This post was my first article published on theroar.com.au:
With Jack Watts, Bryce Gibbs and Luke Hodge all being traded this year, it struck me, just how good are the number one draft picks?
So, I went back over the history books and analysed just how good the number one picks were.
I went as far back as the 1990 draft. This was the first AFL-era draft so it’s as good as any for starting. I decided to omit the first four years and write them off as the clubs finding their feet in the draft.
What struck me immediately was the number of players that changed clubs. Whether it be through delisting, trading or free agency a total of 15 of 27 draftees, or 55.55% have finished playing at a different club.
Only three clubs – Essendon, Geelong and Gold Coast – have not traded a player taken with the first selection.
Adelaide, Port Adelaide, North Melbourne and, remarkably, Fitzroy never have had the (dis)honour of holding the number one pick, while Hawthorn traded to receive the pick they would use on Luke Hodge.