MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 15: Charlie Curnow of the Blues celebrates kicking a goal during the round 13 AFL match between the Carlton Blues and the Western Bulldogs at Marvel Stadium on June 15, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Kicking off our 'steal one player' series is Richmond for 2023, who worked through a quiet draft period after moving on their top picks to secure significantly boost their midfield.

The additions of Tim Taranto and Jacon Hopper from the Giants saw the Tigers identify and address a void in their list, but their revamped midfield ensemble, which is sure to see more minutes from Shai Bolton and Dustin Martin in 2023, isn't the only areq Damien Hardwick would've hoped to have added to this off-season.

Putting salary claps and list sizes aside, who would Richmond pinch in an ideal world where recruitment is met with little hesitation?

Here we assess the Tigers' list needs, name four players that could aid their squad and the one player who would top their list in this exercise.

List Needs

Despite returning to the top eight in 2022, Richmond's weaknesses were still on show across the course of this year's campaign, which ended in an early finals exit.

While they were able to address a number of vacant roles in their midfield with the acquisitions of Taranto and Hopper, there are several areas across Damien Hardwick's squad that the Tigers will highlight in their plans for the future.

Perhaps the area of paramount importance is their key forward depths, with triple premiership spearhead Jack Riewoldt likely entering his final season in the AFL next year.

Tom Lynch has taken on the leading role in attack, but another full-time forward to partner the ex-Suns skipper is certainly required.

Outside and more versatile midfield options may also be of interest to Richmond, with their wing duo of Marlion Pickett and Kamdyn McIntosh also needing to have successors in the coming years.

A player who can slot onto a wing, across either flank and even run through the middle to help rotate the engine room would be a welcome addition at Punt Road.

The Tigers' tall defensive group has taken a number of shapes since the start of their premiership run in 2017, with champion backman Alex Rance prematurely departing in 2019, while Robbie Tarrant joined the club from North Melbourne ahead of the 2022 season.

Top 10 pick Josh Gibcus also landed at Richmond in the 2021 off-season, but another youthful key defender might be a target for the Tigers to scout, with Tarrant, Dylan Grimes and Nathan Broad all in their 30s next year.

Another area for adjustment in Richmond's spine is their ruck options, with leading pair Toby Nankervis and Ivan Soldo perhaps needing heavier competition to hold the top spot.

While Nankervis should remain their No.1 tall in the middle, a player to aid his workload and rotate either forward or back would work wonders for the Tigers.

Taking all this in mind, we name four players that the Tigers might consider stealing and a verdict for their thinking...


1. Charlie Curnow

When searching through the leading key forward options in the AFL it's hard to overlook the reigning Coleman Medal winner.

While Cats superstar Jeremy Cameron would be an enticing option for the Tigers, Curnow's extra four years of youth has him ahead of the premiership forward.

Much like his stellar partnership with Harry McKay with the Blues, Curnow and Tigers tall Tom Lynch would give opposition defenders a headache through all four quarters of a match.

The balance both Curnow and Lynch would offer Damien Hardwick's side would surely have the Tigers back toward the top of the league as they feed off the club's new-look group of star midfielders.

The duo combined for 124 goals (Curnow 64, Lynch 60) in the home and away season to place first and second in the Coleman Medal standing.