The ratings story this week is a drop for our two ladder leaders and a jump for most of the chasing pack (Adelaide, Sydney and West Coast). Adelaide and Sydney are tracking towards rare ratings territory at this stage of the season, with Adelaide having a better offensive rating and Sydney a better defensive rating than any complete season recorded since 1998.
(The post where we introduced these simple inside-50 and scoring efficiency based measures is found here)
GWS and Geelong remain the top two sides but are joined as teams with above-average ratings for all three measures by West Coast, whose inside 50 scoring efficiency now barely ticks above 100% after a comprehensive demolition of Gold Coast.
Sydney and Adelaide maybe making history
Sydney move up by virtue of a win over a decent side. They had a very good defensive and offensive outing, but even their midfield strength rating rises slightly because the strength of a number of Sydney’s past opponents (Carlton, Collingwood, Richmond, Adelaide and West Coast) has risen this week.
Sydney’s current defensive rating is stronger than any team’s complete season since at least 1998, slightly stronger than their 2012 season, St Kilda in 2009, and Adelaide’s 2005 season. That is to say, we’ve not seen a team render their opponents so inefficient per inside-50 in at least the last 18 years.
Close behind in the overall ratings are Adelaide, whose midfield getting the better of GWS (62-52 inside 50s) pushes them to 99.5% of league average for the year – essentially average. Their forward scoring potency (scoring shots and goals per inside-50) remains the league’s best, and in fact better than any complete season since 1998. This means that even average midfield supply makes them quite dangerous.
Adelaide’s combination of a very strong forward efficiency with an essentially average midfield and defence is a relatively rare one. The closest models are Port Adelaide in 2004 (permiers) and North Melbourne in 1998 (runners up), but both were more balanced, with somewhat weaker forward lines and stronger midfields and defences.
Finally, here’s a visualisation of the current ratings for 2016: