Just like the 2017 AFL Season itself, the race for this year’s Coleman Medal is as open as it has been in recent memory.
Current leader, Lance Franklin, is on track for 63 goals which would be the lowest winning tally since John Peck kicked 56 goals from 18 games in 1965. The coaches wishes for a more even spread of goal kickers means that there are more ‘live chances’ than ever to take home the award.
Here are the main chances as well as our recommendation from an AFL betting perspective.
L.Franklin (43 Goals):
Current leader of the bunched field. Franklin has been consistent without being spectacular this season. He’s only kicked two bags of 5 of more from his 15 games and once again his kicking for goal has been his Achilles heel with 41 behinds to his name thus far.
J.Cameron (41 Goals):
Started the season on fire with 13 goals in his first 3 games. Cameron has recently taken a backseat to his forward partner Jon Patton, with only 8 majors from his past 5 games including 4 against the lowly Lions. He seems to be playing further up the ground and allowing Lobb and Patton to play deep.
J.Daniher (41 Goals):
The young Essendon star is having somewhat of a breakout season. He seems to have overcome his goal kicking woes from earlier in the season and since his well-publicised 1.6 against Melbourne has kicked 28.10. Daniher has been ultra-consistent kicking 3 or more goals in 10 games so far. Given Essendon’s favourable draw to finish the season he must be considered.
E.Betts (39 Goals):
The ever dangerous Betts has slowed somewhat over the past 5 weeks with only 8 goals from his past 8 games. His form generally mirrors the teams success, averaging 1.75 goals a game in the Crows’ losses and 2.9 a game in their wins.
B.Brown (38 Goals):
The North spearhead is quietly putting together a great season in a team that is really struggling. Brown is one of the more accurate set shots in the league and is targeted regularly inside 50 by teammates. The only question is can they get it down to him enough?
R.Gray (38 Goals):
One of the most damaging small forwards in the game, Gray has transformed himself from goalkicking midfielder to a permanent stay at home forward. Within striking distance if others falter.
T.Walker (37 Goals):
Has had an up and down season at times but is still within 6 goals of Franklin. He tends to play a bit higher up the ground than most of the other contenders but showed good signs that his form is turning against the Dogs last week.
J.Riewoldt (36 Goals):
A former Coleman Medallist, Riewoldt ran into top form between round 4 and 7 where he kicked 18 goals including a season high 6 against the Dees. He hasn’t managed to kick more than 3 in his 9 games since and has been held to 2 goals over the past fortnight.
T.Hawkins (36 Goals):
The Big Cat broke a stretch of 6 goals in 5 weeks with 4 against the Lions on Saturday night. Dangerous on his day but not convinced he can bridge the gap to Franklin.
T.Lynch (35 Goals):
An interesting season from Lynch, he’s yet to kick a single goal in a match but has been held goalless four times. Has bounced back to form in the past two weeks with 8 goals.
J.Kennedy (34 Goals):
Was on track for his 3rd straight Coleman before injury derailed his season. Word out of the Eagles is that he is back this week for round 17. If that is the case he must be strongly considered. He kicked only 3 goals in the Eagles two bad losses at the ‘G but apart from that average close to 4 goals a game. If he does return this week and play out the season he is a legitimate threat and can be backed at a tasty price.
We have four betting recommendations on this market and will update on a weekly basis. We are going to risk Franklin and Cameron. Franklin is the likely winner but I think his reputation precedes his and could possibly back him at sub $3. Cameron’s recent form and slight role change is enough to put us off.
Instead we are going to back a couple of roughies in Brown and Walker and a bloke who is gunning for his 3rd straight Coleman in Kennedy. We are also going to have a ‘saver’ on Daniher who has the luxury of a cushy run home.
1 Unit J.Kennedy (WC) Coleman Medal at $15 Topsport
0.1 Units B.Brown (NM) Coleman Medal at $51 Ladbrokes
0.1 Units T.Walker (ADE) Coleman Medal at $51 Topbetta
0.35 Units J.Daniher (ESS) Coleman Medal at $4.75 Unibet