Former North Melbourne great Wayne Carey has revealed his predictions for the 2019 season on Channel Seven.
Carey is tipping Richmond, Melbourne, West Coast and Adelaide to make the top four, while backing the Tigers to win their second premiership in three years.
He likes Melbourne young gun Clayton Oliver for the Brownlow Medal over the likes of Dusty Martin, Patrick Dangerfield and Nat Fyfe.
Oliver averaged 29.4 disposals, 6.6 tackles and 6.6 clearances last season but only polled 13 Brownlow votes to finish third at the Demons behind Angus Brayshaw (21 votes) and Max Gawn (20 votes).
Carey believes it will be a tough year down at Moorabbin, labelling St Kilda the team that will disappoint and Alan Richardson as the coach most under the pump.
The Saints finished 16th last season with just four wins and things already look murky for them before the season has even started.
Key defender Jake Carlisle is facing potential season-ending back surgery, boom recruit Dan Hannebery is uncertain for round one with a hamstring issue and gun midfielder Jack Steven has taken leave from the club as he deals with a mental health issue.
Finally, Carey thinks his old team, the Kangaroos, will be the biggest surprise package of the 2019 season.
After beefing up their midfield in the off-season with new recruits Jared Polec, Dom Tyson and Aaron Hall, North will look to build off their 12-win campaign that saw them finish ninth.
Carey’s 2019 season predictions
Premiers – Richmond
Brownlow – Clayton Oliver (Melbourne)
Coach under pressure – Alan Richardson (St Kilda)
Team that will disappoint – St Kilda
Team that will surprise – North Melbourne