Collingwood take a punt on Jordan from the rough

Every football club needs to fit a rough list profile. Enough tall forwards, rebounding defenders, inside mids, and the rest, in order to operate, both on a best 22 basis and having squad depth. Jordan Roughead’s acquisition by Collingwood represents the Pies moving to address one of their glaring list holes – a lack of ruck depth.

Roughead hasn’t regularly played at the Dogs since 2016, playing 13 and 12 games in the last two year. He’s not a great tap ruckman, but provides some value around the ground. His spot at the Dogs has likely been replaced by some combination of English, Boyd and Trengove (including occasionally all three of them?). Presumably the Dogs didn’t want to pay a fourth ruckman to sit in the VFL.

The Pies, however, only really have one listed senior ruckman, the All Australian Brodie Grundy.

Injuries happen, and if Brodie Grundy goes down (like Gawn did in 2017), their back up options were to either pull Cox from their forward line and go super duper small in attack, gamble on a rookie lister like Max Lynch, or try to roll someone like Moore or Mihocek through the ruck as a dummy. None are great options. Roughead at least has some history as an AFL-ish level ruck, and won’t disrupt their structure too much if called upon.

If all things go well, Grundy will stay healthy and Roughead’s predicted 20.8 PAVs will be a massive overestimation. The Magpies have essentially paid pick 75 for an insurance plan. If he plays, something probably has gone wrong for Collingwood.

Verdict: Fair trade.

Note: This post is part of a series of posts using a valuation method called Player Approximate Value (PAV) to evaluate trades for fairness and balance. Elsewhere, you can read much more about the method and theory behind PAV and also about PAPLEY, the projection method used to derive expected future PAVs. This method expresses both picks and players in terms of expected future value allowing them to be compared on this common basis.

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