2022 AFL Draft Preview: Hawthorn

WITH season proper and trade period done and dusted, AFL fans and staff alike now turn their attention towards the draft (November 28-30). The chaos has settled on player and pick swaps, and budding prospects have completed their combines, leaving a nervous wait until they learn their fate.

In the next of our club by club previews, we take a look at Hawthorn’s draft hand and offer insight into how the Hawks may utilise the picks at their possession. With a hefty haul heading into the draft, Sam Mitchell‘s rebuild is in full swing.

2022 FINISH: 13th

CURRENT PICKS: 6, 24, 41, 48, 50, 52, 63


POTENTIAL ACADEMY/FATHER-SON NOMINEES: Cooper Vickery, Josh Bennetts, Jerome Lawrence


At pick six, the Hawks’ selection somewhat pends on what Essendon and Gold Coast do, but they have put in a mountain of work into the range of prospects they have to choose from. With a group of midfielders to choose from, the likes of Tom Mitchell and Jaeger O’Meara can be covered along with the addition of Cooper Stephens.

Should Elijah Tsatas slip past Essendon, he would be hard to pass up. The Oakleigh Chargers midfielder puts up numbers similar to Mitchell and O’Meara, but as the speed and skill to hurt the opposition. Similarly, Mattaes Phillipou is in the Bombers’ mix but has serious upside as an athletic midfielder-forward. Hawthorn has shown great interest, having flown the 190cm South Australian over recently.

One player who the Hawks sought for yet another interview was Bailey Humphrey. He is the type of character club recruiters value highly, but his powerful attributes are just as promising. Fellow bolter Reuben Ginbey has similar versatility and hardness, but instead doubles as a defender.

While Essendon or Gold Coast could foil the Hawks’ plans, the brown and golds could just as easily do so to Geelong. Local product Jhye Clark has extensively been linked to the Cats, though he fits the mould of a player Sam Mitchell would likely value.

Offering consistent contested ball winning prowess and the ability to kick off both feet, he is also made of leadership material. The only factor working against him, is that he may not offer the points of difference the other four players do. Realistically, all of the above could land at Hawthorn, with pick six a key pivot point in the top 10.

Hawthorn has shown late interest in Jhye Clark | Image Credit: Rookie Me Central


The Hawks’ next selection comes in at pick 26, though it is set to move around as father-son bids land. Depending on whether a midfielder-forward is snapped up with their primary selection, the Hawks could look to add another in the likes of Coby Burgiel or Olli Hotton.

Looking outside the on-ball box, Jakob Ryan is a super versatile medium-tall with some first round interest, while Gippsland Power small forward Jacob Konstanty could also be there to snap up. Along similar lines, if Brayden George slides into the 20s he would be difficult to overlook.

Much of the Hawks’ late-draft dealings revolve around both what is available and whether Next Generation Academy (NGA) product Cooper Vickery gets past the 40-mark. He is more likely to slide than not, and would be a handy asset to package with NAB League teammates Burgiel and Konstanty earlier in the piece.

Overall, the Hawks should end up with four to five fresh faces in the National Draft, and may opt to list NGA talent Josh Bennetts as a Category B rookie. Father-son prospect Jerome Lawrence is a less likely candidate, but perhaps a rookie chance to consider.


– Which of the powerful midfielders will Hawthorn snap up with pick six?
– How will Hawthorn’s first pick impact their second?
– Will Cooper Vickery get past the 40-mark?

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