GWS will have the first ‘live pick’ in the 2021 AFL Draft and have stockpiled the points to match a bid on academy prospect Josh Fahey. Is there a trade package that will tempt the Giants out of the number two selection?
12 months on from list boss Jason McCartney’s trade to acquire Collingwood’s 2021 first-rounder, the Giants have once again set themselves up with a strong draft hand.
The Giants consistently bring great hands into the draft by trading for future selections, and at Pick 2 a dilemma between best available and list need will be one to watch.
2021 AFL Draft: GWS to gain another highly-touted NGA prospect
GWS will welcome Josh Fahey to the club for 2022, with the energetic half-back starring in the AFL Academy clash against Geelong VFL.
Fahey is from Canberra and hasn’t been able to play much football this season, but what we’ve seen has been brilliant with his penetrating kick and endurance being his standouts.
He projects to be bid on at some point in the second round, with the Giants having the points to match and still being able to select two first-round prospects beforehand.
As a northern academy, the Giants can match a bid wherever it comes for Fahey. The club also has access to Jack Driscoll, Sam Frost, Josh Green, Harry Grintell, Fraser Kelly, and Patrick Voss through their NGA.Embed from Getty Images
2021 AFL Draft: Should GWS trade or hold?
Finn Callaghan is the prospect clubs will be attempting to trade up for. The Sandringham Dragon had an outstanding year and offers elite ball use and a nice inside-outside midfield mix all at 191 centimetres after growing two centimetres in his draft year.
Callaghan looks the whole package as a midfielder, and his best comparison in the AFL is Giant Josh Kelly. They share a similarly potent left leg, offer brilliant evasive skills in traffic and are players that can hurt the opposition when they get forward of the stoppage.
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Gold Coast and Fremantle are two clubs interested in the Sandringham Dragon, but it would take a fantastic package on draft night to pry the selection away.
Even a package of the Dockers’ selections 6 and 8 for the Giants’ 2 and 13 wouldn’t be a good enough offer for McCartney to consider, while adding 19 into the equation pulls the deal out of Freo’s favour entirely.
All signs point towards the Giants holding onto Pick 2.
2021 AFL Draft: What does GWS need at the draft?
GWS current selections: 2, 13, 53, 54, 71, 89
A key forward should be priority number one for GWS, so expect Sam Darcy to be bid on. The Western Bulldogs will be matching this in a heartbeat, and from there the Giants have a decision to make.
The next best available player would be Nick Daicos. The Pies will match that bid as well, and it looks as if GWS may not end up bidding on the future Pie.
Key position talent is needed for the Giants who have lost the likes of Jeremy Cameron, Jonathon Patton and Jeremy Finlayson in the past 12 months. Add in the ageing Phil Davis in defence and retirement of Shane Mumford and it’s imperative that the Giants walk away from the draft with at least one key position player.
Mac Andrew is the best ruckman in the draft, and he doubles as a player that can perform all over the ground thanks to his incredible athleticism and ball skills. He’s come from the clouds to become a top-five prospect, and the Giants will heavily consider the 201-centimetre Stingray at their first selection.Embed from Getty Images
Joining Andrew as the next best key position player is lockdown defender Josh Gibcus, who has been brilliant for the GWV Rebels. His best AFL comparison is Jake Lever with his intercepting ability, contested marking traits and incredible vertical leap.
Andrew and Gibcus fit into the future plans of the Giants, but they aren’t the consensus best available in the open pool.
That mantle is held by Finn Callaghan, who projects to become a superstar midfielder and has all the modern day traits that clubs search far and wide for.Embed from Getty Images
If GWS commits to Callaghan at Pick 2 in the 2021 AFL Draft, his childhood best friend Blake Howes has emerged as a possible selection at Pick 13.
Howes is an ultra-athletic wingman that finished the season as well as anyone in the country. He boasts a speed-endurance mix and clean skills at 190 centimetres. If he was taken in the first round he would be one of the biggest risers in the draft, after starting slowly as a third tall forward with the Sandringham Dragons and not putting his best foot forward until the latter stages of the season when he moved up the ground.
Despite that connection between the two Dragons, it may not be the wisest decision. Jacob van Rooyen could present as the best available key position player at Pick 13 with the Claremont star finishing the WAFL Colts season kicking bags of five, four and three goals, and starring as a defender in the State Championships to show his swingman capabilities.
A haul of Finn Callaghan, Jacob van Rooyen, and Josh Fahey would cover the trifecta of best available, list need, and local talent for GWS at the 2021 AFL Draft.
The final position that needs attention on the Giants’ list is a small forward, with the club hanging onto Bobby Hill despite his trade request because of the lack of depth at the position.
Josh Rachele is the standout small forward in the draft and will be in contention at Pick 2, but the Giants are more likely to look at that position late in the draft or through the rookie draft.
Ronald Fejo Jnr was electric for the Allies in their State Championships match – the Northern Territorian mature-ager dazzled on a wing with evasive exploits and a deft touch with the football. He would be a brilliant option for the Giants if available in the rookie draft.Embed from Getty Images
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