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Pre-Draft Depth Charts: Adelaide

Andy Otten supports an imposing cast of key pillars up forward. (Sept. 29, 2017 - Source: Cameron Spencer/AFL Media/Getty Images AsiaPac)

Key Forwards:

Taylor Walker Mitch McGovern Josh Jenkins Tom Lynch Andy Otten Harry Dear Elliott Himmelberg

No issues here. The Crows have ignored the trend of smaller forward lines in the AFL. Considering the talent available and the mobility of Lynch and McGovern, they can afford to keep doing so as long as Josh Jenkins can regain some consistency. Despite their being no immediate need, you would like to see Himmelberg beef up and take the next step in 2018, while Harry Dear would benefit from a permanent return to the forward line at SANFL level.

Key Defenders:

Daniel Talia Kyle Hartigan Alex Keath Andy Otten Jake Kelly Tom Doedee Kyle Cheney

Harry Dear Elliott Himmelberg

Still very healthy despite the departure of Jake Lever. Natural interceptors Alex Keath and Tom Doedee lead the battle for that vacant role while the likes of Andy Otten and Kyle Cheney provide reliable, experienced depth.

Still a superstar at 30 years of age, but is Eddie Betts the Crows’ only true small forward? (Sept. 21, 2017 - Source: Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images AsiaPac)

Small/General Forwards:

Eddie Betts Tom Lynch Hugh Greenwood Richard Douglas Riley Knight Wayne Milera Jordan Gallucci Myles Poholke Ben Jarman Matt Signorello Ben Davis

This list would obviously look a bit more potent with a Charlie Cameron or Steven Motlop on it. With Eddie Betts set to turn 31 before the start of the season and Troy Menzel delisted, you would like to see another genuine small forward here. If Ben Jarman spends more time closer to home, he could be the man.

Small/General Defenders:

Rory Laird Bryce Gibbs Brodie Smith ❌ Luke Brown Jake Kelly Tom Doedee Paul Seedsman Richard Douglas David Mackay Kyle Cheney Curtly Hampton Myles Poholke

This category is better analysed when split up further into lockdown defenders and rebounders. Brodie Smith leaves a significant hole, as we saw in September, and while there is no perfect replacement, there are a few viable options the club could go with. As for lockdown smalls, Luke Brown remains one of the best in the league defensively, while the likes of Jake Kelly and Tom Doedee have demonstrated an ability to play small effectively.

Inside Midfielders:

Rory Sloane Matt Crouch Bryce Gibbs Brad Crouch Rory Laird Hugh Greenwood Richard Douglas Curtly Hampton Cam Ellis-Yolmen Sam Gibson Riley Knight Myles Poholke

This time last year, this was seen as the most suspect area of the Adelaide list. Twelve months later, the emergence of Hugh Greenwood, revitalisation of Richard Douglas and continued improvement of the Crouch brothers have things looking much better. The addition of Bryce Gibbs is the cherry on top, making this group as powerful as it has looked since a guy named Patrick Dangerfield was a member.

Inside or outside the contest, Bryce Gibbs bolsters Adelaide’s midfield stocks significantly. (Oct. 18, 2017 - Source: Scott Barbour/Getty Images AsiaPac)

Outside Midfielders:

Bryce Gibbs Tom Lynch Brodie Smith ❌ Rory Atkins Richard Douglas Paul Seedsman Sam Gibson Riley Knight David Mackay Wayne Milera Curtly Hampton Jordan Gallucci Matt Signorello

Gibbs has a nice inside-outside balance to his game that will complement the Crows' troupe of true wingers like Atkins, Seedsman, Mackay and Milera nicely. A few of those guys need to take the next step and contribute more consistently to improve the look of this group, but there's a lot to like.


Sam Jacobs Reilly O'Brien Paul Hunter Josh Jenkins Harry Dear

The jury is out on whether Reilly O'Brien will be lead ruckman calibre at AFL level when Sauce Jacobs eventually hangs up the boots, but for now he's doing everything right and will continue to provide reliable backup if required. The recently re-signed, mature-bodied Paul Hunter ensures they go three-deep for genuine ruckman, while Josh Jenkins and Harry Dear are the archetypal pinch hitters. No issues here in the short term.

What they need:

With no glaring weaknesses here, the Crows can attack November the 24th without the temptation of straying from a "best talent available" policy. A boost to their inside depth and another true small forward wouldn't go astray, if we're nit-picking, but things are looking reasonably safe across the board at West Lakes. Keep an eye on in the coming weeks for our look at Port Adelaide’s depth charts.


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