Unique of the Week is back for 2015 as we pay closer attention to those players who have been flying under the radar. These players will offer a huge point of difference to your side, which can be vital for securing league wins and getting ahead of the pack. This week, Josh looks at Sydney midfielder/forward Tom Mitchell.
Name: Tom Mitchell
2014 Average: 83.8
Round 5 Score: 114
Bye Round: 12
Anyone who played SuperCoach in 2013 will remember the name of this future gun. As a midfielder, at a rookie price, Mitchell made his debut out of the substitutes vest, scoring 87, but what was even more impressive was that he went on to average 100 for the next two months. Since that debut season, Mitchell has been dominating at NEAFL level. Last year, Mitchell was unable to lock down a place in the Swans’ 22, playing just two games after Round 4, but here’s hoping it’s a different story this year.
At both AFL and NEAFL level, Mitchell has shown us he can produce very big SuperCoach scores. In the NEAFL, he averaged 134 SuperCoach points for the season, which included a 64 disposal, four goal game in May versus Eastlake which earned him 270 SuperCoach points. And even when he was recalled to the AFL side, Mitchell scored a modest 78 SuperCoach points in his first game against the Dogs in Round 22, and followed that up with a 29 disposal game against Richmond, and scored a casual 121 SuperCoach points.
This year, he has played just the one game, but 30 disposals (22 contested), and 114 SuperCoach points is just another reminder of his potential. At only $405,600, that is a huge bargain for a player of his calibre, and that could potentially be in the top six averaging forwards come seasons end.
As mentioned before, Mitchell has found it tough to break into the Swans’ AFL side, after he was dropped in Round 4, and even while dominating the NEAFL last year, was unable to break back into the side until just before the finals. Even then, he played only Rounds 22 and 23, but was dropped, despite having 29 disposals against the Tigers. With the Swans having so much depth, Mitchell is not a guaranteed starter, even with the ridiculous amount of disposals he racks up, and the SuperCoach scores he produces. There is even a slight chance he may be omitted this week.
There is still some small concerns over his ankle, which he seriously injured in the elimination final against Carlton in 2013. That was a constant issue for him last year, and he missed NEAFL games because of it. Given the nature of that injury, it could potentially flare up again.
Because he doesn’t go up in price this week, I would normally wait another week to get him. But, knowing he is playing Melbourne this week – who conceded 100 or more SuperCoach points to the best Fremantle midfielders last week (Fyfe, Barlow, Neale, Mundy) – means that getting him in this week could be a shrewd move. To get him or not to get him is an incredibly tough decision – the potential upside to getting him is huge, but knowing that he could be omitted will play on my mind throughout the season. For myself, it is a no at this stage, but that could and probably will change before lockout.
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