AFL captains 2018

AFL 2018: Where will your club finish this season?

1. Port Adelaide, AFL champions?

Rising Port Adelaide star Sam Powell-Pepper

Sam Powell-Pepper is poised for a big year with Port Adelaide

Threats all over the park, youngsters coming of age and strong recruitment have Port poised for big things in 2018.

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2. Sydney Swans

Sydney Swans champion Jarrad Mcveigh

Can Sydney Swans champion Jarrad Mcveigh sign off with one more premiership?

The Swannies rebuild only took about six weeks in 2017. They could have pressed for the premiership then, but ran out of gas. They will press for the flag this time around, though.

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3. Essendon Bombers

Essendon Bombers captain Dyson Heppell

Essendon Bombers skipper Dyson Heppell is hoping to reclaim his form of old in 2018

The Bombers bounced back from the ASADA scandal to play finals football in 2017. They will build on that and have a handy addition in Jake Stringer.

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4. GWS Giants

GWS midfielder Toby Greene got in hot water for this hit

GWS midfielder Toby Greene makes contact with the head of Caleb Daniel in 2017

There have been some retirement and injury concerns, but the draft concessions of years gone by still mean GWS has been bred for success.

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5. Geelong

Geelong star Gary Ablett Jnr

Gary Ablett Jnr returns home to the Geelong Cats

The return of Gary Ablett is the big talking point, but is just one weapon in a very full midfield arsenal. A genuine premiership threat.

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6. Melbourne

Melbourne Demons co-captain Jack Viney

Jack Viney will be a key cog in the Melbourne Demons charge this season

The carefully planned rebuild is set to bear fruit this season, with the young brigade coming along nicely and Jake Lever recruited from Adelaide to steel the defences.

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7. Adelaide

Adelaide Crows lose in 2017 grand final

Adelaide Crows dejected after the 2017 AFL grand final loss

The Crows were perhaps lucky to finish as minor premiers in a tightly contested 2017 season. They probably won't be as lucky again in another tight year of footy.

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8. Richmond

Richmond star Dustin Martin

Brownlow medallist Dustin Martin will be crucial for Richmond again this season

Premiership hangovers are real, just ask the Western Bulldogs. Richmond should still be good enough to cling onto a top eight spot, though.

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9. Hawthorn

Hawthorn midfielder Tom Mitchell

Tom Mitchell will be a key figure at Hawthorn

It was a massive fall from grace for the Hawks in 2017, missing the eight for the first time since 2009. And it might be a tough assignment to fight their way back in, with so many teams on the improve.

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10. Collingwood

Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley

Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley will be under enormous pressure in 2018

The Pies were good at getting the ball into the inside 50 last year, but not very effective at converting. A round one smash up doesn't show encouraging signs that has been fixed.

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11. St Kilda

St Kilda midfielder Jack Newnes

Midfielder Jack Newnes will need to step up for St Kilda this season

Life without Nick Riewoldt, can the Saints hack it? Struggling to get past Brisbane suggests probably not.

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12. Western Bulldogs

Western Bulldogs star Marcus Bontempelli

Will Marcus Bontempelli get enough support from the Western Bulldogs this season?

A mighty crash back to earth for the Doggies last year and the fire that propelled them to the 2016 flag seems to be out.

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13. Carlton Blues

Carlton's Charlie Curnow

Charlie Curnow is poised to have a big year for Carlton

The battling Blues have been recruiting and drafting well, but appear years off making a significant impact.

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14. Fremantle Dockers

Fremantle Dockers midfielder Nat Fyfe

Nat Fyfe will be critical to the Fremantle Dockers champion

Triple digit floggings in 2017 is pretty hard to come back from. Especially when there are question marks over your coach's style.

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15. West Coast Eagles

West Coast Eagles ruckman Nic Naitanui

Nic Naitanui returns after 12 months out with a knee injury for the West Coast Eagles

A talent drain from a glut of retirements, including Brownlow medallists Matt Priddis and Sam Mitchell, mean a season of rebuilding for West Coast.

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16. Brisbane Lions

Luke Hodge in his Brisbane Lions strip

Hawthorn premiership winner Luke Hodge has come out of retirement for the Brisbane Lions. Picture: Herald Sun

Will be brave and improve on last season, but finals are still a long way off for the battling Lions

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17. North Melbourne Kangaroos

North Melbourne Kangaroos player Todd Goldstein

Todd Goldstein is one of the few big names the North Melbourne Kangaroos have right now

A young roster lacking genuine star power that will struggle to make an impact on the 2018 season.

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18. Gold Coast Suns

AFL club Gold Coast Suns

The Gold Coast Suns are hoping for a better AFL season than 2017

Started strongly and still boast Tom Lynch (for now), but don't have the roster to play finals football

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About the Author Josh Alston

Josh Alston is a hack with over 12 years industry experience, covering sport across all codes for newspapers and online agencies. Known to frequent grade matches because of their cheap tinnies. Eventually graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism and a Masters in sitting on the hill when the local cricket side was playing. Softball premiership winner, rugby league legend in Year 10 and no stranger to Doomben Racecourse.

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