One of week of byes completed. Although the ladder is all over the place with six teams playing one game less than the other 12, the top teams are starting to separate themselves from their competition.
As we look back on an unpredictable round of footy, we rank where each team sits midway through the competition.
1. West Coast (-)
Taking a week off due to the bye, no team did enough to overthrow the big birds as the number one team in the AFL.
The Swans must be feeling good as they prepare to face the league-best West Coast Eagles on Friday night. Handing the Saints the worst loss of their season, the Swans looked unstoppable as they looked to be running circles around their opposition. Buddy was dominant and looks to be finding form after kicking 4.4.
3. Richmond (-1)
The Tigers may be battling with complacency as well as other AFL teams at this point of the season. Following a premiership and a dominant start, it’s hard to keep the fire in the guts of Tiger’s players. Only managing to score 58 points, the Tigers have now lost 2 of their last 4 games and could possibly face back to back losses as they take on the Cats this Sunday.
4. Geelong Cats (+1)
The Cats came into the game with many doubters and left it with a lot of believers. Facing one of the hottest teams in the competition, the Cats needed to show up to be regarded as serious contenders this year. Tom Hawkins played as they needed him to and Gary Ablett Ablett took over as if he was wearing the number 29.
5. Collingwood (+2)
The Pies have been on fire in recent weeks. Winning eight of their last 10 games, the Pies have forced their way into contention for a top four spot. Their running game seems to be unmatched as their slew of young guns seem to want it more than everyone they go up against.
6. Melbourne (-3)
Coming off such a hot-streak it was surprising to see the Dees get decimated in the second half of the game on the Queen’s Birthday. It seemed as though a few of their key players took the day off with the rest of Victoria. Undoubtedly, not the result they wanted heading into their bye.
7. North Melbourne (-1)
The Kangaroos put up a fight against the Cats but unfortunately couldn’t hold on as they let the Cats run away in the last quarter. Not what they wanted heading into the bye, but six wins in their last 10 games is definitely something they could work off of.
8. Port Adelaide (+1)
Taking on the reigning premiers, many believed Port Adelaide wouldn’t be able to match with the Tigers. The Power came out all guns blazing and led for most of the game. A dominant performance by many key players showed the Power are here to contend.
9. Greater Western Sydney (+1)
Following their poor start to the season, the Giants are finally starting to pick up some momentum. After a big win against Adelaide, the Giants came out with the same fire and dominated in every aspect of the game against Gold Coast.
10. Adelaide (-2)
Adelaide lost their third straight game over the weekend. Unfortunately, they haven’t been able to field their team at full strength all season, but a team vying for contention needs to be able to overcome that. Adelaide may have been a team looking for the bye in order to re-group, but they’re going to have to wait a week before they’re blessed with a week off.
11. Hawthorn (-)
Another one of the four teams that had a bye, they’ve kept their position at 11.
12. Essendon (-)
The Bombers picked up a win over the weekend but it came in an ‘ugly’ game of footy. Both teams lacking skill on the day, the game was filled with fumbles and poorly executed plays. Both teams kicked over 12 points, many of which should definitely have been goals. Had the Bombers been playing a good Brisbane squad, they may have given up the easy four points.
13. Western Bulldogs (-)
The Bulldogs had a bye, but face a big chance to drop in these rankings as they look to face Port Adelaide and sit above the Dockers who picked up a win in round 12.
14. Fremantle (-)
The Dockers were without captain Nat Fyfe and big man Aaron Sandilands but managed to put together a stellar effort as they beat the Crows. The Dockers will face the Blues this Saturday and look to pick up momentum and propel them in contention for a top eight spot.
15. Brisbane (-)
Dropped a chance to pick up four points against an Essendon squad who struggled over the weekend. Nonetheless, star defender Harris Andrews shined and gave the Brisbane faithful a lot to be excited for in the future.
16. St Kilda (-)
The Saints have now lost nine of their last 10 games and picked only two points in the other. They were dominated by the Swans from the first quarter, and showed no signs of making an effort to stay in the game. A lot needs to change for the Saints before they look to make finals.
17. Gold Coast (-)
The Suns suffered a 108-point loss at the hands of the Giants. Suffering six straight losses, the Suns are not doing what they need to in order to entice big name free-agent Tom Lynch to stay.
18. Carlton (-)
Only Carlton’s second week this season where they didn’t lose a game, unfortunately it’s because they had a bye and not that they’ve won their second game.