The Geelong Cats look to be one of the teams to beat in AFL season 2017 and have been installed at the odds of $11 with CrownBet to take out the premiership.
Here is our preview of the Cats’ chances this year.
2016 position: 3rd
2017 Difficulty Rating: 6/10
Off season movements:
ARRIVALS: Brandan Parfitt, Tom Stewart, Esava Ratugolea, Quinton Narkle, Timm House, Ryan Abbott, Zach Tuohy (Carlton), Aaron Black (North Melbourne)
DEPARTURES: Jimmy Bartel, Corey Enright, Zac Bates, Mitch Clark, Jock Cornell, Cameron Delaney, Josh Caddy (Richmond), Shane Kersten (Fremantle), Billie Smedts (Carlton), Nathan Vardy (West Coast)
Geelong tinkered with their list in the trade period, adding rebounding defender, Zach Tuohy, from Carlton, as well as out of favour Kangaroo, Aaron Black. They lost Josh Caddy to Richmond and plenty of experience with the retirements of the champion pair, Jimmy Bartel and Corey Enright.
The Cats have had plenty of time to stew on their poor showing on Preliminary Final night last year when the Sydney Swans blew them out of the water early on in the game before eventually winning by 46 points.
Geelong coach Brad Scott, will be looking for ways for his side to bridge the gap between their best and worst football, while improvement will need to come from the likes of Steven Motlop, Mitch Duncan and the developing, Nakia Cockatoo in order for the Cats to take the next step.
In 2017, they are rated a $2.10 chance with CrownBet of finishing inside the top four again this season, while they are at $1.43 of finishing inside the eight. Last year they finished the regular season in 2nd spot last year with a very healthy 22 wins, just percentage behind the minor premier, Sydney.
Geelong missed the finals in 2015 but with the signing of star midfielder, Patrick Dangerfield, at the end of that campaign, they were able to pick themselves up and scoot up the ladder in 2017.
The odds of Geelong missing out on the finals are $2.40 at CrownBet but with Dangerfield in the middle of the ground, we can look forward to another finals series that features the boys from Kardinia Park.
Dangerfield picked up a whopping 35 votes in last years medal, nine more than his nearest rival and has been installed as a $5 favourite to make it two in a row this year.
Geelong will need to negotiate a tricky draw that features eight six-day breaks, the most of any side in the competition, while they have just seven games at Simonds Stadium, down from eight last season.
Key betting odds
Premiership: $11 CrownBet
Top 4: $2.10 CrownBet
Top 8: $1.43 CrownBet
To Miss Top 8: $2.40 CrownBet
Brownlow: Patrick Dangerfield $5 bet365
Geelong will be thereabouts again in 2017 and are certainties of playing finals.