Trending topics

Select your station

We'll remember your choice for next time

“Make or break”: Why some recruiters would be nervous over 2020 draft class


Dwayne Russell believes there will be a few nervous recruiters across the league as the 2020 draft class goes under the microscope.

Declaring the upcoming season ‘moving year’ for all the players taken in the 2020 draft, Russell believes three years is appropriate time to begin to judge a draftee.

“We talk about how one draft can change the fortunes of a club for better or for worse. There are some AFL recruiters a little nervous, I would say, about the 2020 draft, players they did and didn’t take because this is moving year for the 2020 crop,” he told SEN Afternoons.

“When you have a look at the 2020 list you’ll see why Essendon is in the position it’s in now, Adelaide is in the position it’s in now, Geelong, North Melbourne and Sydney likewise.

“We’re about to find out about the 2020 draft crop… when you think of some of the names, it’s make or break for them.”

2020 National Draft Top 10 picks

  1. Jamarra Ugle-Hagan (Western Bulldogs)
  2. Riley Thilthorpe (Adelaide)
  3. Will Phillips (North Melbourne)
  4. Logan McDonald (Sydney)
  5. Braeden Campbell (Sydney)
  6. Denver Grainger-Barras (Hawthorn)
  7. Elijah Hollands (Gold Coast)
  8. Nik Cox (Essendon)
  9. Archie Perkins (Essendon)
  10. Zach Reid (Essendon)

Russell gave his thoughts on multiple clubs whose 2020 draftees have stood out – both for the right and wrong reasons.

AFLTipping24 728x90

AFL-Record-Banner-2024 728x90px


Pick 2 – Riley Thilthorpe
Pick 11 – Luke Pedlar
Pick 25 – Brayden Cook
Pick 28 – Sam Berry
Pick 38 – James Rowe (delisted)

“What kind of year is Riley Thilthorpe going to have this year? If he has a big year this year, Adelaide is a huge chance of playing finals,” Russell said.

“Adelaide in 2020 took Riley Thilthorpe at pick two and Luke Pedlar at pick 11. They both look like they’re going to be good players.”


Pick 4 – Logan McDonald
Pick 5 – Braeden Campbell
Pick 32 – Errol Gulden

“Sydney is in a position where they can win a flag right now because they’ve been clever enough through their academy obviously and picking out Logan McDonald to be able to regenerate.

“Sydney in 2020 took Logan McDonald, Braeden Campbell and Errol Gulden. They’re primed to go, Sydney, because they got it right in 2020 and maybe with assistance of their next generation academy, but Gulden was pick 32 in that draft and he looks like he could be the best of the crop.”


Pick 8 – Nik Cox
Pick 9 – Archie Perkins
Pick 10 – Zach Reid
Pick 39 – Josh Eyre (delisted)
Pick 53 – Cody Brand (delisted)

“Is Essendon going to fire this year or not?

“They took Nik Cox at eight, Archie Perkins at nine and Zach Reid at 10. This is their year to rise off the back of having picks eight, nine and ten.

“Essendon fans are getting impatient. This is the year.


Pick 12 – Tanner Bruhn (to GWS)
Pick 17 – Oliver Henry (to Collingwood)
Pick 20 – Max Holmes
Pick 33 – Shannon Neale
Pick 47 – Nick Stevens (delisted)

“There’s a threat that Geelong are going to jump above Essendon because out of 2020, the Cats have got a solid crop.

“Max Holmes can play, Tanner Bruhn can play, they got him home from the Giants. They got Ollie Henry home to Geelong from Collingwood and Shannon Neale looks like he’s going to be okay by the way he played last week.”

More in AFL