Nicholas Madden

height: 204cm

weight: 112kg

D.O.B: 17-05-2004

Leagues: AFL U18 Championships, Coates Talent League Boys

  • Snapshot
  • Analysis
  • Summary

SNAPSHOT: “A physically imposing ruck with ample craft who plays within his limits, but can also hit the scoreboard.”

There are few more physically developed draft prospects than Nick Madden, a ruck out of the GWS Giants Academy. Hailing from Osborne in the Riverina region, the 18-year-old has already cracked senior footy at local level, and even tested himself against AFL opposition across two VFL games.

In terms of pathway progression, Madden turned out four times for the Giants Academy along a 1-3 NAB League run, before linking up with the Allies. He made his presence felt throughout a full national carnival, throwing his hat in the ring as a strong and key position prospect with plenty of improvement left.


+ Contested work
+ Follow-up
+ Ruck craft
+ Size
+ Strength


- Speed
- Versatility

Madden's game mostly revolves around his ability to impose himself at the ruck contest, setting somewhat of a tone for his team at the source. Particularly against those in his age bracket, the 18-year-old is near-impossible to match physically and would likely have made a few opponents think twice when fighting for possession.

The bigman averaged 24.8 hitouts in the NAB League and 16 during the National Championships, while also finding a groove for 27 in his second and final VFL outing. Hardly wavering in that department from game to game, he has proven to be a reliable ruck who simply gets his hand to the ball.

Away from the contest, Madden holds his own but plays within his limits. He doesn't mind getting his hands dirty on the follow-up and works into to the right spots around the ground. In particular, he stations well behind the ball when his side attacks and can help lock it in with aerial contests.

Handballing is usually Madden's MO, though he could certainly become more expansive by foot. His kick efficiency in Allies colours sat at 33 per cent, even if he only went by foot 21 per cent of the time. Part of that is where he finds the ball and his contested acumen, with many kicks being clearances and evened out by the neatness of his hands.

In the way of further improvement, athleticism is arguably the key area for Madden to grow. He clocked up a 3.28-second 20m sprint time at the National Combine, which is indicative of the way he plays. His strengths lie on the inside, but building that running power will allow him to become more impactful and versatile.

Speaking of the latter, Madden's forward craft promises to be another string to his bow. Should he become a more prominent leader at the ball, he would be difficult to combat aerially. Still, he booted 11 goals in 10 senior outings for Osborne, and a pair in two of his four NAB League caps this year. It's more a matter of enhancing that ability.

DRAFT RANGE: Late/Rookie


Madden has somewhat of a comfort heading into the draft with his Northern Academy alignment, though there are certainly no guarantees. On paper, he is a physically ready tall with improvement to be made both athletically and away from the ruck contests, but he has enough competitiveness to suggest he will continue to make strides. A rookie chance could allow him to do so, particularly at the Giants.

Contested work
Ruck craft
Second efforts

AFL U18 Championships


Coates Talent League Boys

2021GIANTS Academy151732500447081235.05.710.71.715.71.30.757
2022GIANTS Academy2332551600799026545.
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