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AFL SuperCoach 2024 - Team Structure & Navigating the Byes

February 20th 2024, 12:48pm, By: admin

The 2024 AFL SuperCoach season is now just a couple of weeks away which means it’s time to start getting into the serious stuff! We’ve already looked at the best players to pick across each position in our Creating & Building Your SuperCoach Team article, but none of that is important if you don’t know all the basic tips and strategies required to navigate the season. On top of that, the 2024 season promises to be the trickiest yet with eight different bye rounds! 

Here, we cover some of the key concepts that all AFL SuperCoach coaches must know, including team structure and navigating the byes. With that said, let’s get into some of the key tips to help you achieve SuperCoach success.

AFL SuperCoach 2024 – Team Structure & Navigating the Byes

Starting Team Structure 

Although the season is long and there’s plenty of trades available (40 this season), the team you start with is the most important factor in any AFL SuperCoach season. A big part of picking a successful starting team is making sure you’ve got the proper mix of premiums, mid-pricers, and of course rookies/cash cows. With that said, there’s no perfect formula and every season presents different challenges, but there’s still generally two strategies involved with picking your startling lineup which are;

Guns & Rookies: A tried and true method that is fairly self-explanatory. Here, you will typically pick 12-13 premium priced players ($500k+), while filling the rest of your team with rookies that will play early games and generate cash. If you’re just starting out on your SuperCoach journey, then this method is probably the best because it means you won’t fall into the trap of picking any mid-priced players that aren’t SuperCoach relevant and won’t provide and meaningful value to your team. 

Mid-price Madness: This is a high-risk approach which can quickly make or break your season. Here, you will still look to include at least 10 premium priced players and all the best available rookies, but will also take a flyer on a couple of players in the 300k-500k range in attempt to save some salary to spend elsewhere, while still getting great scoring output. Generally, the two reasons why you will pick mid-priced players are because (1) they’re a star available at a discounted price due to their previous season/s being injury-affected, or (2) they’re a player expected to have a different role that is more conducive to SuperCoach scoring (e.g. Ziebell moving to half back in 2021). However, a lot of the time these mid-pricers end up being traps and don’t live up to the hype, hence the term ‘mid-price madness’. So, if you’re going down the route of selecting a number of mid-priced players, it’s important to do your research and make sure there is some method to your madness.  

Nat Fyfe

(Nat Fyfe (pictured above) is expected to be back in the midfield this season)

Navigating the Byes

One of the toughest challenges in AFL SuperCoach each season is navigating the bye rounds, and it’s only gotten tougher in 2024 as we have to deal with eight bye rounds instead of the usual four. In 2024, the bye rounds are in Rounds 2, 3, 5, 6, 12, 13, 14, and 15. The most important thing to note about the bye rounds is that only your best 18 scores from your on-field players will count towards your team’s score for that round. This unique scoring system was brought in to make it easier for coaches to field a full team without copping a ‘donut’ or two. 

So, what’s the best way to navigate the bye rounds to ensure your team scores the most points possible? Let’s break it into two parts; the early byes and the mid-season byes.

The early byes (Rounds 2, 3, 5, 6): These byes are the easiest to navigate as it solely comes down to being smart with who you pick in your starting lineup. Simply put, pick as few players from the teams with an early bye as you can.

The eight teams with a bye in the first six rounds include Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Carlton, Gold Coast, Richmond, GWS, and Collingwood. Their byes will take place over the following rounds:

Round 2: Brisbane, Carlton

Round 3: Gold Coast, GWS

Round 5: Collingwood, Sydney

Round 6: Melbourne, Richmond

Of course, there are a few guys that seem too good to pass up with our starting lineups (e.g. a heavily discounted Brodie Grundy for Sydney) and that’s fine, but ensuring you have as few players as possible from those eight teams will help you maximise your scoring output.

For reference, the 10 teams pictured below are the ones you should be aiming to pick players from to fill out your starting lineup.

AFL teams

The mid-season byes (Rounds 12-15): All 18 teams in the AFL will have a bye at some stage from Rounds 12-15, and while Round 12 might seem like a long way away (and it is), it’s still important to prepare for these byes as early as possible. Failure to take mid-season byes into consideration will likely lead to your team being short-handed in one or two these rounds, which could make all the difference to your season.

With that said, the ideal scenario is to have an even spread of players with byes in each round, so you can field a minimum of 18 players each week. Here is when all 18 clubs have their mid-season bye in 2024:

Round 12: Brisbane, GWS, North Melbourne, Sydney

Round 13: Fremantle, Port Adelaide

Round 14: Carlton, Essendon, Geelong, Gold Coast, Melbourne, West Coast

Round 15: Adelaide Collingwood, Hawthorn, Richmond, St Kilda, Western Bulldogs

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