Each year, the AFL Players' Association Board nominates a 40-man squad of players aged 22 or under that season, and fans vote for the final 22-man team.

With this year's official announcement coming after the season, here at Zero Hanger we couldn't wait that long, and have decided to select our own side, with a little twist of the rules.

To be eligible for our team, a player must have been 21 years of age at some stage during the 2017 season.

For example, Carlton superstar Patrick Cripps misses out by just five days, after turning 22 less than a week before the Blues' season opener against Richmond in March.

Also, this doesn't just take into consideration each player's 2017 campaign, but instead their entire career, meaning we've chosen to select the best of the best under 22.

In our edition, Essendon and Melbourne both lead the way with four players each in the side, with 11 teams represented in total.

Zero Hanger's 22 under 22

B: Kade Kolodjashnij (Gold Coast), Jake Lever (Adelaide), Ryan Burton (Hawthorn)

HB: Jayden Hunt (Melbourne), Harris Andrews (Brisbane), Callum Mills (Sydney)

C: Matt Crouch (Adelaide), Marcus Bontempelli (c) (Western Bulldogs), Christian Salem (Melbourne)

HF: Christian Petracca (Melbourne), Peter Wright (Gold Coast), Isaac Heeney (Sydney)

F: Charlie Curnow (Carlton), Eric Hipwood (Brisbane), Orazio Fantasia (Essendon)

Foll: Tom Boyd (Western Bulldogs), Zach Merrett (vc) (Essendon), Clayton Oliver (Melbourne)

Int: Darcy Parish (Essendon), Jordan De Goey (Collingwood), Sam Powell-Pepper (Port Adelaide), Andrew McGrath (Essendon)

Notable absentees: Connor Blakely (Fremantle), Darcy Moore (Collingwood), Alex Neal-Bullen (Melbourne), Caleb Marchbank (Carlton), Nakia Cockatoo (Geelong), Jayden Short (Richmond), Jacob Weitering (Carlton), Jack Steele (St Kilda), Jack Silvagni (Carlton), Ben Ainsworth (Gold Coast)