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Jeppa’s Juniors – 2013 Ruckmen

With our rookie ruck stocks limited this season, it is time to take a good, hard look at the handful of options available.

  • Jeppa

Ruck rookies are always very important and this maybe more important than ever. I think you’d agree that there are no standout ruck rookies this year, so let me point you in the right direction. Here is my opinion on the best ruck rookie options for 2013…


grundyBrodie Grundy

Price: $107,200

Predicted Average: 70

Grundy is your typical modern day ruckman. He is extremely agile for a big man and his athleticism allows him to dominate at stoppages. Grundy gathers plenty of possessions around the ground and he’s more than capable of going forward and taking a contested grab. Many consider the top ruckman in last years draft as a steal at pick 18. He has a body ready for AFL and he will be given plenty of opportunities this year. Rumour on the street is that Grundy is out rucking Jolly at training! He will get games this year, that’s for sure, and I’d love to say lock him in as your 3rd Ruck but let’s see what he shows in the NAB cup before making any concrete decisions.


gorringeDaniel Gorringe

Price: $129,800

Predicted Average: 60

Who? Daniel Gorringe, you know, the number 10 pick in the 2010 draft. Remember now? Numerous leg and achilles injures have ruined Gorringe’s first two years in the AFL but he is now fit, firing and ready to go in 2013. With Tom Hickey departing in the offseason and Josh Fraser retiring, Gorringe comes up the pecking order at the Suns. He won’t be an amazing dreamteam scorer but he should get games and given the limited ruck choices available this year, he is an option.


majakdawMajak Daw

Price: $108,500

Predicted 2013 Average: 67

Everyone is waiting for this bloke to play a senior game of footy. Daw boasts a massive leap, is incredibly powerful, and very quick for a big bloke. Take a look at this goal he kicked in the VFL in 2011, Majak Daw VFL Goal of the Year 2011. His VFL form was pretty good in 2012 but I am not sure how he is going to fit into North Melbourne’s best 22. Will North play two ruckman?  Will they play Goldy and pinch-hit Petrie in the ruck? Or will they go with Currie? Truth is we just don’t know and we probably won’t know until Round 1. If Daw plays well in the Nab cup, I’d say he’d be given some opportunities in the season proper.


setantaSetanta O’hAilpin

Price: $157,700

Predicted Average: 69

The big Irishman is ahead of his rehab program and is looking to take part in full training very soon. With Folau out of the picture, O’hAilpin should get games (Source). His Ruc/Fwd eligibility makes him very appealing so if you can afford to spend the extra fifty odd thousand, I think it is worth getting O’hAilpin over Sam Rowe as your 4th ruck.


currieDaniel Currie

Price: $102,700

Predicted Average: 63

This mature age ruckman was picked up by North Melbourne to boost their ruck stocks after the departure of Hmac to Geelong. He spent five years at the Sydney Swans before being delisted at the end of 2011. In 2012, Currie had a dominant year at North Adelaide in the SANFL where he was named in the bests on 8 occasions. If not at North Melbourne, Currie would have found a home at another AFL club. He is very athletic and an exceptionally hard worker. After the disappointment of being cut from the Swans, I think Currie will take this second chance with both hands and do everything he can to make his mark at the Roos. Ultimately, the battle between Currie and Daw looms as an interesting one so watch this space!


Many coaches are considering Sam Rowe and Liam McBean as their cheap 4th Ruck because of their DPP eligibility. The strategy is recommended however, just be prepared that Rowe and McBean are unlikely to play any games this year. Rowe is probably third behind Casboult and Hampson as preferred full forward and he’ll need to find form in the VFL before he is considered for the big time. As for McBean, he is a very lightly framed kid who will be given time to develop like most young tall prospects. I expect 0 games from McBean this year.

It’s worth noting that Geelong’s Dawson Simpson, Melbourne’s Jack Fitzpatrick, Freo’s Jack Hannath and Richmond’s Tom Derickx are all back up options at their respective clubs and are unlikely to get games, so don’t pick them.

Look out for my post NAB Cup analysis on ruck rookies who looked good, rookies who struggled and those who snuck in under the radar!

Catch you on Monday evening for my take on the best rookie defenders.

Remember you can follow me @JeppaDT for all rookie relevant topics and more!

Defenders / Midfielders / Rucks / Forwards



  1. Joseph

    February 2, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Nice Jeppa, Currie/Daw combo for me atm but they are just making numbers until teams are announced.

  2. Joseph

    February 2, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Jeppa: You didn’t mention Witts, don’t you think he’ll get games?

    • GrandOldFlag

      February 2, 2013 at 7:53 pm

      I personally think Witts is ahead of Grundy, but NAB will tell for sure.

      Currie should be ahead of Daw and (despite injury setback) Gawn is ahead of Fitzpatrick when fit

    • Jeppa


      February 2, 2013 at 8:17 pm

      I’m of the opinion that Grundy is ahead of Witts at the moment. If Witts does well in the nab cup then ill give you my take on him in my post nab cup review.

      • Benatration

        February 2, 2013 at 9:41 pm

        hmmm. Grundy is injured (back) at the moment. Acording to the Collingwood BigFooty board he hasn’t done much proper training since getting back from Utah and apartently today Buckley said that he won’t do the NAB Cup and won’t look like getting some action until mid year.

        And Witts would easily be ahead of Grundy with all the extra development he has over his younger counterpart. Development is critically with young rucks, and Grundy has had virtually no time in the system, I mean he is a first year rookie.

        But nice write up. Hopefully a semi half decent rookie ruck will pop up and act as a handy backup :)

    • 3rdMonkey

      February 3, 2013 at 12:08 am

      Collingwood sees Witts as its next ruckman after Jolly. It sees Grundy as a forward first who can ruck a bit (as per Derek Hine on draft day) (i.e. its next Quentin Lynch). I don’t think they’re really after the same position this year so I don’t see it as accurate to say that one is ahead of the other.

      That being said, Witts will surely get some games this year, but possibly not many. Grundy is no rush being his first year so I doubt the Pies will be too stressed if he only manages to play VFL in 2013.

  3. tnargus

    February 2, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Great article, and well timed for me. Was looking into rook rucks today myself.

    How about that Majak goal!! What a jet!

  4. IamTheMessiaH

    February 2, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    Cox, L-Burger | Grundy, Daw for me, one question for other dters, is it worth it to start with cox? I could start a hmac and have the extra cash in my pocket for my first upgrade, IMO this year, the quicker you get that full prem team then you will fly up the ranks. Or maybe start with a Cox and a Grundy | Daw and Currie giving you 80k odd plus with not starting with Cox a extra 180k to pump back into other positions, thoughts?

  5. Aidan

    February 2, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Any DTer’s that are either Eagles or Dockers Fans???
    if interested join this league:
    Eagles V Dockers
    The code is 353077.
    Support your Team.

  6. Joke_R

    February 2, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    Great article Jeppa. Until this morning I had O’Hailpin Locked as R3 with Cox in the Fwds, in case Luenberger starts slow. I traded him for Rowe and used the extra money to go Murph > Cotchin. If Berger is named Round 1, which is looking increasingly likely, and with the new trade rules, do you think it will make a lot of difference going, say Grundy over Witts, because you can just sideways trade if a gun ruck gets injured. Given the amount of games, and amount of money made by the rookie rucks last year, (Giles excluded) are the ruck rookies a viable source of cash generation, or are all the big men in the league already established?

    • Jeppa


      February 2, 2013 at 8:55 pm

      You obviously Wana try get the rookies right the first time. You will use your sideways trades on premos and mid proceed before rookies unless a rookie is dominating. My current ruck bench is Grundy and setanta

  7. POK


    February 2, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    As a Pie and DT fanatic im a little worried about comments made over at big footy

    Apparently Grundy has a back/groin injury and he hasnt been doing much training.From the comments it says he won’t be playing NAB cup or early in the season.

    This was the first time I’d heard about this. Anyone heard about it?? Link at all??

    • Michael

      February 2, 2013 at 10:10 pm

      if that’s true Witts would surely be a no brainer pick…..

  8. Alex

    February 2, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    Great article !

    I got my league to be filled 946334

    Anyone can enter

  9. Fyfe4Lyfe

    February 3, 2013 at 1:32 am

    Going O’Hailpin-Gorringe bench – expensive but I’ve got $60K to spare AND they’re certain to get games, which is more than I can say for Daw, Currie. Witts and Grundy could get games but probably only 5 max each. Daw and Currie may not even play if Goldstein holds up, and maintains form (although he is inconsistent but you’d think he’d be somewhat entrenched in the Roos lineup with HMac gone). Currie will play a Jonathon Griffin-role IMHO as quality backup ruck.

    • Fyfe4Lyfe

      February 3, 2013 at 1:34 am

      Although Daw was upgraded to the senior list I might add. Maybe 3-5 games MAX. for each. Either way, no more than 10 in between them IMHO unless injuries strike North.

  10. ShaunWDT

    February 3, 2013 at 1:58 am

    Personally im of the belief that rookie rucks are irrelevant, with 44 trades you will just piss off an injured ruck!

    • Dream on!

      February 3, 2013 at 1:18 pm

      But you want rookie rucks playing to generate a bit of cash.

      • Fyfe4Lyfe

        February 3, 2013 at 9:11 pm

        +1, and even if you do have Cox DPP, your forwards will be weakened.

  11. Kirk Mackintosh

    February 3, 2013 at 10:46 am

    What about Ceglar?

    • FY77

      February 4, 2013 at 3:19 pm

      Ceglar is there..If you click on the 2011 goal of the year you’ll see him standing there like a poll when daw runs straight by him lmao

  12. Alex

    February 3, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    I am thinking a Premium, L-Burger, Rowe and Witts/Grundy
    Any suggestions who my premo should be

    I’m thinking maybe a Cox, Natanui or even a H-Mac

    Who do you guys think?

  13. Noodles71

    February 3, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    Setanta was never a big scorer when he was up and going….
    The big F Witts may be worth a look.
    The big L Burger a lock?
    Robbie Warnock is cheap….
    Kreuz to break loose?

    • Fyfe4Lyfe

      February 3, 2013 at 9:13 pm

      Setanta doesn’t need to me for me, is purely backup and 70ppg is MORE than enough.
      Witts is OK, but JS is a big problem with Jolly and Lynch rucking. Is purely there for future prospects and backup.
      Berger a lock no question.
      Warnock will average 75 tops IMO.
      Wouldn’t go anywhere near Carlton’s rucks, but Kreuzer can score well. Burnt me last year so never-again for me.

  14. Justin

    February 5, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Word is that Grundy has stress fractures in his back and won’t appear early in the year.

  15. brob

    March 6, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    majak daw is now my favourite player bloodylegend

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