June 28, 2022

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The marvel packets of AFL in 2022 — from Will Brodie and Paddy McCartin to Jai Newcombe and Patrick Lipinski

7 min read

The refreshing factor about futi is that it’s unpredictable.

Groups and gamers can revel in dips in shape in addition to unexpected bursts.

What issues is how and why, in addition to who.

For instance, the truth that in just right form Patrick Cripps has returned to his sensible report this season isn’t a marvel.

The truth that his Carlton teammate Matt Kennedy has long past from nearly a minor participant to resurrecting the Blues and signing a brand new three-year contract is indisputably the case.

So, who haven’t we predicted to seriously beef up their recreation in 2022?

That is under no circumstances a whole record, however learn on for one of the most actual surprises within the first part of the season.

Will Brodie (Fremantle)

Brody was once decided on 9th general within the 2016 AFL Draft, considered one of 4 top-10 alternatives via the Suns. Of those, simplest two remained: Ben Ainsworth and Jack Bowes.

Brody was once a promising midfielder, however he by no means appeared to be in a position to carry onto his spot with the Suns.

Will Brodie’s skill to obtain contested balls and hyperlink up with Jordan Clarke, David Mundy and others places Freo’s warring parties to a standstill.(Getty Photographs: Paul Kane)

He simplest performed 25 video games in 5 seasons with Carrara prior to being traded to the Dockers in a one-sided deal to Fremantle.

Trainer Stuart Dew mentioned it was once a case of the Gold Coast having a powerful hand within the heart with skipper Took Miller, Matt Rowell and Noah Anderson.

However the deal appears to be like much more lopsided now that Brody has been given the chance to paintings at Docker and run together with her—actually. If any individual started to doubt his qualities, then not at all now.

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The brand new No. 17 Freo is a tackle-ball beast, averaging 13.50 contested possessions in step with recreation and six.83 clearances in step with recreation. Either one of the ones numbers are upper than Nat Fife’s averages in his 15 video games final yr.

Brodie has cast sensible partnerships with fellow midfielders like David Mundy, Andrew Braishaw, to not point out working backs like Jordan Clarke.

Such a lot in order that when Fife was once requested the place he would slot in when he returned to the primary group this weekend after a protracted harm hiatus, he indicated that his position, a minimum of first of all, can be principally within the ahead line, as a result of that Freo’s midfield was once so well gelled.

If Brody can stay going like this, he’ll unharness Fife to be a disruptive participant at the flooring and stay the Dockers within the combine for the highest two and up.

Paddy McCartin (Sydney)

A Sydney Football League defender reaches out to look at the ball as a group of opposing players turn around to watch him take possession of the ball.
Paddy McCartin’s calmness, bodily presence and interception skill had been crucial to the Swans’ enlargement this season.(Getty Photographs/AFL Footage: Matt King)

We knew Paddy McCartin may just play within the AFL, however we simply didn’t know if he may just play within the AFL once more.

A former primary pick out for St Kilda, his occupation was once derailed via repeated concussions and he left the Saints to rebuild his existence and well being.

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Soccer gave the impression a ways away. Now the prize ahead is again and thriving within the Sydney Swans. Any other marvel was once his new position as a key quarterback for the Swans in conjunction with his brother Tom.

It’s been a risky season for Sydney, however key wins over Richmond and Melbourne have saved the Swans 8-4, in no small section because of Paddy’s defensive presence.

He ranks 8th within the AFL in steals in 2022, has proven composure within the again six for the Swans, and is 3rd in disposal potency at the group at below 82 p.c.

He retained a big bodily presence in spite of his historical past of concussions and his fresh concern of Hawthorn.

If he can keep within the park for the second one part of the season, it is going to be a large plus for the Swans’ protection.

Tyson Stangle (Geelong)

The Geelong AFL player has the ball under his arm and looks to the left while running away from the GWS player.
Geelong has benefited no longer simplest from Tyson Stangle’s punches this season, but in addition from his velocity and evasiveness.(Getty Photographs: Mark Kolbe)

Tyson Stangle got here to Geelong, most definitely his final probability within the AFL, after a nasty begin to his occupation.

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He confirmed promise at VFL degree for Richmond however by no means were given an opportunity to growth, then a business to the Ravens ended in 13 video games in two seasons prior to a chain of off-field offenses ended his tenure on the membership.

Now on the Cats, Stangle is flourishing in 2022. On a group with two very sturdy key forwards, the 23-year-old controlled to play a devastating small ahead position that noticed him end 14th within the Coleman Medal with 23 targets.

He’s additionally out of the highest 10 within the AFL in general engagement issues with 78, in conjunction with Sydney’s unhealthy pairing Luke Parker and Chad Warner.

His velocity, evasiveness and talent to hit the ball, in addition to his sense of goal, make him a treasured addition to a Geelong group poised for some other large flag problem within the final part of the yr.

Jay Newcomb (Hawthorn)

Jai Newcomb didn’t make a lot of an have an effect on in his first season at Hawthorne, spending restricted time at the flooring and enjoying seven video games for a group nearer to the ground of the ladder.

Hawthorn's AFL player holds the ball in an attempt to change direction as the Brisbane defender watches.
Jai Newcomb has simplest performed 18 video games within the AFL, however the large Hawk is already arduous to forestall.(Getty Photographs/AFL Footage: Dylan Burns)

Some development might be anticipated from his first complete season. What has took place since then has no longer took place.

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Part a season within the books, Newcomb is a favourite for the Emerging Celebrity, and he’s a large explanation why the Hawks, who’ve been prompt via many to get a wood spoon, will end up to be tricky warring parties in 2022.

Newcomb’s bodily and lively performances have been each spectacular and a laugh for Hawk fanatics and neutrals alike.

The Hawks could also be in restoration mode below new trainer Sam Mitchell, however the 20-year-old isn’t anticipated to steer or height 3 on his group in lots of classes.

If truth be told, he’s within the height 20 within the AFL in 3 ways – tackles, assists and meters scored.

Of the 14 gamers main him in statistic meters, the common collection of video games performed is 136.9.

Newcomb will play for the Hawks this weekend in opposition to the Dockers for the nineteenth recreation of a week-by-week occupation.

Patrick Lipinski (Collingwood)

A Collingwood AFL player runs in a 50m arc and looks up as he prepares to hit the ball.
Magpie rookie Patrick Lipinski become a mischievous participant, developing losses and scoring issues.(AAP: Rob Prezioso)

The upward thrust and upward thrust of 1 blonde ahead will have made headlines in Collingwood in 2022, however there’s a quieter a success participant who abruptly turns into a key participant within the 6th season of his occupation.

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Patrik Lipinski spent 5 seasons with the Western Bulldogs and his position and collection of video games has dwindled to the purpose that he has made a business request to the Magpies on the finish of 2021.

He noticed one thing within the Canines, however in a group with an all-star midfield, his probabilities of changing into a participant for each and every fit have been slender.

Lipinski had a recent delivery within the Pies and has confirmed himself to be a just right rookie, a great are compatible for brand new trainer Craig McRae’s extra attacking and dynamic enjoying taste.

Lipinski’s numbers are on the upward thrust, however the primary factor in his recreation is forcing losses, averaging 5 in step with recreation, and managing the 40’s offense at 5.98 issues in step with recreation, 2nd simplest to Jordan de Goya.

He was once simply what the physician ordered for The 40, and Collingwood was once simply what Lipinski had to jump-start his occupation.

Matt Kennedy (Carlton)

A Carlton AFL player smiles and clenches his fist in celebration as his teammate comes over to congratulate him on his goal.
Matt Kennedy was once one of the vital luck elements for Carlton in 2022.(Getty Photographs: Robert Cianflone)

It’s been an exhilarating yr for the Blues, with the coming of supervisor Michael Voss bettering the group in numerous tactics.

Earlier than the beginning of the season, the point of interest was once on midfield recruits Adam Serra of Fremantle and George Hewett of the Swans.

However the marvel of the season was once any individual who was once already at the record: Matt Kennedy.

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