The final game of the 2021 AFL season has been completed and all of the data sits in front of us to determine who is the 2021 Brownlow Medal winner! Round 23 was an absolute classic round with several dramatic matches and some amazing results. The main Brownlow focus was Friday night's game where the two Brownlow favourites in Ollie Wines and Marcus Bontempelli went head to head! The Brownlow Medal could very well be decided upon in that match, and if that's the case, then it will be Wines who will claim 'Charlie' on Brownlow night. However if it's tighter than expected then Clayton Oliver and Jack Steele did their chances no harm with brilliant performances in Round 23.
Just a reminder that we'll have further articles in the coming weeks which break down our full Brownlow counts including team totals, round breakdowns, live betting strategy and betting recommendations! Please don't ask us for our full Brownlow data sheets as we'll be publishing everything you need!
Check out our analysis and 2021 Brownlow Medal vote predictions for every game of Round 23 below!
You’ll be able to stay up to date with our 2021 Brownlow Medal leaderboard with links to round-by-round voting posted there.
2021 AFL Brownlow Medal Vote Predictions - Round 23
Western Bulldogs 10.4.64 def by Port Adelaide 9.12.66
What a cracking way to start the round as the Power fought back to claim a top 2 spot on the ladder, and a home final, against the Dogs. Travis Boak was superb with 31 disposals, 5 marks and 2 goals in a best-on-ground performance. It was billed as the Brownlow showdown and it’s Ollie Wines who may have just done enough to pinch ‘Charlie’ at the death with 34 disposals, 9 tackles and 1 goal certainly worthy of a couple of votes. Robbie Gray (25 disposals, 6 clearances, 2 goals) and Scott Lycett (22 disposals, 40 hitouts) were next best. Jack Macrae had 29 disposals, 8 marks and 6 tackles for the Dogs, but while Marcus Bontempelli started on fire, he faded badly and won’t pick up votes here.
Travis Boak - 3
Ollie Wines - 2
Robbie Gray - 1
Richmond 12.11.83 drew with Hawthorn 12.11.83
The Hawks were cruising in a lacklustre game but somehow the Tigers rushed five goals in the last few minutes to pinch a draw they didn’t deserve. Jaeger O’Meara (36 disposals, 7 marks, 6 clearances) and Tom Mitchell (36 disposals, 6 marks, 5 tackles) were everywhere, while Chad Wingard (30 disposals, 5 tackles, 6 clearances, 2 goals) will also contend for votes. There were a number of other solid contributions but those three stand out and should catch the votes but the order is tough to determine.
Chad Wingard - 2
Jaegar O’Meara - 2
Tom Mitchell - 2
Sydney 21.10.136 def Gold Coast 6.13.49
The Swans were impressive as they thumped the hapless Suns to take some momentum into September action. Jordan Dawson just did as he pleased as he amassed 33 disposals, 16 marks and a goal in a fantastic game. Justin McInerney (29 disposals, 12 marks) and Jake Lloyd (36 disposals, 8 marks) also won plenty of ball, while up forward it was Lance Franklin (6 goals, 13 disposals, 7 marks) and Isaac Heeney (20 disposals, 6 marks, 3 goals) who delivered. Touk Miller was tireless as always with 37 disposals and 9 tackles for the Suns.
Jordan Dawson - 3
Lance Franklin - 2
Isaac Heeney - 0.5
Touk Miller - 0.5
Brisbane 19.11.125 def West Coast 13.9.87
It was the most exciting 38-point victory of all time as the Brisbane fans were going bananas after the Lions took until the dying moments of the game to cover the margin they required to pinch a top four spot, and the double chance, from the Bulldogs. Lachie Neale (29 disposals, 8 tackles, 6 clearances, 1 goal), Daniel Rich (29 disposals, 6 marks and Dayne Zorko (27 disposals, 8 tackles, 6 clearances, 1 goal) were best for the Lions. Nic Naitanui was enormous with 24 disposals, 11 clearances and 53 hitouts while Luke Shuey (35 disposals, 12 clearances) also led from the front.
Lachie Neale - 2
Nit Naitanui - 2
Daniel Rich - 1
Dayne Zorko - 1
Geelong 12.5.77 def by Melbourne 12.9.81
What an amazing way to decide the minor premiership! Geelong blew a 44-point lead in the third quarter with Max Gawn kicking a goal after the siren to snatch an unbelievable victory. Gawn was magnificent with 25 disposals, 6 marks, 7 clearances, 39 hitouts and the match-winning goal. Clayton Oliver was also superb with 37 disposals, 7 tackles, 9 clearances and 2 goals and those two were clearly the best two on the ground. Joel Selwood was best for the Cats with 28 disposals, 6 tackles, 6 clearances and 1 goal.
Clayton Oliver - 3
Max Gawn - 2
Joel Selwood - 1
Carlton 11.9.75 def by GWS Giants 12.17.89
It wasn’t convincing, but the Giants will head into September in winning form after getting past Carlton. Callan Ward (28 disposals, 5 tackles, 7 clearances, 2 goals), Josh Kelly (29 disposals, 5 tackles, 5 clearances) and Tim Taranto (29 disposals, 5 marks, 11 clearances) won plenty of ball and should feature in the votes. Carlton’s Ed Curnow might separate them with his 25 disposals, 8 marks and 4 goals.
Callan Ward - 3
Ed Curnow - 2
Josh Kelly - 0.5
Tim Taranto - 0.5
St.Kilda 17.5.107 def Fremantle 6.13.49
A disappointing end to the season for Freo, who were still live to make the eight, but the Saints were too strong in Hobart. Jake Steele is probably the best chance in the Brownlow outside of the top two, and he should finish the season with another 3 votes here for his 36 disposals, 7 marks, 6 tackles and 6 clearances. Rowan Marshall (21 disposals, 7 tackles, 13 hitouts, 2 goals) was influential and Cooper Sharman (15 disposals, 6 marks, 4 goals) converted up forward. Caleb Serong is one to watch for next season as he collected 35 disposals, 7 marks and 9 clearances to be Freo’s best.
Jack Steele - 3
Cooper Sharman - 2
Caleb Serong - 1
Essendon 16.6.102 def Collingwood 9.10.64
With 8th spot on the ladder locked up, the Bombers cruised to a victory over the Pies in an uninspiring game. It’s a tricky game for votes with no real standouts as most players ticked over in 3rd gear. Devon Smith (23 disposals, 7 marks, 2 goals) played his best game of the season, while Jake Stringer (24 disposals, 6 clearances, 2 goals) and Peter Wright (13 disposals, 8 marks, 4 goals) were influential. Taylor Adams (31 disposals, 6 tackles, 10 clearances) was the leading ball winner on the ground, while Jamie Elliott (18 disposals, 8 marks, 4 goals) was also good for the Pies.
Devon Smith - 3
Taylor Adams - 2
Jake Stringer - 1
Adelaide 13.20.98 def North Melbourne 8.6.54
It was a pretty sad end to the season for North as they played like wooden spooners while Adelaide jumped a couple of spots on the ladder to end the season on a high. Ben Keays (38 disposals, 6 tackles, 6 clearances, 2 goals) and Rory Laird (40 disposals, 8 tackles, 10 clearances) ran rampant through the midfield, with support from Rory Sloane (27 disposals, 7 tackles, 6 clearances) and Harry Schoenberg (24 disposals, 8 tackles, 6 clearances, 1 goal). Aaron Hall (37 disposals) capped off a great season with another strong game while Tarryn Thomas (26 disposals, 7 tackles, 1 goal) is a player to watch in future.
Ben Keays - 3
Rory Laird - 2
Rory Sloane - 0.5
Aaron Hall - 0.5
For those who need a refresher on how our Brownlow vote predictor system works, we assign 6 votes per game so that our total votes are the same as the official 3-2-1 system, however we break up those votes as we see fit across potentially more than three players. Some games are really tough to call which way the votes will go, so a better predictive model is to split performances and assign half points to each player where there is doubt. So for example if two players dominate and it's too hard to split their performance, they are given 2.5 votes each, with the remaining 1 vote given to another player(s). This will give us a predictive total closer to their true total, rather than guessing. We can then form a 'range' for each player (i.e. a min and max we think players can poll) with the thinking behind this that the variations from the half votes will even out over the long term.
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