After six rounds, we’re starting to get a feel for which teams are starting to make their move, and which ones may struggle. AFLPlayers.com.au looks at at the players who played an underrated hand.
Western Bulldogs: Toby McLean
In what was a must-win game for the Dogs, Toby McLean ran all night to finish with a goal, 21 disposals at 80 per cent efficiency and six tackles to help the Bulldogs register their second win of the season by 21 points.
Sydney: Will Hayward
The Swans looked dead and buried at three quarter time, following a dominant third quarter that put the Cats up by 22 points. With the margin and the lack of personnel against them, it was a band of youngsters who helped to kick them back into it. Will Hayward was one of the younger brigade who took his chances late, kicking two of his three goals for the game in the last term, including the sealer.
Port Adelaide: Tom Jonas
Tom Jonas is enjoying a consistent start to 2018, and this was no different against the Kangaroos in Round 6. Jonas anchors the Power’s defence, and did his best to repel what has been a strong forward group from North Melbourne, finishing with 19 disposals and seven marks.
GWS Giants: Adam Tomlinson
If versatility is what you’re after then Adam Tomlinson is your man. One of the Giants’ running machines, Tomlinson, who had spent more time in defence throughout his career but can easily go galloping up the ground, collected 19 disposals at 89 per cent efficiency against the Lions in Round 6 to go with his five clearances and a goal.
Hawthorn: Harry Morrison
Alastair Clarkson and the Hawks must be delighted at how the 74th selection from the 2016 draft is progressing. In slippery conditions in Launceston on Saturday night, the 20-year-old gathered a career-high 25 disposals and kicked a big fourth-quarter goal.
Adelaide: Jordan Gallucci
Playing in just his third senior game, Jordan Gallucci showed some impressive signs on Saturday night. Following on from his important late goal against the Swans the week before, the 15th selection from 2016 draft enjoyed his most impactful game at AFL level, kicking two goals and collecting 21 possessions.
Melbourne: James Harmes
James Harmes has steadily moved up the ground and increased his workload, and that was evident against Essendon in a pivotal match between two teams previously struggling for form. The rugged 22-year-old finishing the game 23 disposals and nine tackles as the Dees claimed a 36-point victory.
Richmond: Jayden Short
He played a total of 32 games in 2016 and 2017 combined, and was one of the many unlucky Tigers to miss out on Grand Final day, but following post-season shoulder surgery, Jayden Short is grabbing his opportunity across half-back for Richmond. The fleet-footed 22-year-old kicked the first goal of the game, and finished with 20 disposals at 85 per cent efficiency.
West Coast: Dom Sheed
With the Eagles leading by seven points four minutes into the all-important last quarter of Derby 47, West Coast midfielder Dom Sheed stepped up. With the Dockers pressing, the 23-year-old received an Elliot Yeo handball close to the boundary on the wrong side for a left-footer but calmly slotted the goal to keep the pressure on the opposition. He also collected 23 disposals and six clearances as his importance to the Eagles’ side continues to grow.