While everyone is going Cartman style banging doors and desks, lets try to reflect on this season as a whole in a calm and collected manner.
What started as an unquestionable disaster - like a boat capsizing in the Pacific Ocean - the club and players turned the season around after the Carlton loss. Despite this though, the side and coaches have been unable to counter the Hawthorn gameplan.
Looking forward to 2018 we need to find a way to counter teams that play possession football. Waving the white flag when it happens won’t help anyone. If Longmire doesn’t have the ability to change, we need to get someone in there to help. A fresh perspective could be a good thing to challenge the established ideas.
This is my first of three articles, where I run the ruler over our players, breaking them into groups that I consider the top tier, middle tier and depth/youth players.
This report focuses on the first tier - the best players at the club.
Top tier players
Buddy Franklin had a wonderful end to the year and many congratulations on an All-Australian selection and the Coleman medal, but he was nowhere near his best.
Whether he came back carrying a niggle, I’m not sure but he looked a bit slower than usual. Don’t get me wrong he still contributed and tried his hardest, but I’d only give him a 7/10 season.
Josh Kennedy what more can be said. Every single year I marvel at him and this year as a captain he excelled. There were games that without him we flat out would have lost. His professionalism is unquestioned and his performances were simply outstanding. How he wasn’t in the AA side has many mystified.
Luke Parker is an interesting one to read. Stats wise you’d say “boy he had a great year didn’t he”. Then again in big games he failed to deliver more often or not. We do forget however that he is young still, and sometimes we expect too much from our young midfielders. He needs a good pre season to kick on and thrive.
Dan Hannerbery has had a wonderful year in patches, but he has looked like he was carrying OP (osteitis pubis) at times. A good pre-season could be just what the doctor ordered for him.
Dane Rampe is elite and it is zero wonder why as soon as he came back we actually started to get some run and drive out of defensive 50. A favorite of many, he’s done himself no harm this year and aside from the semi final (very ordinary matchup from Horse), he beat his opponents all year long.
Heath Grundy has a fantastic season as a stopper. Would have been in contention for the All-Australian spot, and our form in the first 6 games may have hindered his chances.
Overall our elite players as a whole had some wonderful seasons, but they unfortunately had some down periods, which typified our season as a whole. However, one cannot doubt their professionalism, commitment and leadership to the Sydney Swans in 2017. Personally I’m looking forward to all of them coming back in 2018, injury free and refreshed. I have no doubt these players can get us a Premiership in 2018.
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