We’re back with this week’s edition of Start or Sit, with more options provided than ever before. Early season matches are crucial in Ultimate Footy, as banking those wins can help coaches overcome the inevitable mid-to-late season resting from AFL clubs. With plenty of solid scorers worthy of a start, it’s time to get stuck in.
Seedsman is a must start, having begun this season off extremely well. He has found his spot on the wing in Adelaide’s team, pushing David Mackay well and truly out of that permanent position. Seedsman has scored 86, 92 and 107 to start off 2018, and this match against his former club on Friday night should suit him nicely.
Despite a lot of talk about how good Finlayson has been, he only has one starter-worthy fantasy score in his opening three games. One issue has been giving away five free kicks overall, which is limiting his fantasy output. Playing against smaller Fremantle opposition should help the tall rebounder, with his ability to take intercept marks sure to lead him to an 80+ score at Manuka Oval.
Another rookie features in the list of defenders to start, with Ed Richards being one to seriously consider this week. He looked great against the Bombers, finishing with 17 disposals, seven marks and five tackles, resulting in 85 fantasy points. Richards has a tougher task against the Swans, but he should see enough of the ball across half back to post a reasonable score.
Williams is coming off a strong 114-point performance against the Bombers and will be confident in his abilities heading into this week. The key to his fantasy game is the amount of marks he takes. If that is eliminated from his game, he won’t score as well (see Round 1). Sydney aren’t the type of team to allow cheap marks, so expect Williams’ score to fall.
Don’t fall for the two 90s Geary got to start the season. St Kilda’s captain isn’t a fantasy defender, with a career average settling in the mid-60s. Take into account the fact he averages 53.6 in his seven games against Geelong and it’s a no-brainer.
This fantasy format doesn’t suit Wilson as much as other competitions do due to the lack of reward for effectiveness. It means Wilson’s Round 2 century was an aberration, built from 20 kicks and 11 marks. His former team will shut him down this weekend.
Coaches are probably starting Howe on-field anyway, however, this matchup against Melbourne should be particularly beneficial to his fantasy output. Howe can be prolific as a tagger and damaging on the outside as a running wingman. Tagging Nathan Jones would be the perfect situation for all parties.
Hartung has averaged 80 points since the start of 2017 which would surprise many people. Having finally found a secure place in a best 22 in the AFL, Hartung is a key running option on the wing for North Melbourne. He dropped off in the second half of the loss to Melbourne, making him keen to make up for this effort. Don’t ignore his astonishing 102-point average against Carlton, albeit from just two games.
The numbers are trending upwards for the veteran who appears to have secured his spot in West Coast’s best 22 for the time being. The 28-year-old comes up against the Suns, who he averages 98 against in seven matches against them. He’s worth a flier for the final midfield spots on your field.
It was an encouraging return from injury for Hopper, who ended up taking Tim Taranto’s midfield time. The 21-year-old is bound to breakout at some stage and he just needs to string some games together. A match-up against a tough Fremantle midfield is something Hopper will thrive on.
Redden has been disappointing so far in 2018, having been all the rage in the preseason. Perhaps this match against the Suns will ignite his season given his prolific historical scoring against Gold Coast. In his last four matches against them, Redden has averaged 108 points. He’s worth another go.
Regardless of whether you’re a coach in a standard or keeper league, Jack Graham has become a popular final midfield starter in many teams. The 20-year-old has only played eight games, however, and has posted a score in the 80s on three occasions. He doesn’t get enough of the ball in general, and is best suited to being a role player for the Tigers in his second season. Don’t get sucked in by the (warranted) hype around Graham, he’ll likely score in the 50s against Brisbane.
Greenwood is already one of the most underappreciated players in the competition, with his ability to be elite in contested situations the standout feature of his game. Like Wilson, he is far better suited to SuperCoach, where these things get rewarded. Greenwood’s scores are likely to hover in the 60-70 range for much of the season. In his only match against the Magpies, Greenwood managed just 53 fantasy points.
If you were smart enough to pick Sinclair following the injury to Sam Naismith, you’ll be well ahead of your competition. Sinclair has been brilliant to start the season, averaging 101 points per game. The 28-year-old took full advantage of GWS’ ruck woes in Round 3, putting together a huge total. He’ll back it up again this week, playing against Tim English.
I’ll give Bellchambers one more chance, given he’ll be playing against another inexperienced ruckman on Sunday afternoon. The Power have had to be creative with their ruck stocks since Paddy Ryder went down, conceding plenty of fantasy points to opposition ruckmen. Lock him in.
The time to start Lycett appears to be over, with Nic Naitanui looking fitter and taking more ruck contests. The 25-year-old posted a fantastic 112 in Round 2, but has otherwise failed to impress in fantasy playing as a forward. He shouldn’t be started if you can avoid it.
Jordan De Goey
De Goey is back in for the Magpies and is a definite starter in Ultimate Footy teams. He’ll get that lucrative inside midfield role due to Taylor Adams’ hamstring injury, and he’ll rest forward, allowing for some serious scoreboard impact. Forget his off-field indiscretions when talking about fantasy, this is the year De Goey breaks out, and he’ll start off well in a tough match against the Crows.
Impey has moved to the Hawks and turned himself into a nice little option for Ultimate Footy forward lines. Coaches look for stability with the final spots in their team and Impey averaging 70 is perfect for that role. He’s playing all over the ground which is a positive sign, and Melbourne’s Neville Jetta will have other targets in mind. Expect a 75+ score, which is worth starting with.
It seems strange to suggest fielding a player fresh off a 19-point performance, but the defensive role he played last week shouldn’t carry into a match against the Bulldogs. Hewett is prolific in his own right and should return to the 80+ point range with a little freedom. Expect him to bounce back nicely.
Watts hasn’t set the world on fire this season, however he has generally been a nice fantasy scorer for Ultimate Footy. A match against Essendon this week, however, doesn’t overly suit the former Demon, who averages just 65 against the Bombers in nine games. Watts is can be avoided if possible.
Jack hasn’t been a great fantasy option since the start of 2017 and despite gaining forward eligibility, he is now a run-of-the-mill pick. Round 4 sees the Swans come up against the Bulldogs, a team who Jack has recently struggled against. His last four match against the ‘Dogs has seen him average 71, 16 points below his career average against the same opposition. He’s one that can be faded this week.
Walker hasn’t looked fully fit since returning to senior footy, however he has still managed to kick seven goals in two games. Adelaide’s captain has always been an inconsistent scorer, yet is still seen as a good F3/F4 Ultimate Footy option as a rule. Collingwood is his worst opponent statistically speaking, so it’s best to bench him in Round 4.
Best of luck with this week’s fixtures and as always, Twitter and Facebook feedback is appreciated and encouraged.