According to Essendon legend Matthew Lloyd, there a four clubs that should look to change their captains and leadership groups ahead of 2021.
When speaking on AFL Trade Radio, Lloyd pointed out how Travis Boak revitalised his career after stepping down as captain in 2018, finding himself in the All-Australian team and second in the Brownlow count.
“You probably had concerns over where Travis Boak was at in his footy, I think Port Adelaide had concerns about where he was at, but he’s reinvented himself, it looks like his body shape has changed, he’s gotten back into being in the best three midfielders in the game,” Lloyd told AFL Trade Radio.
“At that time, he also gave up the captaincy and he could focus a lot more on himself and getting back to the best footballer he could be.”
“If I was these players, I would hand over the captaincy and get back to being the player I should be without the responsibility of being the captain of my club,” he said.
“If I was Dyson Heppell, I would look to hand over the captaincy and focus on getting his body right and putting all his energies into being a footballer and not meeting sponsors and coteries.
“The time has come for Jack Ziebell, he’s no Travis Boak, but Ziebell needs to hand over the captaincy and focus on being – I don’t know what he is at the moment – is he a midfielder, is he a forward?
“He’s sort of in no man’s land, he’s had a lot of injuries in that regard.
“There’s four that I’ve got that could maybe consider it.”
Kane Cornes agreed with captaincy changes at Essendon and St Kilda but was confused about who could step up at North Melbourne if Ziebell was to step down.
“There are some clubs that have an obvious succession plan,” he said.
“You look at Essendon and Zach Merrett – he could fill that role no worries. You look at Jack Steele, I think he’d do a great job at St Kilda, North Melbourne I don’t see an obvious one, that would be the hardpoint for them and the turmoil they’re in, is it Luke McDonald? I don’t know.”