A two game slate on a Friday night is an interesting change, but these are interesting times. It’s my first AFL preview and I’m looking forward to playing for some nice prizes on both Draftstars and DraftKings.


In addition to previews for each and every slate this season, Daily Fantasy Rankings will continue with our AFL Resources page. This section provides you all the data you need to build your best lineups. It includes daily cheat sheets for both Draftstars and DraftKings, Player Correlation tables, Player Out tables, Scores Against tables, Tagging information, statistical breakdowns and much more!



Carlton vs Hawthorn at Optus Stadium (CAR -8.5, 125.5) (1740 AEST Bounce)

Essendon vs Brisbane at Metricon Stadium (BNE -14.5, 124.5) (2010 AEST Bounce)



Both of these games feature teams going in opposite directions, with Carlton and Brisbane firmly in the group of teams on their way to the top, while Hawthorn and Essendon are constantly criticised for various deficiencies. Carlton in particular are an interesting proposition with 5 of their 8 games being decided by 7 points or less, and only one big win to speak of against the volatile Bulldogs. I won’t be at all surprised if Hawthorn has something to say about those odds, ageing side or not. Hawks, Bombers and Lions all have plenty of team changes for this week, headlined by Dylan Shiel and Jono Ceglar back in, and Daniel Rich and Conor McKenna out. Hawthorn and Essendon possibly look better, Lions look slightly worse, and Carlton look fairly settled with just one like-for-like change.



In line with the odds, the fantasy trends point to Carlton and Brisbane stacks for this slate. Hawthorn and Essendon give up more 80+ games than anyone else. Hawthorn are well known for giving up plenty of those points to backs, but are also top 5 targets against both mids and forwards. Essendon can be targeted with mids and forwards also, as well as being the top target for rucks. It goes without saying that Carlton and Lions stacks are going to be very popular.

FWD's: Following the trends, we want to find some Carlton and Brisbane forwards to take advantage. Matt Kennedy DS $9,690 / DK $5,500 was a popular play last week for his 91, and although he’s playing mostly forward instead of midfield, he has plenty of upside again at this price. David Cunningham $9,120 / $4,300 is in a similar position and is likely to be much lower owned, but showed a massive ceiling with 99 points earlier this season. Brisbane has several forwards that can go big on their day. Charlie Cameron $9,500 / $5,200 is the team's focal point, and could easily kick a bag if things fall his way. Eric Hipwood $9,550 / $4,700 is much more volatile, but his ceiling is more than good enough at his price. 

However I am very interested in Cam Rayner's $9,830 / $4,800 upside in this matchup with the Dons. Rayner has been growing into himself before our very eyes, and although his role is still mostly forward, he’s been scoring just fine with more upside to come.


MID's: Again we are looking to target Carlton and Brisbane players. Will Setterfield $10,420 / $5,600 is one who has been averaging 70 recently while getting significant midfield opportunities, he’s still a very nice price for that output. Sam Walsh $12,400 / $6,100 has also been scoring much better lately, and is still cheap enough to be a strong play. Lachie Neale $19,090 / $9,700 and Jarrod Lyons $15,990 / $7,500 are too expensive to consider on this slate, so instead I have interest in Zac Bailey $9,760 / $5,700. Bailey has had two great scores in a row and could be popular, but beware that his floor is not good if things don’t go his way. 

For my pick, I’m going back to Hugh McLuggage $14,080 / $6,600 who had a few quiet weeks but showed us what he can do with consecutive hundreds earlier in the season. Essendon are currently 3rd in the league in conceding fantasy scoring to midfielders and I am taking the discounted salary compared to Neale and Lyons.


DEF’s: Backs against Hawthorn, you’ve heard it a thousand times. The thing is, it works, so we’re doing it again. Sam Docherty $14,580 / $7,200 and Kade Simpson $11,360 / $5,300 are the options up the top, but I think we can find much better value elsewhere... Even more interesting is the collection of cheap key defenders, the true secret sauce against the Hawks. Lachie Plowman $8,200 / $4,100, Jacob Weitering $8,010 / $3,700, Liam Jones $6,980 / $3,200 and Tom Williamson $6,770 / $3,900 are nobody's idea of good fantasy players, but they are all capable of the 60+ spike game that can win you this slate. Choose one or two of them and get ready to watch those cheap +6s accumulate.

For the Defence, I am looking at Sam Petrevski-Seton’s $9,930 / $4,800 box scores which look like an actual roller coaster! The trend says it’s time for a down week but I think the best matchup in the league will take care of that nonsense. If he can repeat last week's 70-odd, that is more than enough. First in for me!


RK's: What a mess! Not one of these teams has a solo ruck, with Ben McEvoy, Callum Moore, and debutants Sam Draper and Connor Ballenden muddying the waters for the #1 rucks. The best I can do is to turn to Oscar McInerney $9,070 / $5,600 who should be the Lions first option in the softest ruck matchup in the AFL. Jonathan Ceglar $11,580 / $6,300 also has a nice matchup against Marc Pittonet $9,950 / $5,600, but the unknown role of Ben McEvoy $8,600 / $4,800 is a big concern. 

I am taking a punt on highly rated debutant Sam Draper $5,000 / $3,000 at the minimum price. Draper may not be the worst option, where a poor 35 points might be enough to match the value of the other horrible ruck options.


Final Word: I’ve focused heavily on Carlton and Brisbane players, but we all know that the bookies are often wrong, so don’t be afraid to explore some Hawks or Bombers if you think an upset is on the cards. Good Luck!


Dragon's Suggested Draftstars Team

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