23/04/2024

Connor West in Eagles colours for the first time. Photo: West Coast Eagles Twitter

The AFL mid-season draft has concluded, and these are the best SuperCoach players taken for the second half of the season.

The AFL mid-season draft draft has concluded, and coaches around the country are wondering if any of these kids are viable SuperCoach options in the second half of the season.

The answer is yes. There are some absolute beauties coming out of this draft that are bound to help us navigate the second half of the season.

With prices considered, these are the 10 best SuperCoach options coming out of the AFL mid-season rookie draft in 2021.

READ: SuperCoach Trade Options: To trade or not in round 12?

1. Jai Newcombe (Hawthorn)

$102,400 MID

Newcombe offers the Hawks a midfielder who can get forward and hit the scoreboard, while still winning the ball at a great clip in the middle. He has exploded for Box Hill this year, averaging 23.2 touches per game, equating to 111 SuperCoach points per contest. He attacks the ball and the man fiercely, and doesn’t shirk a contest. But in a fashion similar to Touk Miller, he is able to get on the outside where he shows off impressive speed and an insatiable work rate.

With the Hawks needing to blood youth, expect Newcombe to get his opportunity this season. He may spend some time forward, but will be a great basement-priced option when he makes his debut.

2. Connor West (West Coast)

$102,400 MID

A bonafide WAFL stud with a mullet to contend with the best in the AFL, West offers immediate relief in the midfield for the Eagles. The West Perth star is averaging 27 disposals per game and laid 12 tackles in a game two weeks ago for the Demons. Adam Simpson has already talked him up as an inside-midfield option for the decimated Eagles.

With Tim Kelly joining Luke Shuey and Liam Duggan on the sidelines for the next month of footy, the window is wide open for West to play senior footy as early as round 14.

3. Jackson Callow (Hawthorn)

$102,400 FWD

The Hawks circled Callow in the pre-season and invited him down to train before ultimately taking Lachie Bramble with their supplementary period pick. He is a physically advanced just-turned 19-year-old who is likely to feature at some stage this year, because he is better than pretty much every key forward on Hawthorn’s list. Callow moved from Tasmania to the SANFL to press his claims for an AFL career, and led the league in contested marks. A teenager isn’t supposed to do that.

Callow could very well play in the next few weeks if he has a dominant game for Box Hill. Clarko may make him earn his spot and once again back in the unconvincing duo of Mitch Lewis and Tim O’Brien to kick a winning score alongside Jacob Koschitzke.

4. Matthew Parker (Richmond)

$141,000 FWD/MID

I expect Parker to score better than Callow if he gets his opportunity for the Tigers, but the slightly inflated price tag sees him fall a touch in the rankings. He had a 26 disposal, four goal game for South Fremantle against West Coast in the WAFL on the weekend which was incredible to watch. At his best, Parker is a dynamic medium forward who can fly with the best of the them and convert his opportunities. At his worst, Parker will touch the ball three times in a game and hardly be sighted.

Expect the Tigers to get the best out of him as they did with Marlion Pickett in 2019.

5. Ash Johnson (Collingwood)

$102,400 FWD

Johnson instantly became one of the most exciting players on an AFL list when he was selected by the Pies with pick three. The high-flying forward has spent the latest chapter of his football life at Sturt in the SANFL, where he averaged 2.2 goals per game for a side that is struggling to get wins on the board.

Johnson offers something the Pies forward-line has desperately lacked; he creates something out of nothing and kicks straight. Expect him to play in the next few weeks.

6. Kye Declase (Melbourne)

$102,400 DEF/MID

I’m quietly confident Declase finds his way into the Demons lineup come the end of the season, but it remains to be seen if he can do so in time to be SuperCoach relevant. The swingman has lit the VFL up this season in a huge effort after being overlooked in the SSP pick. Playing on the wing and forward mostly for Werribee, Declase has averaged 22.2 disposals and kicked six goals in his five matches.

If Simon Goodwin gives him his opportunity, expect it to come as a third tall in defence in place of Harrison Petty. There is a competition to be had for that spot, and I’ll back Declase in to win it.

7. Patrick Parnell (Adelaide)

$102,400 DEF

Patrick Parnell may be the best SuperCoach prospect coming out of this draft class. It just might not come this year. The Murray Bushranger has been awesome off the half-back line in 2021, showcasing his elite agility with ball in hand to evade tacklers. When he uses it, he hits targets, and has drawn comparisons to Caleb Daniel due to his height (178cm). His best came two weeks ago with 30 touches and a goal.

He’s averaging an insane 141 point in the NAB League, and may well jump ahead of Will Hamill and Andrew McPherson in the pecking order if he can perform at SANFL level.

8. Charlie Ham (North Melbourne)

$102,400 DEF

Ham has really settled in at the Geelong Falcons in his over-age year, becoming a premier running defender in the NAB League. His brother, Brayden, is at the Dons, and the Shinboner will similarly need to add some weight to his frame.

However, with North’s current injury list, he does add something that they could use. He won’t score too well for the Roos, but he could play games sooner than most expect.

9. James Peatling (GWS)

$102,400 DEF/MID

Peatling goes to GWS from their academy and could add to the exciting mix of rebounding defenders they have in Lachie Ash and Isaac Cumming. He is a hard-working player who has played up forward and behind the ball before, but has settled at VFL-level as a forward/midfielder, averaging 22.4 disposals per contest.

He most-likely finds his way into the side off the back of his forward pressure, but he figures to develop into a small defender with good dash off the half-back line.

10. Jordan Boyd (Carlton)

$102,400 DEF

Carlton could have found their shutdown defender of the future with Boyd. He is an ultra-competitive smaller type out of Footscray who uses the ball well when he gets it. Boyd has averaged 18.4 touches in the VFL in 2021.

Carlton may continue to trial the likes of Lachie Plowman and Luke Parks in the role of a shutdown defender, but signs point towards Boyd being able to contribute early in his career with the Blues.

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