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  • Liam Kermode

GameDay Squad Aussie Rules 2024 - Midfielder Tiers!

It's that exciting time of the year again when we delve into the realm of fantasy footy! Let's kick off this series with everyone's favourite positional group: the midfielders! We'll take a deep dive into the hard hitters from 2023, identify potential breakout candidates, and assess the older players who might be showing signs of slowing down. Get ready as we break down the midfield position into tiers for the upcoming 2024 Aussie Rules season!

fantasy football tiers

Tier 1

Tom Green Errol Gulden Sam Walsh Marcus Bontempelli Jordan Dawson

In our premier tier, we're spotlighting players with immense potential, poised to soar to 135+ GDS fantasy points in the upcoming 2024 season. Just as Marcus Bontempelli and Errol Gulden showcased their prowess last year, I anticipate them to maintain their stellar performance. However, let's delve into how the rest of the top-tier midfielders measure up.

These are the cream of the crop, the indispensable assets you'll want on your roster from day one. Leading the pack for me is Tom Green, whose breakout 2023 season saw him averaging an impressive 126 GDS fantasy points. As we head into the new season, Green emerges as a prime candidate for the top midfield spot. At 23 years old, he's fit, healthy and showing no signs of slowing down. His pivotal role in the Greater Western Sydney Giants midfield solidifies his status as a reliable choice.

On the radar as a potential game-changer is Sam Walsh, despite his slightly lower average of 114 GDS fantasy points in 2023. Despite setbacks from injury early last year, including preseason back surgery, Walsh is poised for a resurgence. It's highly unlikely that Voss will slot Walsh up on the half-forward flank this season after his dominant performances in the 2023 finals series. With the potential to rival the likes of Green, Gulden, Bontempelli, and Dawson for the top spot, Walsh is a compelling prospect. Recall his impressive 2021 form, where he clinched fourth place in the Brownlow Medal tally, and it's evident why he's a must-have for the 2024 season in GameDay Squad Fantasy Aussie Rules.

These top-tier players boast not only reliability but also a proven track record and clear potential for continued success.

Tier 2

Andrew Brayshaw

Zak Butters

Caleb Serong

Zach Merrett

Connor Rozee Rory Laird

Some colossal names grace the tier 2 list, and honestly, one could argue that any of them could easily slot into the tier 1 category! Among them are Fremantle teammates Andrew Brayshaw and Caleb Serong, along with Port Adelaide's Connor Rozee and Zak Butters. In hindsight, this might be why I placed them in tier 2 instead of tier 1. All four players are still remarkably young, and I believe we haven't witnessed the full extent of their potential yet. It wouldn't surprise me if any of them break into the top tier.

At the moment, Zak Butters is the player who particularly piques my interest. Although he has faced some injury setbacks in the past, we saw his devastating impact on fantasy football in 2023 when he finally enjoyed a consistent run of games. With an average of 118 GDS fantasy points last year, I envision Butters pushing his average into the high 120s, bringing him to the cusp of tier 1 status. While I anticipate Rozee to also improve as a fantasy prospect, I just think that Butters possesses a higher scoring ceiling. I'm super keen to see what he'll produce in the 2024 season!

It's intriguing to reflect on the fact that this time last year, Rory Laird was widely regarded as the consensus #1 ranked midfielder! Despite starting a bit slow and facing stiff competition from Marcus Bontempelli and Clayton Oliver which cause Adelaide's bull midfielder to lose some of his shine, Laird still averaged 125 GDS fantasy points per game and ranked 7th overall among midfielders! In the upcoming 2024 season, Laird and Jordan Dawson will enter their second season together as a rover and ruck rover duo. With some natural improvements across the field for the Adelaide Crows, I envision Laird becoming an absolute must-start week in and week out once again! Tier 3 Christian Petracca Tim Taranto Luke Davies-Uniacke Noah Anderson Josh Dunkley Darcy Parish

Once again, a plethora of renowned names brimming with talent and the potential to ascend to tier 1 or 2 in 2024! This distinguished group boasts stalwarts who have consistently lit up fantasy radars season after season, such as Christian Petracca, Tim Taranto, Josh Dunkley, and Darcy Parish, alongside emerging stars who showcased their mettle in 2023, earning the right to be mentioned in the same breath as the league's elite. Every fibre of my being wanted to place Noah Anderson in tier 2. My admiration for Noah as a footballer and a fantasy prospect is unwavering. However, a shadow of apprehension has just left some question circling in my mind, embodied by Dimma! Gold Coast's acquisition of coach Damien Hardwick from the Richmond Tigers could be the catalyst the Suns desperately need for success. Historically, though, the success accompanying Damien Hardwick has never really translated fantasy returns for his midfielders. Look back at the likes of Trent Cotchin and Dion Prestia, esteemed inside midfielders who, while consistently solid fantasy assets, never quite cemented themselves as weekly must-starts. Noah Anderson, with his tier 3 designation, possesses the talent to break this pattern, but at the end of the day, it will be talent vs Dimma once again from a fantasy perspective.

Josh Dunkley is currently under-appreciated! Entering his sophomore year at the Brisbane Lions and fresh off a 2023 campaign where he boasted a 116-point average in GDS fantasy as a forward, one might assume that his debut season at the GABBA left something to be desired for GameDay Squad coaches. Granted, a positional switch is rarely ideal, but let's not overlook Josh Dunkley's pedigree! He boasts four seasons with a GDS average in triple digits. Even in a perceived "off" year, he ranked among the top 30 fantasy players league-wide, tallying over 100 GDS fantasy points on 14 occasions in 2023 alone. He remains a bona fide star, and a player I wouldn't dare commence the 2024 season without!

Tier 4

Clayton Oliver

Chad Warner

Adam Cerra Stephen Coniglio

Adam Treloar Brad Crouch

Tim Kelly Jack Steele Lachie Neale Touk Miller

Sam Docherty

Matt Crouch

Tier 4 boasts the largest contingent of players within a single tier, and rightfully so! Among them are individuals who were once hailed as tier 1 players, while others have yet to fully realise their potential, and a few may simply be entering the twilight of their elite playing days. What unites these players is the presence of... question marks. Each one possesses the capacity to emerge as a top-10 midfielder in 2024; however, as we stand in the preseason, the uncertainty surrounding this group is just the slightest bit concerning.

The name that clearly stands out like a sore thumb here is Clayton Oliver. Oliver has consistently shone as a fantasy football gem season after season in recent years. Even last year, he boasted a GDS average of 134 fantasy points per game, placing him 2nd among midfielders. However, the issue lies in Oliver's limited appearances on the field, having played only 13 games last season. While injury reasons were cited, murmurs about training ethic and strained relationships with the Demons' front-office staff began to surface. Even in the 2024 pre-season, no body is really sure of Oliver's status within the team. There's every chance Oliver starts game 1 and scores 170 odd GDS fantasy points and all is well, he's an instant Tier 1 starter. But as of right now, there are just too many unknowns.

Tier 5

Tom Liberatore

Jack Viney

Josh Kelly Will Day

Matt Rowell

Jai Newcombe

Tom Mitchell

Luke Parker

Hugh McCluggage

Callum Mills

James Rowbottom

Josh Daicos

Tier 5 where we find the best of the rest! I genuinely believe come selection time for your GameDay Squad that these guys will be in the conversation at some point in time. Particularly the likes of Tom Liberatore, Will Day, Hugh McCluggage and Callum Mills. Keep these players-of-difference waiting in the wings and deploy them as you see fit thorughout the season!



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