MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 27: Sam Darcy of Vic Metro (C) celebrates a goal during the U19 trial match between Vic Metro and Vic Country on June 27, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Martin Keep/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Luke Beveridge's Western Bulldogs side experienced a heartbreaking end to their 2021 campaign after being whacked by the Demons in the second half of this year's decider.

Although the mood would be solemn around Whitten Oval, their foray back to the last Saturday in September isn't likely to be their last for a while considering the plethora of talent they have at their disposal.

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Their draft hand looks set to funnel directly into the capture of father-son prospect Sam Darcy, who is looking to place within the top three of this year's proceedings, however, there may be some wheeling and dealing done to keep them in the later rounds.

With the draft after their matched bid set to be an uneventful one, let's have a look at some possible scenarios for the Doggies.

Draft hand 

Picks: 23, 43, 44, 45, 52, 93
Draft points: 2148

The Dogs have one second round and a host of third-rounders to offer for Sam Darcy, with the final value for the tall set to be a maximum of 2013 points taking into account the discount for father-son priorities and the fact that he will likely go at Pick 2 on the night.

With this, the Bulldogs will have to give up their first five picks, leaving them with just Pick 93 to wield on the second night of the draft.

However, there is a chance that they may trade up with their later picks to ensure that their Pick 23 selection isn't included in the Darcy bid, with the Doggies potentially able to snag a second-rounder to cap off a good 2021 intake.

List needs 

A key defender:
The one spot on the field that punters see as the Doggies' Achilles heel is their back-six, with their rearguard at times during the year coming unstuck.

Although Bailey Dale had a breakout year which saw him claim his first All-Australian blazer, the fact of the matter is that another key defender beside him is needed - especially now that both Easton Wood and Lewis Young are no longer at the club.

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With only Zaine Cordy, Ryan Gardner and Alex Keath being the other tall options down in defence, a big-bodied backman with a good set of hands should be a target this draft night.

Ruckman:
It's been no secret that the Dogs are in dire need of a ruck, especially when Beveridge refused to ruck big man Tim English over defender Lewis Young at times this year.

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However, it seems these woes will be a thing of the past come Wednesday night, with the prodigious Sam Darcy set to walk through the doors at Whitten Oval for pre-season barring a miracle.

With Stef Martin back in the side, Darcy will be able to learn plenty from the former Lion as he aims to nail down a position in the Doggies' best 22.

Ideal recruits

Sam Darcy (key tall):
Surprise surprise, Sam Darcy is number one on this list.,

He will certainly be snapped up by the Doggies and could go on to achieve greatness status similar to that of his father at The Kennel.

The 18-year-old is a beast at either end of the field, with his ability to mark overhead and overall athleticism earning him top-three status.

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With the Giants set to go for him at Pick 2 over Nick Daicos, the Dogs will have to match him with a 20 per cent discount as a result of his father-son status.

With last year's Pick 1 Jamarra Ugle-Hagan still not having hit his straps quite yet for his side, Darcy is an additional key position prodigy that will have Dogs fans licking their lips.

Charlie Dean (defender): A potential slider that could very well fall into the Dogs' clutches is former Sandringham tall defender Charlie Dean.

The 20-year-old was overlooked in 2019's proceedings however has done an impressive job playing for Williamstown in the VFL throughout 2021.

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So outstanding were his displays in the second-tier competition that he was named as a defender in the VFL Team of the Year averaging 15.1 disposals and 7.3 marks per game - no mean feat for a potential draftee at all.

Dean may be overlooked by many clubs however the likes of Collingwood, St Kilda and Port Adelaide are sides that are rumoured to be interested in the mature ager's services.

Oscar Morrison (defender): This big man from St Josephs in Geelong has impressed recruiters with his intercept ability throughout his young career.

Often likened to Giants stalwart Nick Haynes, Morrison is athletic with his 2km trial time at the AFL Draft Combine coming in at 6:33 - not bad for a player standing at 194cm and weighing in at 91kg.

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The 18-year-old is able to run off half-back or win one-on-ones, meaning he can play a number of roles if required by coach Beveridge.

Morrison may come a bit further down the order but with the Doggies having some late picks, it wouldn't be out of the question for them to make a play for him.

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