Leagues: AFL U18 Championships, Coates Talent League Boys
+ Stoppage craft
Now a back-to-back premiership player at Coates Talent League level, earning best afield honours in this season's flag as captain, Will Brown could not have done much more to prove himself. He did most of his work this season as a midfielder, before switching back to his bottom-aged role in the forward line come finals time. Brown’s size is one of the first things that makes him jump off the page. At 195cm he’s a smooth mover through the midfield and capable of being a target up forward, where his work rate and ability overhead make him a valuable marking option.
Brown cuts an imposing figure when attending stoppages, winning five clearances in his only full game as a midfielder in the National Championships, not solely relying on his size to bully opponents and proving particularly dangerous when paired with a strong tap ruckman. In the way of improvements, Brown he can tend to loop or hack his kicks when playing through the midfield, sometimes putting his targets under pressure as they have to either wait under the footy or scoop it off the deck. He could also look to improve his speed, particularly his first few steps, to allow him to compete more consistently in the midfield.
Clubs will value Brown's leadership qualities having skippered both the Dragons and Vic Metro squads. He graduated from high school last year and has been juggling football with university studies, getting by with a good head on his shoulders. Despite lower numbers, the 18-year-old perhaps regained some of the steam he had as a bottom-ager upon being moved forward again in 2023, so that may be his best position in future. A late selection or rookie spot seems like his best chance in this year's intake - he still has a lot to offer.
DRAFT RANGE: Late
AFL U18 Championships