Tbetta Sunday Preview
DFS Fantasy

Draftstars AFL 23 Sunday Round 12 Tips

Just the back-to-back games on this Draftstars AFL Round 12 Sunday with only the Bombers in the top 8 going into this round. With a couple of key personal out on Sunday, ‘Tbetta’ had some tasty Draftstars options to look at in Sunday’s edition of ‘Stargazing’. 

$60,000 Main ($15 entry, 100 max)
$10,000 High Roller ($150 entry, 3 max)
$5,000 Fiver ($5 entry, 50 max)
$3,000 Mini ($2 entry, 15 max)
$2,500 Buck Hunter ($1 entry, 100 max)
$2,000 Micro ($0.50 entry, 100 max)


GWS vs RICH – GIANTS Stadium: Showers.
ESS vs NTH – Marvel Stadium: Under the roof.



Basement price for a more experienced player like Judson Clarke ($6,000 FWD) always piques the interest levels, with the low salary due to being subbed in 4 of his past 5 matches at AFL level. With an un-subbed average of 53, he’s worth a look – especially if he can replicate that 90-point total against the Bulldogs back in Round 4.

North Melbourne is providing us with plenty to think about on this slate with some nicely-priced options, headlined by Darcy Tucker ($7,240 MID/FWD). I have him lining up in defence and approaching “lock” status on this two-game slate due to his generous price also being sub-affected – he’s averaged 67 points from full games this season. Will Phillips ($9,150 MID/FWD) and Tarryn Thomas ($9,210 MID/FWD) are the other Roos to consider based on salary, but their roles are much less clear in the carousel of availability at Arden Street.

As you’ll see below, I love Harry Himmelberg ($10,640 FWD/DEF) at this price when setting up behind the ball. With very little obvious value in those priced above him in the FWD slots, I’ll likely find myself using him as an anchor in a large percentage of line-ups.

I have plenty to say about Marlion Pickett ($8,790 MID), Harry Perryman ($11,100 MID/DEF) and Zach Merrett ($16,360 MID) below, so scroll down for a more in-depth look at my favourite core MID options on this slate.

Hugh Greenwood’s ($11,810 MID) big few weeks has seen his price rise sharply, but he appears to be a Brett Ratten favourite at centre bounces with 77% attendance last round. I’m inclined to continue to ride this out, because scores like last week’s 114 aren’t a fluke if he’s getting this many MID minutes – he’s proven that at 3 clubs over many years. His skipper Jy Simpkin ($13,480 MID) is also under-priced based on ceiling, but the floor has been concerningly low this year with scores of 48, 58 and 69 littered throughout. Purely an upswing pick for me.

Despite the injury concerns over the past few weeks, a healthy Dylan Shiel ($12,770 MID) smashes this price-tag with Darcy Parish and Will Setterfield missing and just the Roos to contend with. The question then becomes whether you’re sold on his current fitness level – is he cherry ripe, or limping in at 80%?

If you’re looking for a Premium pivot to the highly sought-after Zach Merrett, I really like Tom Green ($16,010 MID) against a Tigers side that never tags. He averages 117 when untagged in 2023, and gets a big tick from the DvP matrix this week, too.

On the flipside, I am concerned about the Tim Taranto ($17,010 MID) train. In a parallel universe he would be lining up for the Giants and having a huge say with Josh Kelly out injured on Sunday. But in this universe, he requested a trade to Richmond where he’s getting all the midfield time he could have ever dreamed of. Can we expect a sour grapes tag here from the Giants, perhaps from a Harry Perryman type? If so, he’s unpickable at this salary.

Many of the big names in AFL DFS went well over the field on Nathan Broad ($10,200 DEF) last week and were handsomely rewarded with a season-high 102, due to filling in for Vlastuin as a distributor. With Richmond’s backline unchanged at selection, he has another excellent chance to hit triple figures on Sunday.

It’s a similar story at GWS with the Lachie twins Whitfield ($12,410 DEF) and Ash ($12,630 DEF) sharing quarterbacking duties in the absence of Isaac Cumming and Nick Haynes. You can invest in that pair with much more confidence than usual with all 12 kick-ins last week shared solely between them.

It’s the North defenders with a soft Bombers date that attracts my attention the most however. Jack Ziebell ($14,600 DEF) has produced scores of 109, 109 and 168 when reeling in at least 9 marks this year, and Harry Sheezel’s redeployment to attack opens him up for a few extra cheapies. Aaron Hall ($13,440 DEF) hasn’t been favoured under Ratten so far, but with scores of 136 and 122 in his last against the Bombers, can he change his new coach’s mind?


Kieren Briggs ($12,250 RUC) has been a DFS golden child in the ruck so far with scores of 84 and 111 since replacing Matt Flynn, but that salary is swelling rapidly. I see Toby Nankervis ($15,590 RUC) as superior in both the air and at ground level, so I’m struggling to see how he racks up again this weekend.

Of course, if that statement is true, then you need to consider Nank as an option in his own right. He’s produced a lowest score of 94 all season and is easily the safest option on this smaller slate.

Samson Ryan ($7,370 RUC/FWD) is the best salary-saving option, freed up by the Ben Miller demotion. Ryan was well below his best as a permanent forward last week with just 26, but don’t forget that he averaged 66 in the previous 5 games as Nank’s sole back-up. As bad as it feels, that would be a huge win at this salary mathematically.



Harry Perryman ($11,100 MID/DEF)

With the Giants losing a pair of important backmen to concussion in the same round, Perryman was asked to reach deep into his wheel bag with a return to an accountable half-back role. Unsurprisingly, it resulted in his lowest score of the year, a middling 59. Now that Himmelberg is back and playing back, surely Perryman is back in the guts? That’s a lot of backs.

With Josh Kelly still out, I expect we’ll see plenty of CBAs for Harry the midfielder – he was granted 79% CBA exposure when Tom Green missed all the way back in Round 6, where he racked up a season-high 24 touches. Great value.

Sam Draper ($10,420 RUC)

The Bombers hate playing Draper as a solo ruck, so I’m operating under the assumption that one of Nick Bryan or Andrew Phillips is promoted from the emergency list prior to bouncedown, much like Bryan was last week in his season debut. Even if that’s not the case, I have concerns over Draper’s scoring ability with the Goldstein match-up. North now ranks as the hardest team for RUCs to score against this year, with Draper managing scores of just 51 and 64 against them over his short career so far.

Ben Hobbs ($12,070 MID/FWD)

The young Bomber has had a great run as an inside midfielder with averages of 47% CBA’s and 95 fantasy points this past fortnight, but those centre bounces are in danger of drying up with Dylan Shiel back from injury. Working in his favour is Essendon’s smaller forward line and the long list of crumbing types, so expect him to be more high half forward than forward pocket when he loses those CBAs.

At the end of the day, Hobbs needs to hit 110 at the price to be in a winning line-up, and I doubt he has that kind of ceiling in him without the full-time inside role.



Pickett Fancy

It’s always interesting to see what subtle changes caretaker coaches make when they’re promoted into the driver’s seat, but the team-high 78% CBA’s for Marlion Pickett ($8,790 MID) was as subtle as a sledgehammer from Andrew McQualter. He only managed 50 fantasy points against Port with those rotations, but they’re the 3rd-hardest team for inside MIDs this year so I’m not too concerned. The important thing is that the role is there, and at that price-tag, you can’t lose.


With Nick Haynes remaining in concussion protocols for another week, it’s a foregone conclusion that Harry Himmelberg ($10,640 FWD/DEF) lines up in defence this week. If you played DFS last year you’d know what a monstrous difference this makes to his output, with the swingman averaging 55 points as a forward compared to 101 points as a defender in 2022. Richmond’s juicy DvP for backmen is just the cherry on top.

Merrett’s Bunnies

It’s always tough to recommend picking players above $16k because we always preach value, value, value, and that’s mathematically tough for someone like Zach Merrett ($16,360 MID) to reach. To get to even 8X value on Sunday, he has to score an intimidating 131 points – but thankfully, Zach makes my job easy this week. Not only has he ticked over at 135 over the past fortnight, but he also scored a whopping 172 points when these two sides met in Round 20 last season.



North – DEF Stack

Essendon now ranks as the easiest team for DEFs to score against in the last 5, thanks to the ping-pong style that Brad Scott has finally instilled in his squad. They love to share it around their backline before finally launching a scoring effort, where it’s usually turned over. The opposition team are then incentivised to pass it around in a similar way, thanks to the big numbers advantage behind the ball that Essendon organically created for them.

Now, we know that North defaults to playing this way anyway, with all of Jack Ziebell, Harry Sheezel and Aaron Hall milking easy touches in the backline over the course of 2023. With the Bombers conceding the 2nd-most marks this year, look to stack the defensive types that scale on cheap +6 combos.

Essendon – MID Targets

The Roos might not have been competitive on the scoreboard, but they’ve definitely clamped down on the statistical leakages over the past few weeks. The one place they can’t fake it is in the midfield where they’re heavily outclassed weekly – the top 5 scorers for the Pies last week were MIDs for example, and that’s a team that doesn’t muck around with the footy. Buy those Bombers, who do.

GWS – DEF Stack

It didn’t come to fruition last week with the Port Adelaide defenders, but I’m backing in the year-long trend here. Lachie Whitfield, Lachie Ash and Harry Himmelberg will be the most popular combos (especially as you can slot HH into the FWD slots), but don’t forget the more lockdown types for an upswing. Richmond concedes the 2nd-most fantasy goodness to General DEFs this year.


Ready to go? Draftstars multi game Saturday slate will close at 1.10pm AEST. ENTER NOW!

Chances are you’re about to lose. For free and confidential support call 1800 858 858 or visit gamblinghelponline.org.au


For free and confidential support call 1800 858 858 or visit gamblinghelponline.org.au.