19. Jamie Elliott
NAB Cup: 3
NAB Cup: 3
Key AFL Statistics (averages in brackets):
Disposals: 251 (12.6) Marks: 90 (4.5) Tackles: 58 (2.9) Inside 50s: 46 (2.3) Score Assists: 26 (1.3) Marks Inside 50: 35 (1.8) Tackles Inside 50: 23 (1.1) Contested Marks: 14 (0.7)
Overview: A super season that transformed the Euroa youngster from a bit player into an integral cog in the Collingwood engine. His year started with an attempted screamer against Essendon in the NAB Cup before it all came together in front of 84,247 fans against Carlton in round two. The day started with the focus on the two senior coaches but finished squarely on the man in the No. 19 jumper. Elliott received three Brownlow votes for his five goals and 20 possessions, including two that sunk the old enemy in the tense final quarter. He had to cope with some extra attention from then on but he handled it well, bagging three against Hawthorn the following week and another three against Geelong in round eight. After a mild dip in form mid-season, Elliott finished off the year well, kicking three in successive weeks against Essendon and Sydney but had an interrupted lead in to the finals after sustaining a minor hamstring injury. In all, he kicked 30 goals in 20 games and went without a major on only six occasions. What’s more, he held two Mark of the Year contenders including the overall winner when he flew over three Port Adelaide opponents in round 14. A bright future beckons.
To consider: It’s easy to forget that Elliott has only just turned 21. He was used as the substitute in two games in the second half of the year and was the man handed the red vest during the Elimination Final against Port Adelaide. It means that he has been involved as a substitute in the first three finals of his career.
They said it: “We’ve seen his marking ability and this is the first game where he’s hit the scoreboard and taken most of his chances. You put all those little bits together and he’s a dangerous proposition for us,” – coach Nathan Buckley liked what he saw after Elliott kicked five against Carlton in round two on 7 April.
Memorable Moment: It’s impossible to go past his five goal performance against the Blue Baggers…or is it? That screamer against Port Adelaide that won him the Mark of the Year award was quite special. His hanger against Gold Coast three weeks later isn’t far behind, either. Elliott’s highlights reel is quite impressive – and he’s only two years into his career.
What happens next? The sky is (literally) the limit for the high flying small forward. It’s as if Elliott has shown us what he’s capable of and is now placed to put it all together in the coming years. Is Jamie the man to follow on from the legends of Daicos, Davis and Didak as the most mercurial Magpie inside 50?