Player name: Jarryd Lyons
Current club: Adelaide
Potential club: Lyons has yet to declare his intentions for 2016, remaining unsigned during Adelaide’s finals campaign. He originated from Victoria, so if he was to move, Lyons’ destination could be any of the Victorian clubs. Adelaide have always had productive trade negotiations with Carlton, which could be a factor in any potential move for Lyons.
The original price: Adelaide picked up Lyons with their second pick of the 2010 National Draft. The Crows were a busy side in this trade period, offloading earlier draft picks for Richard Tambling and Sam Jacobs. This meant that while Adelaide had a first round pick at 14, their next selection was at pick 61 (obtained from Fremantle for Jon Griffin), where they selected Lyons.
The Good: The removal of the sub vest has reignited Lyons as a footballer, and he has had an excellent season for Adelaide. He reached his 50th game in Round 20 this year, and has produced career-best numbers in all major categories. He is now a mainstay of a strong Crows’ midfield, averaging 21.8 disposals and 4.8 tackles per game. At age 24, Lyons is in his prime and can offer plenty to teams both in their premiership window, or in a ‘reset’.
The Bad: The question mark over Lyons sits within his 2016 breakout season. So often have players had an outstanding year then faded back into mediocrity. From 2011-2015, Lyons was unable to show enough at reserves level to get a consistent spot in Adelaide’s AFL team, and the only concern here would be if Lyons has the ability to build on a strong 2016 campaign at a new club.
What his club wants: While trade talk on Lyons has been limited to speculation relating to his contract status, Adelaide will place a high value on Lyons as he now forms an important part of their best 22. As a ball park figure, the Crows traded a fringe player in Sam Kerridge and pick 28 to Carlton for Troy Menzel in last year’s trade period. Due to his breakout year, Lyons is likely to be rated at a higher level.
What he’s worth: Thanks to his age profile and inside ball winning ability, Lyons has value to almost every side in the competition. He has had no real injury issues over his career, so a suitor will not have persistent injury to concern themselves with.
Despite his breakout season, Lyons is firmly in the middle echelon of midfielders. A very reliable foot soldier, but yet to reach the elite heights or have the ability to win a match off his own boot. Due to this, Lyons is likely to demand either a late first round, or early second round pick. A player or future pick could also be added to any potential trade.
What we’d pay: Pick 19-24
Possible trade scenarios:
- Carlton trades their second selection overall (pick 23), and 2017 second rounder, Adelaide trades Jarryd Lyons and 2016 third selection.
- Western Bulldogs trade Adelaide their second selection overall (Pick 31-36), Adelaide sends Lyons to the Dogs.
- Hawthorn trade their 2017 first round pick to Adelaide, Adelaide trades Lyons to Hawthorn.
The Verdict: With all of their star players locked away, Lyons will be Adelaide’s number one priority to re-sign. He’s been with the Crows for six years now and is now well entrenched in their best 22. With the retirement of Scott Thompson looming either this year or next, Adelaide will need to keep their already strong depth in the inside midfielder stocks. For these reasons, Adelaide will not actively choose to shop Lyons around. The only way Lyons will depart is if the contract offer placed in front of him is deemed unacceptable, or if he wishes to return home to Victoria. Should Lyons do this, and the right offer comes along, Adelaide can bounce back from losing a promising young midfielder.
Star rating: 3.5/5 – while not at the level of elite midfielders such as O’Meara, Prestia and Tom Mitchell, Lyons is a solid performer looking to build on an excellent 2016. He will seamlessly slot into the starting 22 of whomever he is playing for in 2017, whether that be Adelaide or elsewhere.