounce attendances have increased dramatically since the start of the year and this has resulted in improved scoring on his behalf. While he did miss last week due to suspension, he may find himself with slightly less midfield time especially given Taylor Adams is back in the team, but other players could be shifted out of that midfield mix if De Goey is their X-Factor out the middle.

Do I think he is a better option than Kennedy? Yes, I do. Kennedy currently is replacing the role that Will Setterfield was doing where he plays a bit of inside mid and a bit on the wing and with Setterfield not far from returning, Kennedy could find himself out of the team especially if he drops one poor game.

Another option around that low $500k price could be Jake Stringer. Since returning he’s scored 136 and 97, while that 136 is probably an anomaly because he’s not going to kick four goals every week, a significant increased midfield role has now resulted in back to back weeks of 24+ disposals but buyer beware, Shiel is not far from returning and may shake up that midfield rotation 

“Thoughts on Bailey Smith?” @BriersSpencer

A good-looking fella, who is significantly under-priced but there’s a reason for that, he started the season out on a bang with a 123 but since then he’s found it difficult to find the ball consistently when playing out on a wing role. Since Round 1 his highest score (in SuperCoach at least) has come from Round 9, 10 and 15, the common factor from this? He spent half of the time playing as a true inside midfielder. This is why I am worried, while we know when he plays that true ball winning midfielder role he can score well as documented from last season, he gets left out because the Dogs have so many good inside midfielders that do the job just as well. I would be conservative on trying to get him simply because we know that Luke Beveridge loves to fling the magnets around whenever he feels like, heck even Caleb Daniel got some midfield minutes too (for his scoring benefit to be fair).


Bargain buys and PODs

Like always I want to go through some of the best bargains you can pick up especially if you can’t afford the uber premium selections, these players will also hold a low ownership so they could assist you in winning your league or give you an advantage in rising up in the rankings.

Nick Vlastuin (AF $528k SC $431k DEF)

History depicts that he’s not an elite scorer in either format with a career high of 78.9 (AF) and 91.2 (SC) in 2019, but like always we just need him to keep up his current scoring. He’s slowly returned to some really solid form and that has shown with back-to-back tons (SC). He plays a critical role in that Richmond backline being that third tall and taking plenty of intercept marks, while he isn’t the designated kick in taker, he still can find plenty of the ball and the cheap kicks and marks in the backline do boost his scoring a lot. At his current price and in a very low percentage of teams he presents a lot of value and will be a handy POD for your backlines. 

Paul Seedsman (AF $714k SC $521k MID)

This is definitely a weird and wacky option, but hear me out. Rory Sloane is touted to be missing the rest of the season due to a finger injury, earlier in the year from rounds 4 to 8 Seedsman was one of 2 players that filled in Sloane’s midfield minutes (Darcy Fogarty was the other).

In that time frame he averaged 101.2 (AF) and 105 (SC). When Sloane returned he did lose those midfield minutes and has been playing more out on a wing which still provided good scoring as he currently has a three-round average of 107.6 (AF) and 118.3. Adelaide’s fast paced ball movement suits the rangy wingman and while he isn’t a household name as a true in and out midfielder, his excellent ball use and ability to hit the scoreboard makes him an attractive option.

Given also the fact that teams are going to be shutting down Rory Laird first (as seen by the Carlton game), this may help Seedsman in the back-half of the year. At less than 1% ownership he could be an absolute gem for your midfield in the run home. 

Rowan Marshall (AF $601k SC $464k F/R)

It may be weird to put a block who has had three games of sub 70 and has only played 6 games this year but Marshall could be one of the steals in the forward line. While everyone and their dog is looking to trade Patrick Dangerfield in as a forward option this week (and for pretty good reason might I add). Marshall, while under limited minutes, still squeezed out a 43 (AF) /68 (SC), so there are plenty of positives to ponder especially considering he is capable of banging out 100+ scores.

He might not be one to bring in this week, but he is very much at a discount price with a low ownership. We saw what he can do in 2019 where he turned into one of the best forwards in SC. Can he do that for the final handful of games?

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