Jun 05, 2023


The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Twelve


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.


Melbourne (61) v Carlton (44)

Oh, this was awful. A game so bad it was like Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote it.

This was just turnover after turnover, as players missed teammates, missed tackles, missed shots at goal. There was more missing than a vegan meal.

While the focus was on Carlton with their recent (if you count several decades as recent) struggles, the Dees delivered a horror show of a performance.

They said Carlton made it scrappy, but when players are not under pressure and still miss targets by several suburbs, that’s not Carlton’s doing.

If they serve this up against the Pies next week, Collingwood will have a percentage-boosting win so big their percentage will have a four in front of it. 

The Dees were just lucky that they were playing Carlton. Harry McKay may have started kicking goals, but everyone else stopped.

When it comes to scoring, the Blues are impotent. Trust me, I know.

Paddy Dow must be furious. Imagine not being able to break into this Carlton side! You could have never played this sport and break into this Carlton side.


Port Adelaide (151) v Hawthorn (96)

For a time, this looked like it could have been a 200-point belting.

Parents were covering their kids’ eyes in the first half as the Power did unspeakable things to the Hawks.

When Kayo glitched for the 7000th time on the weekend during this game, I was relieved.

The Hawks, without James Sicily, were putting up the sort of fight that would make Bernard Tomic proud.

At halftime, Port were up by 82 points, the only highlight for the Hawks being Luke Breust kicking his 500th goal and the half ending.

The second half didn’t continue the trend of the first, the Power put on cruise control while the Hawks fought back somewhat, kicking eight of the last 10 goals of the game.

While the Hawks did fight back, that was really because the Power had decided they’d done enough in the first and had decided to just run out the second half.

To be honest, they strolled out the second half.

West Coast (57) v Collingwood (120)

Are you sitting down? Jordan De Goey did something stupid.

I know, I was as shocked as anyone.

With the Pies well in control early, De Goey decided taking out Elijah Hewett would be a good idea.

It was not a good idea.

It’s possible De Goey has had good ideas in his life. I’m unaware of any, but theoretically it is possible, but we do know he is great at bad ideas.

What Leonardo Di Vinci was too good ideas, De Goey is too bad ideas. A true genius.

West Coast were not thrilled with his act, and they responded with two of their best quarters in years, pushing the Pies right into the third quarter.

It made the game way more physical than it possibly would have been.

The injuries piled up on both sides. Collingwood lost Beau McCreery (foot), Will Hoskin-Elliott (ankle) and Ash Johnson (corked leg), while the Eagles added Shannon Hurn (hamstring) and Connor West (knee) to Hewett being off.

Now it would be a long bow to say these were all De Goey’s fault, but yeah, totally De Goey’s fault.

It took Nick Daicos to return things to normal programming.

He finished with 30 disposals and three goals, with two in the last quarter, as the Pies pulled away.

The difference was the Pies have a second, third, fourth and fifth gear. They booted nine of the last ten goals to win by 63 points in what had been a close game.

Western Bulldogs (75) v Geelong (97)

The Western Bulldogs are allergic to defeating the Cats.

The Cats have won 17 of the last 19 games, and even the Bulldogs interesting tactic of not kicking any goals in the last quarter didn’t work.

And the Bulldogs form has been so much better than the Cats, and Geelong was coming off three losses in a row.

But none of that mattered, as the Cats just keep finding a way.

A big part of that way was Tom Stewart, who was the rock countless Bulldogs waves crashed upon.

Sure, the Bulldogs could have tried to kick the ball where Stewart wasn’t, but where’s the fun in that? Better to kick it to him every time.

The disappointing thing for the Dogs, was they were just a goal down at three-quarter time. Poor goalkicking was the one thing stopping them leading.

So to then have Geelong kick the final six goals and not kick one yourselves is a capitulation that would have had the Italian Army in World War Two shaking their heads.

Gold Coast (112) v Adelaide (87)

I made a mistake last week in my Highly Unhelpful Guide and didn’t upload the preview to this game.

What’s worse, is I had written it, so my work was wasted. And it was a good preview too if you don’t mind me saying.

Here’s a snippet: There is no surer thing than Adelaide winning in Darwin. I would bet one of my houses on it. And not just any house, one of the good ones.

If there is one thing we can all agree on, it’s that I am an idiot.

The Crows were up by 35 points in the second quarter, but this was the high-water mark for them, as the Suns grabbed the momentum.

Matt Rowell was a huge reason why, as he started destroying the Crows in close. It’s a wonder more players don’t eat grass before the game, it’s obviously working.

I could see every player soon eating grass before a game like a herd of cows.

Add to Rowell, you had five goals from Jack Lukosius, Noah Anderson being extra damaging and Ben Long putting Izak Rankine in his pocket.

It all added up to the Suns living up to their potential.

The Crows also lost Tom Doedee to a knee injury early making this a costly trip.

It keeps the Crows in the ‘sort of OK’ zone. 


Greater Western Sydney (104) v Richmond (110)

I didn’t have a lot of hope for the two Sunday games, but to answer Russell Crowe, I was entertained.

This one had a lot of rivalry, after all these two almost played each other in a Grand Final.

Add to that the fact the Tiger raided the Giants in the off-season and this was a lot more interesting than a normal bottom half of the ladder clash.

Richmond were helped by Jack Riewoldt booting five, in a reminder that he hasn’t yet retired, and Tim Taranto lifting against his old team.

Taranto was booed by the crowd, and as you can imagine, it was deafening at Giants Stadium.

The Giants responded to the Tigers by hitting the post more than was really necessary. This proved to be a costly approach later on.

As the game went on, no one could break free, mainly due to their own skill errors.

The final two minutes, with the score tied, were pure chaos as both sides tried and failed to seal the game.

That was until 24 seconds remaining when the weight of errors saw the ball fall to Marlion Pickett, who gathered the ball and slotted a goal.

It wasn’t pretty, but it was exciting. ‘Pretty, not exciting’ is the motto on my family’s coat of arms.

Essendon (105) v North Melbourne (99)

This shouldn’t have been anywhere near as good as it was.

The Kangaroos were down by 20 points at quarter time and had lost Jy Simpkin and Hugh Greenwood to concussion before halftime.

This should have equalled an easy win for the Bombers, but the Bombers rarely do easy, preferring to torment their fans.

Instead, North lifted to make this one of the most exciting games of the year, with the lead changing constantly in the fourth quarter.

The Kangaroos young midfield lifted with Will Phillips, Bailey Scott and Harry Sheezel impressing, and George Wardlaw’s attack on the ball was something to see.

The AFL’s new face of its ‘Respect for Women’ campaign, Tarryn Thomas, was also impressive.

In defence, Ben McKay was as good at stopping goals as his brother has been recently, while Cameron Zurhaar kicked four goals up forward.

In the dying moments, it was Nic Martin who remained as calm when all around him were losing their heads, he kicked, marked and headed his team over the line.

In the end, it was Massimo D'Ambrosio who kicked the winning goal.

It’s a saying as old as time, ‘Never leave Massimo D'Ambrosio unmarked in the forward fifty.’

Unfortunately, North forgot this ancient teaching.

You can help support me in producing this ridiculous nonsense I churn out on a regular basis. Find out more here: https://titusoreily.com/support-titus




Jun 05, 2023

"Poor goalkicking was the one thing stopping the Bulldogs leading."

Exactamundo! Some of them kicked for goal like they'd just downed three shots of tequila.

And the Bombers just squeaking past NM like that must raise some serious questions about Essendon's defence. You just have to hope for Essendon's sake that the people high up in the club7s hierarchy have already asked these questions by now.


Jun 05, 2023

I love the reference to Bernard Tomic and still miss his extreme levels of indifference!


Jun 05, 2023

Thankfully the Pies remembered that they are #1 and West Coast are #18. Bit of a worry that it took 3.5 quarters to come to that conclusion. On the plus side Jordy will have a nice mid-season break to freshen up for a finals run. Oh, and another 3 votes for Nicky D. Just another week really.

The g train

Jun 05, 2023

“What Leonardo Di Vinci was too good ideas, De Goey is too bad ideas. A true genius”. Most don’t realise that to come up with a really, really, really bad idea is just as hard as coming up with a really, really, really good one. That’s why I don’t think you’re an Idiot, Titus. An idiot would never recognise this.

Success follows Stewie Dewie. Played critical roles in both Central Districts and Port Power’s first premierships; and a unlikely hero in a Hawthorn GF victory. He’ll guide The Suns to an unlikely inaugural premiership before 2025. Bet all your houses on that, Titus. Every last one of them.


Jun 05, 2023

Under the GWS Richmond game, did you mean "Not pretty or exciting"?


Jun 05, 2023

Titus. You’re a walking billboard for Sportsbet.

Mr D

Jun 05, 2023

Late breaking news: Jordan De Goey has booked three weeks vacation in Las Vegas starting this week, with an option to extend it to five weeks.

Gary G

Jun 05, 2023

"Ben McKay was as good at stopping goals as his brother has been recently"
Absolute gold!


Jun 05, 2023

“Pretty - not exciting”. Your family motto. I have worked out why your father won’t let you call him dad. Any why your mother ….. Nah let’s not go there.

Mac Hawk

Jun 05, 2023

Yeahh...Bernard Tomic..was a clever reference point to the Hawk's first half. But you could also have mentioned your club's malicious trading of Sam Frost to us back in the day when Clarko's arrogance thought his every choice would turn to gold.

Merlin's Mother

Jun 05, 2023

Oh Titus - pull your head in mate!! How can you say "the Dees delivered a horror show of a performance"? A win is a win is a win - that starts with W (for Wonderful) Titus. I am beginning to think you have joined the rat pack of AFL media commentators who can only dish out vitriol - even about their own squad. What ever happened to Joi de Vivre folks, surely we are following this blog/pod what ever and any other AFL media outlet because we actually like the game. It's time for some folks to have a good hard look at themselves. Stop bagging the Blue Baggers and stop bagging our squad.

I could be whingeing big time because my TV stopped receiving a signal half an hour before our (rarely televised) Friday night game - but did I curse the God's of Footy - NO brother!! I got my phone out and tuned in to one of several radio broadcasts we receive up here in Northern NSW. That said I made the mistake of tuning into ABC which had Mick Malthouse leading the rat pack - but thankfully there were other choices. SEN won me and though it's not the same as watching the game live and free to air on 7NotYourMate - at least I knew what was happening. Fair dinkum - get a life folks!!!


Jun 05, 2023

I'm starting to suspect the crows of having a 25 year hangover


Jun 05, 2023

Titus - Carlton are not playing Collingwood next week. Unless you prefer American English. Always thought you were a MAGA Man!

Andrew Furze

Jun 05, 2023

Titus, you saying nice things about North is deeply unsettling, like watching Shane Crawford appear onstage in a musical. If Caroline Wilson praises north this week look out for four horsemen in Collingwood jumpers.

Running Dog

Jun 06, 2023

Titus, I realise Andrew Lloyd Webber is a very Melbourney, cheese-eating kind of name, as evidenced by the greedy use of three, but if missed teammates, missed tackles, missed shots, and more missing than a vegan meal featured in a musical it would be... Miss Saigon. That wasn't one of ALW's, although Claude-Michel Schönberg probably ate his share of camembert before surrendering. Speaking of missing and the Bulldogs' inaccuracy, I can't help focussing on Naughton's misses. But she's pretty hot.

Con Cushion

Jun 06, 2023

Turn It Up Titus ... we'll be the judges' about what's a good preview and what's not! Con.


Jun 06, 2023

De Goey is to bad ideas . Seems like a perfect fit as an AFL director .

Uninteresting Guy

Jun 06, 2023

One thing about Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals is that they all sound exactly the same. Melbourne has the same problem - game plan is same old same old. It worked in 2021 but the opposition have figured it out.


Jun 06, 2023

Never realised you were the Muppet yelling 'kick it long' at the footy. A lot to like about the Melbourne game. The defence has basically found it's structure and with Salem now back with his inside step through traffic, it's Collingwood going to be getting a witches trial next week.


Jun 07, 2023

I thought the modern day Salem witch trial would be practicing clearances with witches hats. If the hats win he's in the Magoos.


Jun 08, 2023

I just read the works Will Hoskin-Elliott . I now know who the commentators are referring to when I hear Oskenalliat. Thank you.