Former Geelong and Sydney forward Daniel Menzel has ranked who he believes to be the top five number one draft picks selected in the 2010s.
He has left out those taken in 2020 or later given they haven’t yet played enough games to truly judge.
David Swallow was the number one pick of the 2010 draft and the first player eligible for this list, with Matt Rowell in 2019 the last player eligible.
While coveted, the top draft selection didn’t produce too many superstars in this decade, the top five remains a capable group.
Those that missed out on Menzel’s list: Jon Patton (GWS, 2011), Paddy McCartin (St Kilda, 2013), Tom Boyd (GWS, 2014), Cam Rayner (2017, Brisbane), Matt Rowell (2019, Gold Coast)
See the top five from Sportsday SA below:
5. Andrew McGrath (Essendon, 2016)
“He has probably struggled to reach the heights that was expected of him since (his debut season), that’s potentially why he doesn’t rank higher than number five,” Menzel said.
4. David Swallow (Gold Coast, 2010)
“He has been in the AFL now for over 10 years, he’s captained the club, he’s won the best and fairest and played 220 games.”
“I found it difficult to rank him because maybe he hasn’t played 200 very good games, but it’s longevity.”
3. Sam Walsh (Carlton, 2018)
“98 games, All-Australian, and he could be higher on this list but with only 98 games under the belt, I didn’t put him ahead of the top two.”
2. Jacob Weitering (Carlton, 2015)
“150 games – he has been in the All-Australian squad four times, explains the consistency of his career, he’s won two best and fairests at Carlton – it’s a pretty good career so far and I still think he goes under the radar.”
1. Lachie Whitfield (GWS, 2012)
“203 games, All-Australian in 2018, a couple of best and fairests.”
“He’s a bit maligned from the outside, potentially could have had a better career, but again I think he’s played some outstanding footy.
“His silky skills, he probably should be ranked higher on people’s lists in terms of midfielders.”