There were a number of dominant displays across round five of the AFL season, which has seen changes aplenty at the pointy end of The Sporting Landscape’s Player of the Season leaderboard.
Despite having not featured in the Player Rankings since round three, Taylor walker has held onto the top-spot but his lead is diminishing, with Max Gawn and Marcus Bontempelli jumping into the top-three as Dustin Martin makes way.
10. Luke Ryan (FRE)
The first of three Dockers to feature in this week’s Player Rankings after their narrow win over Adelaide. Ryan was superb in defence with 24 disposals at 83% efficiency, 12 intercept possessions, and three contested marks.
9. David Mundy (FRE)
Having been one of the quiet achievers of 2021, Mundy has finally found himself in the Player Rankings. The Dockers veteran played a vital role in their victory racking up 28 disposals at 86% efficiency, 13 contested possessions, 10 score involvements, six clearances, and a goal.
8. Andrew Brayshaw (FRE)
With Adam Cerra going down injured early, fellow young-gun Brayshaw stepped up superbly in his absence, finishing with a commanding stat-line of 33 disposals, 17 contested possessions, nine score involvements, seven clearances, and 515 metres gained.
7. Tom Stewart (GEEL)
The Cats backman looked the goods in their North Melbourne triumph, with 30 disposals at 87% efficiency, 14 intercept possessions, and 573 metres gained.
6. Lance Franklin (SYD)
The journey to 1000 goals is a wild rollercoaster. In just his third game since 2019 Buddy showed the AFL world what we’ve been missing with a five-goal haul, but now looks set to be stranded on 955 goals for the next month suffering bone bruising to the knee. Also picked up 14 disposals at 86% efficiency and five contested marks in the vintage display.
5. Oscar Allen (WCE)
The 22-year-old Eagles forward is shaping to be an exciting prospect. Allen seems to be getting better every week, his career-best bag of five goals against the Pies meaning he now has 14 goals in five games this season after kicking just 18 for all of 2020. Also recorded 13 disposals at 85% efficiency, nine score involvements, and four contested marks.
Teammate Jack Darling can count himself unlucky to miss out on this week’s Player Rankings having equaled Allen’s 5.1 as the key forward duo dismantled Collingwood.
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4. Marcus Bontempelli (WB)
A number of players from the Bulldogs ominous engine room threw themselves in contention for a spot on this week’s list, but only two got the nod. Bontempelli being the first with 33 disposals – although his 55% efficiency was lacking – 11 inside 50s, 10 contested possessions, nine score involvements, five clearances, three goals, and most impressively a whopping 798 metres gained.
3. Josh Dunkley (WB)
The second Dog to get the nod, Dunkley picked up 38 disposals – but like Bontempelli his 66% efficiency left more to be desired – 17 contested possessions, eight score involvements, seven clearances, and two goals. Missed out on second-place by the narrowest of margins.
2. Lachie Neale (BL)
Neale looks to be back to his Brownlow-winning best seemingly overcoming the back issue that’s hindered him all season. His welcome return to form included 38 disposals at 71% efficiency, 17 contested possessions, eight clearances, six score involvements, and two goals.
1. Max Gawn (MELB)
A dominant showing from the Dees skipper in their blow-out win over Hawthorn sees him shoot to second-place on the Player of the Season leaderboard. Sharing ruck duties with Luke Jackson he amassed 24 hit outs, 26 disposals, a mammoth 19 contested possessions and even more mammoth eight contested marks, as well as nine intercept possessions, seven score involvements, and five clearances. He was everywhere.
Player of the Season
An accumulative award based on each round’s Player Rankings, with players being awarded points correlating with their ranking. 10 points for 1st, 9 for 2nd, 8 for 3rd and so on.