There has long been debate about who is in the best position to judge the best players in the league.
The players vote for the MVP, umpires decide the Brownlow, and the media pick the rest.
The players have provided AFL.com.au with their list of the best players in the league and we’ve compared it with the 2014 Top 50 list written by renowned footy expert Mike Sheahan.
One thing that is immediately noticeable is the respect the champions of our game have amongst the players. While Mike has lent toward fresh faces, the players appear more likely to select experienced champions of the game who have runs on the board.
Where they differed
In the rucks, Mike Sheahan had Sandilands at 8, while the players selected the Fremantle giant at 46. They also opted for the West Coast duo of Cox and Naitanui who missed out on Mike’s line-up, electing Matthew Leuenberger ahead of the pair at 34.
In the midfield, the players have thrown their support behind experienced superstars in Jimmy Bartel, Leigh Montagna, Brent Harvey, Lenny Hayes, Chris Judd and Adam Goodes who were all overlooked by Mike. While at the other end of the age spectrum, one young gun, Collingwood’s Dayne Beams was selected at pick 48 by the players, Mike Sheahan had the Magpie at 16. Similarly, Sheahan listed Steven Motlop at number 25, while the players selected him at 44. Young Eagle Jack Darling just snuck into Mike’s 50 at 49, but didn’t feature in the players’ list.
Down back Mike’s opinion differed with Scott Thomson appearing at 24, while Darren Glass and Luke McPharlin didn’t get a look in.
Both the players and Mike selected Rioli, Sloane and Goddard around the tail end of the 50.
The list below provides a fascinating insight into how different groups view the game and raises the question, who is in the best position to judge the best players in the league?
Who do you think has got it right, and whose perspective do you value most? Leave your comments below and share who you would have chosen.