Collingwood just keeps making the grade this season and the longer the season goes on, the more unsung heroes continue to pop up.
Fremantle, GWS and Richmond also get a run.
Unsung hero #1
He was reprimanded and criticized for his list management decisions at the end of the 2020 season, which, at the time, seemed justified.
Ned Guy, however, has left Collingwood in a plumb spot with his intelligent and gutsy list management decisions.
After trading out Jaidyn Stephenson, Atu Bosenavulagi, Tom Phillips and Adam Treloar for a plethora of draft picks, the Pies can look back at what Guy did and tick it all off given the form it has shown in 2022.
The trading and pick swaps allowed the Pies to gain a strong hand in the 2020 draft as Guy picked up gun forward Oliver Henry, who has had a massive impact.
The moves also allowed the Pies to pick up first-year gun player Nick Daicos – despite Guy stepping down midway through 2021.
It is all looking roses for the Pies now, and the 2020 trade period is well and truly in the rear-view mirror.
Unsung hero #2
Joel Selwood & Tom Hawkins
Joel Selwood and Tom Hawkins were the two blokes who offered their shoulders to chair off Mitch Duncan in his 250th game.
Selwood, who was managed and did not play, saddled up Duncan on his left shoulder alongside Hawkins to a standing ovation at Kardinia Park following the 112-point thrashing of North Melbourne.
They’ll also get a standing ovation from the BetDeluxe crew and Hawkins, who had to do it after two hours of footy.
Unsung hero #3
He is the AFL’s newest Irish recruit taking the league by storm.
Callum Brown, recruited from County Derry in Ireland, put on a goal-kicking in the Giants 22-point win over Hawthorn.
Brown booted four goals from his 13 disposals and proved a match-winner in a tight contest.
He also laid six tackles in ugly conditions and looks like he will be a guaranteed starter from now and till the end of the season.
Unsung hero #4
Nathan Broad does not get enough credit from footy media or stakeholders outside the Richmond Football Club.
He is a genuine gun key-position defender and proved his worth on the weekend with a strong game consisting of a game-high 11 marks.
His 576 metres gained was the best figure for his team against West Coast, and he did his best to repel everything thrown at him.
He ranks as elite in 1-on-1 battles, as elite for intercept marks, his kicking efficiency goes at 84.2%, and he ranks elite for spoils per game.
Everything Damien Hardwick wants in a defender is embodied by Broad.
Unsung hero #5
Fremantle is starting to make headlines for its great form this season, and the big draftees from a few moons ago have developed at a rate of knots.
Andrew Brayshaw and Caleb Serong have been fantastic this season, but the one man who has flown under the radar is James Aish.
He is having a career-best season as a winger and provides plenty of width with the run and carry for the Purple Haze.
He was arguably the best player on the ground in the 99-91 win against Port Adelaide as he collected 29 disposals and kicked two crucial goals.