Mar 28, 2022


The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Two


Footy is a passion, not some cold hearted, spread sheet dominated rational exercise. 

On a Monday, you want irrational reaction. You want emotion to trump reason.

What you really want is idiotic hysteria.

You've come to the right place.

Western Bulldogs (90) v Carlton (102)

Are we living in a world where Carlton are a competent football side?

It’s a terrifying thought and the last thing we need in these bleak times.

Carlton have been bad for so long that anyone under the age of 25 can’t remember what it was like when they won regularly.

But like the herpes virus lying dormant in the body for years, the threat has never really gone away. Carlton has always been lurking, threatening to spring back to life.

Only decades of administrative incompetence have protected us but that’s now waning. We need a booster.

The only hope we have, is this start to the season is false hope, but I struggle to think of any examples of Carlton offering false hope early in the year before falling away faster than my mate Darren when it’s his shout.

But Carlton fans should be ecstatic. Their team is so good at the moment they don’t even need to be coached.

Bulldogs fans didn’t even get Bevo chewing out a journalist to distract them from the loss this week.

The Doggies have had bad starts before and recovered, but like someone wanting to be a politician, there is something just off about them.

Sydney (107) v Geelong (77)

Good news for the AFL this week.

They got an iconic moment in a city they’ve been trying to crack for decades, and they saved a fortune on security.

Buddy’s 1000th goal was one of the great moments in footy history.

He is truly one of the all-time greats and has a highlight reel that is a bit like what you dreamt yourself doing on the field when you were a kid. Or as an adult.

When the moment came, it was truly electric, as the fans streamed onto the ground.

Buddy received in twenty minutes more human contact than I’ve had in my lifetime.

Then it got weird.

The AFL had prepared about as well as the US government did on January 6, 2021, except more people stormed the SCG than the US Capitol, and the SCG is a building of enormous importance.

At first, it was fine but as it went on it looked dangerous as Buddy, somehow not ringed by his teammates, was left to fend off thousands of mobile phone wielding fans.

I love the tradition, and everyone seems to be ok, but it really felt like the AFL walked a tightrope and only narrowly pulled it off.

Despite the chaos, there were some lovely moments, like when the woman poured her Nan’s ashes out of a plastic bag, with the ashes gently drifting over the mob. What a wonderful way to honour a memory.

It took 36 minutes for play to resume as the handful of security guards looked like parents trying to calm down a group of kids who had consumed way too much red cordial.

Underlining the complete chaos of the night, was Matthew Richardson interviewing Buddy once he was safely back in the sheds, using a long microphone stand, as heaven forbid anyone got close to Franklin.

This abundance of caution was somewhat undercut by Richo then shaking Buddy’s hand following the interview.

Despite all this, it was an amazing moment, and surely Buddy will be Australian of the Year, rather than wasting it on some doctor who has cured a disease.

Geelong also participated in this game.

Collingwood (100) v Adelaide (58)

Another game, another interruption, with the MCG evacuated during the second quarter following a small fire in a food outlet.

The damage was two pies, three chips and a burger. This being the MCG catering, that adds up to just over $1 million in damages.

If the evacuation had happened in the third quarter, I’m tipping not many in the crowd would have come back, such was the quality of the second half.

The Crows looked like a team unfamiliar with a football as they fumbled, dropped marks, missed handballs and had kicks sail so far over the heads of targets that it’s possible this was a promotion for the upcoming Melbourne International Comedy Festival.

It was the third quarter when things really went off the rails for the Crows, with Collingwood piling on seven goals.

The Pies looked good but were certainly helped by the Crows deciding to let wave at them as they ran through the central corridor, rather than try to stop them.

Collingwood now sits second on the ladder, like we need more signs of the upcoming apocalypse.

Essendon (75) v Brisbane (97)

There was some good news for Essendon supporters this week, their team remembered they had a game on.

So good was their first quarter the Bombers fans were left wondering where the hell had this effort been last week.

Unfortunately, while the first quarter was impressive, the last three quarters was a slowly unfolding disaster for them, as Lachie Neale decided he felt like winning.

His 41 disposals and two goals led the way back for the Lions, helped by the fact that the Bombers seemed keen to experiment with new ways to stuff up forward entries.

To rub salt in the wound, Joe Daniher didn’t even do anything really stupid.

If the scoreboard wasn’t ugly enough, Zach Merrett, who was one of the Bombers' best, suffered a syndesmosis injury and will now need six to eight weeks off, and young Nik Cox also went off injured.

It’s Essendon’s worst start to a season since their last worst start to a season.

Port Adelaide (56) v Hawthorn (120)

For a team meant to be challenging for a Premiership, Port Adelaide are doing a pretty good impression of a team in the running for the wooden spoon.

To lose to Hawthorn, who are meant to be rebuilding, on Adelaide Oval, and in the way they lost, is hard to put into words.

Luckily, Ken Hinkley did it for us, saying of the performance, "It's maximum disappointment.”

‘Maximum disappointment’ could be the Power’s membership slogan this year.

Worryingly for Port, they got heaps of the ball, they just didn’t know what to do with it when they got it.

Hawthorn, to their credit, just did everything well, and when your opponent is shooting themselves in the foot every couple of minutes, that’s all you need to do.

Up forward, Mitch Lewis booted five goals, including four goals in 28-minutes, which, when you consider Port only kicked seven goals from the game, is a big impact.

Port certainly had chances up forward, and their 14 behinds were certainly on brand, if their brand is ‘Maximum disappointment’, which it is.

The result sees Hawthorn sitting top of the ladder, which, like a Clive Palmer ad on YouTube, no one asked for.

Gold Coast (69) v Melbourne (82)

When I grow up, I want to be Jake Bowey. In his nine games of AFL football, Bowey has never experienced the sting of defeat and he’s already won a premiership.

AFL football may seem easy for Bowey, but it’s never been any easier than Saturday night, as the Suns kept kicking the ball to him as if he was wearing a lifeguard uniform.

Bowey had 34 disposals, and 16 intercepts as he feasted off the Suns' poor entry into the forward fifty.

Not that the Suns were bad. They clogged Melbourne up, made them earn everything.

Touk Miller set the tone for the Suns early with 17 disposals in the opening quarter which is frankly ridiculous.

Many of us wouldn’t get 17 disposals in an entire game of footy.

Not be shown up, Christian Petracca picked up 41 possessions, while Luke Jackson showed that you can be 6.5 and still move like a cat, which shouldn’t really be allowed.

It’s like being good looking and clever, there is something unnatural about it.

North Melbourne (74) v West Coast (59)

The question, 'can North Melbourne beat a WAFL side?' Has finally been answered.

The Eagles had 14 changes from last week’s side, so rather than a game, this was more a meet and greet for the players.

With all the changes, it perhaps isn’t surprising the Eagles struggled and Jack Darling, on his return to the side, had just six disposals and had trouble injecting himself into the game.

North had the benefit of all their players having met each other before, but they didn’t have everything go their way with Tarryn Thomas going off injured.

Luke Davies-Uniacke was another casualty, part of Willie Rioli’s campaign to injure an opponent in every game this season.

North’s greater cohesion was evident throughout the game, with Nick Larkey being the main beneficiary with six goals.

The Eagles though did give it a fair crack, but it’s almost like making 14 forced changes in a week is not conducive to good football.

Richmond (109) v Greater Western Sydney (73)

The last time these two played on the MCG was the 2019 Grand Final when the Giants played a solid single quarter before getting out of the way of Richmond’s celebrations.

Back in 2019, it was a far simpler time.

A lot has changed since then, but again some things never change.

Like Razor Ray throwing up during this match. Is there anything this guy won’t do to get attention?

Things didn’t start well for the Giants, with Phil Davis going down with a hamstring injury.

Key outs were a real problem for the Giants, while Richmond were at full strength, missing only fringe players Dustin Martin, Dion Prestia, Dylan Grimes and Jack Riewoldt.

Richmond were just better organised and had the luck.

When Davis did his hamstring, it was chasing Noah Balta, who would go on to kick four goals, proving again what a great key forward he is. 

Just how good are Richmond? I could see them being the team AFL commentators describe as ‘not at their best but you wouldn’t want to meet in the finals.’

Fremantle (55) v St Kilda (65)

Less a game and more a competition to see who could let down their fans the most.

St Kilda started strongly in this regard, relying on their strong suit, missing easy shots at goal.

They finished the first half 2.7 as Saints fans threw things at their TV.

But Fremantle aren’t slouches when it comes to decimating their supporters’ morale.

And it was the third quarter where the Dockers produced a masterclass, with a display of disposal so poor, it had to be seen to be believed.

It was the creativity of their turnovers that I really admired.

The Saints, despite their strong effort in the first half, suddenly lost the ability to miss goals, with Max King and Jack Higgins both kicking three in the third quarter.

It led to a fourth-quarter where both teams tried to lose, but found it difficult, Fremantle however, able to disappoint their fans in person, found another gear, neutral.

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here:




Mar 28, 2022

Dustin Martin, Dion Prestia, Dylan Grimes and Jack Riewoldt AND Nick Vlaustin.


Mar 28, 2022

“Jack Darling, on his return to the side, had just six disposals and had trouble injecting himself into the game.”

Given what delayed Darling’s return to footy, nicely done.

Roger Williams

Mar 28, 2022

You’re in top form Titus, another great wrap.


Mar 28, 2022

Thank you Titus, it's great to have you back.

Captain Munchies

Mar 28, 2022

Wonderful work Titus. You are too kind to Freo. I think we are cursed. Our ‘at least we are not as crap as’ security blankets are being wrenched away. St Kilda were terrible but by god, we were simply appalling.

Danny Schoenmaker

Mar 28, 2022

As a former English teacher I am constantly annoyed by the overuse of word “surreal” applied by AFL players to describe everything from their first game to being involved in an unlikely victory.
But after the events of Friday night, what with the 1000th goal, a crowd invasion, a fairly handy crowd mark of the footy, the ashes of a deceased supporter drifting thru CHF, mindless social media self promotion, a picnic on the outer wing, a Cat player shirt front & wallet & keys being returned, a marriage proposal & 2 seemingly lost Swans wandering down the street….
Now that is the pure definition of “surreal”
Never let it be used in pressers from 1st gamers again 🥰


Mar 28, 2022

I hope Judas Dawson enjoys his Mummy's cooking because he ain't gonna enjoy playing for these losers.


Mar 28, 2022

BIG FELLA i am so glad the fire and removal of fans during the game was at the GEE. Had it been during the dockers/saints game i am sure most of the crowd would have opted to stay out of the ground and go to the pub so as not to put themselves through the pain of watching the rest of the game.When it comes to the skill level of the dockers/saints the AFL would be within their rights to put this game out on dvd with the saver this is not the skills needed to play AFL FOOTY. Another game another win and young bowey must be thinking how bloody easy is this game.GO DEES and bring on the bombers.


Mar 28, 2022

Thanks to all of you who happily bagged Hawthorn's chances against Port Adelaide . And thanks to you , Titus , for your incessant bagging of Hawthorn because it's the most successful club in the last 60 years. I can't help suspecting your anti - Hawthorn prejudice stems in large part from the 1988 Grand Final .( I didn't enjoy the one sided thrashing either much either ,actually.) The Hawks -just like your Melbourne have won 13 Flags, The difference is Hawthorn won its first in 1961 , Melbourne won its first in 1900 and its second in 1926 , the year after Hawthorn joined the VFL. I'm an old fart of 73 lucky enough to have been alive for all of the Hawks' Flags and am certainly not complaining it'll be a few years before they snag another one and other clubs will get a go - I'm hoping for the perennially unlucky Saints. In my childhood I was regularly taken to matches and saw the Hawks beaten much more often than not.The dominant side of my childhood was ... Melbourne. Here are the years the Demons won Flags in that era with the Hawks' finishing spot in brackets, noting the VFL had 12 teams with a Final Four: 1955 (8th.) '56 (7th.) '57 (3rd.) '59 (7th.) 1960 (5th.) 1964 (5th.) So in a way the Hawks and the Dees have similar histories in that when one side has been up, the other one has been down. So stop bloody bagging them please. And thanks for reading my rant.


Mar 28, 2022

So it was Clive Palmers fault? Thanks for your incisive observation Titus. Aside from the fact we played like Under 12s, I’ve been struggling to put my finger on what went wrong.

Con Cushion

Mar 28, 2022

Turn it up Titus ... are we talking Herpes Simplex 1 or Simplex 2? Think I'm going to have to make an appointment with you! Con Cushion.

The g train

Mar 28, 2022

According to Hinkley “It's maximum disappointment.” I hope he’s talking about a local maximum and not a global one.

Don’t under estimate StK’s magnificent victory in The West. This saintly win puts them as a legit chance to make the Top 13 this season. In my opinion. It’s their first victory in The West since Robert Harvey was still wiggling his hips and played the greatest game of all time to help StK defeat WCEs in about 2002.

Re: “Dockers produced a masterclass, with a display of disposal so poor, it had to be seen to be believed”. And yet miserable are those supporters who had no seen but still believed.

Jim Downey

Mar 28, 2022

I totally agree with your sentiment re Carlton. We dont want them coming good !!#@!*!...Go Pies


Mar 28, 2022

Like most normal people, I hate the pies the most out of all teams, and I truly hate it when my team has to play them. Luckily this past weekend, both me and my Crow boys decided to give the game a miss altogether, and I think it was probably a good choice in the end.

3rd Man Up

Mar 28, 2022

Thanks Titus. You make the end times almost enjoyable.
Isaac Heeney deserves a shoutout for the most overlooked 5-goal performance ever.


Mar 28, 2022

I would have thought there might have been something in there about "Zorko the great" racking up 33 disposals on one leg, off half back.
Unstoppable that man!

Anthony Browne

Mar 28, 2022

Titus, leave Carlton alone. 27 years of mismanagement, lack of the Essendon drugs, no more paper bags of money under the table in contracts. It has taken a long time to kick these habits and now we are moving to new Golden years. Bluuueeeeeeesssss.


Mar 28, 2022

“Maximum disappointment” is my new personal mantra. 😂


Mar 28, 2022

Danhawque, the key difference between Titus' rants and yours is that his are funny.

Darren J Ray

Mar 28, 2022

Beautiful stuff. And I promise I'll stick around next time it's my shout!

Fat Side

Mar 28, 2022

To be fair to Razor Ray, I'm pretty sure the umps are instructed to throw up during general play, just not at centre bounces.

Too Happy to be Blue but still a Bagger!

Mar 28, 2022

Titus, at the risk of making you catatonicI really must point out that Carlton has so far beaten the last three premiers. Ok, the Demons was a pre-season game, but we beat them, then Richmond in Round 1 only to cap it off with Footscray in the second round.. As for false hope, I still haven't forgotten the year they beat Brisbane for the pre-season flag and then wooden spooned. So I'm trying to curb my delight and expectations just in case they've peaked too early.

Leigh Donoghue

Mar 28, 2022

Did anyone else think the Sydney pitch invasion looked like an attack of the coronavirus when viewed from above? Can’t get the image out of my mind. Poor Buddy. Truly “surreal”.

Jason Williams

Mar 28, 2022

Titus, another crack me up Monday Knee Jerk

Unfortunately I believed the hype coming out of Crows HQ over summer, but once again it's looking a dire season for us. We may be a young side but there ain't much substance to us.

I feel sorry for Jordan Dawson who believed the same Crows HQ hype and requested a trade "home", only to now discover he may never play finals again before his career is over.

Demon Chris

Mar 28, 2022

You are so right about the millennials not understanding how good Carlton once were. When Toby Greene was cited for umpire contact last year I mentioned the Greg Williams umpire incident and our 21 y.o. Work experience kid was all ‘who?’ I said yeah he played with Sticks and Bradley when Carlton were sh$t hot and he was all ‘they were?’.

Really interesting thing is that Diesel got 9 weeks for a brush off and Toby got 3 (upgraded to 6) for a bigger contact - the head is now sacrosanct but the umpires are fair game.


Mar 28, 2022

"MIKE MAR 28, 2022
Danhawque, the key difference between Titus' rants and yours is that his are funny."
That's true Mike. Another key difference is I wasn't trying to be funny. I was , however , factual . And that was the point.
You don't like the Hawks either , eh ?

Rhombus Isotope

Mar 28, 2022

It was interesting that so many Port players approach to the Russell Ebert Memorial game was to spend most of the game playing dead.

Mac Hawk

Mar 28, 2022

Yeah, I am also a thrid gen Hawk supporter since 1957 and remember the days when Melbourne were unstoppable and Hawthorn were clawing their way up from joke status. But I love Titus' respectful loathing of us Hawks in contrast to his utterly disrespectful loathing of the club we used to call the 'Cheating cheque book Champions".
Don't know if Sammy and his baby Hawks can pull another one out of the hat this coming round but would love to see them really take it up to the overhyped Criminal Inc.

Dock me!

Mar 28, 2022

We come here for the satirical humour.
If you weren’t trying to be funny, no one here gives a rats arse!
Go and get ‘factual’ on the miriad of other forums set up to cater for the likes of you (and me!).


Mar 28, 2022

I'm also a Hawks fan and I'm also a fan of Titus' loathing of us.

One of the funniest things I've seen was Titus' posting of a baby and describing it as a long suffering Hawks' fan who'd never seen a premiership.

Keep it up, Titus, and may you have plenty of chances to loathe our victories in times to come!


Mar 28, 2022

I'm pretty sure you've said you don't have any mates, and I doubt any called 'Darren'. Does this mate 'Darren' get denied entry to the MCC for inappropriate everything?


Mar 28, 2022

Regarding the Dockers and their ability to 'decimate morale'. Is that even possible Titus? Decimate comes from the Latin word decimatus which was to remove one out of every 10 men from a group.
Was used in Roman times to reduce a cohort by one tenth as a way of punishing the majority.


Mar 28, 2022

St. Kilda may want to investigate Hinckley's use of "maximum disappointment".

Surely that is a breach of copyright.


Mar 28, 2022

#The damage was two pies, three chips and a burger. This being the MCG catering, that adds up to just over $1 million in damages.#

Sometimes the jokes just write themselves.

Tarax Club

Mar 28, 2022

Given the covid crisis out west the AFL should issue a get out of jail card to WCE and Freo. To make up the Eagles numbers members of Fremantle penitentiary should be given day release. Dockers would also benefit with all that time on their hands, the footy skills would surely improve.

Isn’t it a little premature at the completion of round two, to declare
Carlton Collingwood and Hawthorn as serious contenders? Ok they’ve been given favourable barrier positions and jumped out well to be the collective frontrunners. But this is not a sprint of March hares to a lightning premiership. As Simon said at the commencement of this season. This is a “marathon”’. Strictly for stayers only folks.


Mar 29, 2022

Dustin Martin, Dion Prestia, Dylan Grimes and Jack Riewoldt AND Nick Vlaustin AND Kane Lambert. 6 of the starting 22 (all triple premiership players) and 3 key mids. I challenge any side in the comp to take that chunk out and remain competitive. But the Giants were missing Toby.


Mar 29, 2022

Jake Boweys father played for St Kilda, he's experienced enough disappointment for 2 people