Which modern AFL superstars are most respected by their peers?
In the lead-up to Round 1, aflplayers.com.au (in conjunction with afl.com.au) will reveal the top 50 players in the game, as voted by the players.
One of the game’s biggest stars is the first key forward to crack the top 10 of this year’s Players’ Top 50.
Lance Franklin has been voted by his peers as the seventh best player in the competition, and only the eighth key forward to feature so far in the player voted tally.
The Swans superstar has been the best forward in the competition since his breakout year in 2007, becoming the 21st player to pass the 700-goal mark late last season.
Statistically, 2015 was not Franklin’s best season, burdened by lingering back injuries and missing the finals series due to a mental illness. The 29-year-old kicked 47 majors throughout his 17 matches – the first time since 2006 he has kicked fewer than 60 goals in a season.
He drops four spots from last year’s ranking but the players still consider him a formidable force capable of winning matches of his own boot.
Of his 221 AFL games, Franklin has gone goalless on only 18 occasions, with a bag of 13, three bags of nine and five bags of eight goals to his name over the course of his 11-year career.
Franklin is a best and fairest winner, dual premiership player, triple Coleman Medallist, five-time All-Australian and an eight-time club leading goalkicker.
He is the fourth Swan to feature in the Players’ Top 50 following Luke Parker (18), Dan Hannebery (14) and Josh Kennedy (13) in this year’s poll.