AFL Round 17 stocks up, stocks down: Return on investment for high-paid ruck

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In Round 17 we saw a star ruckman earn his pay and a forgotten Saint continue an unbelievable resurgence, but Richmond's finals stocks are at five-year lows... Here's whose stocks are up and whose are down.

Our footy experts cast their eye over the week's action to find out whose stocks are up -- whether it's a coaching masterstroke or a player having a blinder -- and whose are down. Every club features, so jump ahead to your team below (desktop only).

Crows | Lions | Blues | Magpies | Bombers | Dockers | Cats | Suns | Giants | Hawks | Demons | Roos | Power | Tigers | Saints | Swans | Eagles | Bulldogs

Adelaide

Stocks up: In an otherwise dismal night for the Crows, fair props to hard-nut Harry Schoenberg who was given the task of nullifying prolific Bomber Darcy Parish in a tag. He did it well - restricting awards-magnet Parish to just 19 touches, which is his lowest tally in 15 weeks.

Stocks down: What a doleful outing that was; utterly dreadful. Lowest score in their history? The Adelaide Crows need to take a long hard look at themselves.

Brisbane

Stocks up: He's been missed at times this season, but Lachie Neale is a blue chip workhorse who just continues to deliver for the Lions, even in defeat. Another 31 disposals and nine clearances from the Brownlow medallist. Top class.

Stocks down: You really have to wonder what some Lions were doing on Saturday night. There were seven Brisbane players who finished the game with eight or fewer disposals and had virtually no impact on the game. Perhaps Rhys Mathieson really is the Lions' barometer. He was horrible after coming on early as the sub and his side followed suit.

Carlton

Stocks up: Not for the first, second or third time this year we're buying stock in Blues young gun Sam Walsh. The 2018 No. 1 pick was electric against the Cats, picking up 36 disposals and kicking two brilliant goals. Looking like a lock for the All-Australian team.

Stocks down: We're not sure what the Blues see in Lachie Plowman. He's regularly beaten in defence and turns the ball over far too often. Oh, and while we're on the subject of underperforming Carlton players, how about Jack Martin, Lachie Fogarty and Will Setterfield?

Collingwood

Stocks up: In a blistering final quarter, it was Brodie Grundy (along with Taylor Adams, who we spoke about last week) who proved to be the difference in the Pies' come-from-behind win. In the last term alone, he had eight disposals (four contested), three marks (one contested) and kicked a decisive goal from the square.

Stocks down: Collingwood's watchability under Robert Harvey isn't great. Save for a wonderful last term -- which should have been sealed by the Tigers, who have their own issues right now -- the Magpies look lethargic and lack creativity for long stretches at a time.

Essendon

Stocks up: The crafty Archie Perkins has put his hand up to be the Bombers' third Rising Star nomination this season after notching three goals (3.3) and 18 disposals against the Crows. Displaying all the dangerous traits that made him highly touted in 2020 during the blistering win, we have no doubt Perkins will be a star for the Bombers.

Stocks down: Ben Rutten is lucky he has an abundance of young key talls developing, because while Cale Hooker has been serviceable for many years, he's simply not the answer in the front half. Booted 1.3 from 11 touches (45 percent efficiency) after failing to hit the scoreboard and amassing a lowly five touches in Round 16. Has to do more if the Bombers really want to be pushing for -- and playing -- finals.

Fremantle

Stocks up: We didn't think David Mundy's stocks could actually get any higher, but here we are ... 30 possessions, six clearances and two goals was a performance we have come to expect from the veteran this season. There were many other standout efforts from the Dockers. Nat Fyfe's 31 touches, Andrew Brayshaw's 32, Rory Lobb's four goals and Sean Darcy's 25 disposals and 27 hit outs were all important in a win that saw them leapfrog their old foe West Coast.

Stocks down: We want to be seeing a little more from Liam Henry, who is now 14 games into his career. He collected nine disposals against the Hawks - bang on his season average. We can sense a breakout game coming, but it's taking its time...

Geelong

Stocks up: A former Blue himself, Zach Tuohy again showed why he is one of the most reliable kicks for goal in the league. Along with 24 touches, Tuohy kicked two goals straight while others (mostly from his former team) were missing all around him. He has a cool head, a beautiful kick and has been a wonderful servant for the Cats.

Stocks down: With Jacob Weitering on Tom Hawkins and no Liam Jones in the Blues side, Cats big man Esava Ratugolea had a chance to really stake his claim for a regular place in his side's best 22. But aside from an early goal, Ratugolea was disappointing, consistently dropping marks and looking out of his depth. He finished the game with just seven touches.

Gold Coast

Stocks up: Star midfielder Touk Miller might find himself joining Chris Grant and Corey McKernan in a small but unwanted group of those who are ineligible to win the Brownlow despite polling the most votes. He's been a star for the Suns, and was best on ground again on Sunday against the Giants, racking up 35 touches and two goals. He has to be an All-Australian certainty.

Stocks down: Heading to Ballarat, where the weather is often unkind, means it's always smart to pack a few long sleeve guernseys - just in case. Apparently the Suns' property steward, or the coaches (or someone!) forgot that the blue clash strip does not actually have a long sleeve version! Oops!

GWS

Stocks up: In his 100th game, Jacob Hopper nearly dragged his side over the line on his own. He amassed 41 disposals, 12 clearances and a staggering 940 metres gained. He was throwing himself into contests and running himself ragged - he deserved better!

Stocks down: Too often, this side can play world-beating football one week, but look second-rate the next - which means their mediocrity isn't a talent issue. The coaching staff needs to work out what motivates this group, because whatever they're trying now isn't working, at least, it isn't working consistently.

Hawthorn

Stocks up: We hope you listened last week and bought stocks in Lachie Bramble. He might just be a player to get excited about for Hawks fans. In just his fourth game, he amassed 27 disposals at 85 percent efficiency, took six marks and had six intercept possessions. Impressive stuff.

Stocks down: It was a real shame to see Changkuoth Jiath limp off the ground against the Dockers with a susepcted PCL injury, one which will likely end his season. Jiath has been a shining light for Alastair Clarkson's side in 2021, seemingly getting better and better with each outing.

Melbourne

Stocks up: What a turnaround season 2021 has been for Tom McDonald! And who would have thought he would be the main beneficiary of the Dees recalling Ben Brown? McDonald, who spearheaded his side's return to the winners' list, looked ominous from the outset on Thursday night and the Power had no answers for his 19 touches, eight marks, 10 score involvements and three goals.

Stocks down: He was serviceable-ish, but Ben Brown really has lost his way, despite a slightly higher role up the ground. Perhaps now we know why he has been a regular in the reserves...

North Melbourne

Stocks up: So many Roos can hold their heads high, but If you haven't got stocks in Jaidyn Stephenson, what are you doing!? It was a phenomenal performance in the wet from the 22-year-old who racked up a career-high 38 disposals and kicked a crucial last quarter goal to help stun the Eagles at a hostile Optus Stadium.

Stocks down: The experienced Shaun Atley has the ability to play as a lock down defender, sure, but for a player with his apparent pace, he needs to offer a more run-and-gun style before David Noble elects to blood youth ahead of the 230-gamer who only managed 12 disposals and didn't lay a tackle.

Port Adelaide

Stocks up: Putting his hand up to be one of the league's most improved players this season, Karl Amon was again one of Port's best. He finished with 28 touches, 831 metres gained and a goal is an outstanding effort in a losing team.

Stocks down: Young gun Connor Rozee continues to have an up-and-down 2021. One goal from six disposals and 93 percent game time is worrying for a third-year player with his talent.

Richmond

Stocks up: Death, taxes, and Dylan Grimes stepping up for the Tigers. One of a few who can hold their head up high, Grimes (and, for the most part, Ryan Garthwaite) did their all to keep Collingwood's forwards at bay. Note to the rest of the side - they can't do it all!

Stocks down: Are Richmond's finals stocks at a five-year low? Given what Richmond served up in the final quarter of their clash with Collingwood, they might not even play in September. The Tigers were -56 disposals in the last quarter? Not good enough in ANY team. A number of players might find themselves in the VFL next week, Jason Castagna and Mabior Chol especially.

St Kilda

Stocks up: Six weeks ago, Luke Dunstan's career was at a crossroads. He had played just two games in two years and looked as if he was on the way out of the AFL system. But what an incredible turnaround it's been. Since Round 11 he's played in four Saints wins and been in the best handful of players each time. Dunstan was brilliant again on Saturday night with another 29 touches, six clearances and seven inside 50s against the Lions.

Stocks down: Even in St Kilda's wins Dan Butler was relatively anonymous. As Dunstan has risen, Butler's value has gone in the other direction. His poor form continued in Round 17 with no goals from his seven kicks. Maybe he needs a spell in the twos...

Sydney

Stocks up: Come on down, Jordan Dawson. With one of the best looking left boots in the game, Dawson kicked three first quarter goals to help the Swans get a crucial and gutsy road win over the Bulldogs. Add in the fact he racked up 26 disposals and had 511 metres gained, it was a three-vote effort from the 24-year-old.

Stocks down: It was an 'almost' day for Sam Wicks, who had just six touches (two turnovers) and kicked two behinds in the Swans' win.

West Coast

Stocks up: Gun midfielder Tim Kelly might just be returning to form after returning from injury a few weeks ago. His form has been under the microscope, but 25 touches, five clearances, six tackles and a brilliant -- albeit fortuitous -- goal to extend his side's lead in the final stanza was a solid outing on a tough night.

Stocks down: Another dull loss for West coast who are averaging just 43 points in their past three games. That's not a score that lands you a finals berth. Don't blame their inaccuracy, either, they have an outdated game plan and don't seem to show any real hunger for the contest. Where to from here?

Western Bulldogs

Stocks up: Caleb Daniel did all he could to try and inspire his team to victory against the Swans. He had 30 disposals, eight clearances, and kicked a rare goal in a losing side.

Stocks down: He was due for a down performance after some ripping outings in recent weeks, so it's only fair Cody Weightman's stock dips just a touch. He'll be disappointed with his output of five touches and one behind.