Jul 26, 2021


The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Nineteen


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.


Port Adelaide (97) v Collingwood (69)

Travis Boak won the battle against Collingwood, which isn’t hard, and seems to be winning the battle against time, which is. 

In his 300th game, Boak who seems to get better with age, had 30 disposals and seven clearances.

Port needed his performance too, going from 32-points in front to just nine in the fourth quarter, as the Pies, fuelled by Port’s crimes against fashion, got back into the game.

This was especially impressive given Scott Pendlebury went off with a broken leg that will end his season.

It certainly didn’t help when you replace one of the best midfielders ever with Mason Cox.

For Pies supporters, it was further evidence that just when you think things can’t get any worse, they do.

Power fans would have been relieved that despite coughing up a big lead, when it got close, Port found another gear and won easily in the end.


Carlton (77) v North Melbourne (116)

North has improved more in the last two months than Carlton has in the last two decades.

The Kangaroos started the year looking like one of the worst teams to ever participate in an AFL season but have since improved in every way measurable.

David Noble said he was desperate not to finish bottom of the ladder, and it shows in this team, they are not playing out the season waiting for the number one pick to fall in their lap.

Could this ‘attempting to win’ be a new and exciting strategy for the bottom teams?

It’s something the Blues could try, but instead, their players are playing the Carlton way, which is ensuring their coach gets sacked at the end of the year.

It’s hard to convey how lethargic the Blues players were, but let’s just say, some of us who sat on the couch watching the Olympics all weekend burnt off more calories.

Brisbane (120) v Gold Coast (71)

Brave of the Olympics to go up against the Q Clash. And congratulations to Brisbane for getting the Olympics in 2032.

It’s timed beautifully, with Sydney just coming out of their current lockdown by then, Victoria coming out of their 200th lockdown, and Western Australia able to compete as their own country after seceding.

At halftime the Lions were 27 points down and after losing to St Kilda and Richmond it seemed they were on their way to a third consecutive loss.

They did have one thing in their favour though, a monopoly on the ball. The Suns barely touched it, and over the game, this became a real problem.

Getting the football is kind of a big deal.

Joe Daniher was doing Joe Daniher things up forward, which involves doing the basics badly and the impossible easily.

West Coast (94) v St Kilda (86)

After turning in some of the worst performances of the season, the Eagles have steadied somewhat.

Not that they were amazing, they’ve just stopped turning in performances that look like a bunch of people being forced to perform a task against their will.

Against St Kilda, they did just enough, which was important against the Saints who are trying to make an improbable late run for the finals.

It wasn’t all bad news for the Saints, Max King booted six and marked everything, giving Saints fans a glimpse of a better future.

King struggled earlier in the season but has improved across the year, which is why you keep trying and don’t just give up and crawl into a ball to sob.

That’s what I keep telling myself during lockdown.

King now seems to have confidence, which I’m told helps a lot.

Melbourne (65) v Western Bulldogs (85)

Simon Goodwin says he isn't concerned by the Demons' scoring problems, which makes one of us.

Against a very classy Bulldogs side, the Dees struggled to get good scoring opportunities, only to butcher the few they got.

Goodwin said, “"We're certainly not going to jump at shadows," which is not a very Melbourne thing to say.

In contrast, the Bulldogs took their chances, helped by the fact Marcus Bontempelli and Caleb Daniel seemed to be left free at stoppages, which is less a strategy and more complete madness.

Cody Weightman took one of the marks of the year, over Max Gawn, who positions himself so well, that players just know they can get near him and there’s a good chance for a big grab.

There was a lot of talk about the 11 to 25 free kick count, but Melbourne had their chances, and a lot of the time these frees are occurring because the Dees midfield isn’t getting their hands on the ball first.

Blaming the umpires is an excuse that gets you nowhere.

Adelaide (102) v Hawthorn (83)

There’s been a lot of talk about breakdancing being added to the Olympics in 2024, but it’s not as strange as it sounds.

From 1912 to 1948 there was an art component as part of every Olympics.

They were grouped into five broad categories: architecture, literature, music, painting, and sculpture.

Events included literature, dramatic works, lyric and speculative works, drawings and watercolours, statues (problematic these days), compositions for orchestra, engravings and etchings.

By far my favourite event was town planning. I’d love to see it back.

Reflecting our governments current level of interest in the industry, Australia never won a medal in the art category.

I know this isn’t a review of Adelaide-Hawthorn and you’re welcome.


Sydney (98) v Fremantle (58)

A bad day for the Dockers, with Nat Fyfe going out with a shoulder injury and Luke Ryan headbutting Buddy’s elbow for some reason.

Given it was David Mundy’s 350th game, a rare active AFL footballer who almost qualifies for the Pfizer vaccine, the Dockers were disappointing.

The Swans, however, were in excellent form, and luckily Buddy’s elbow seems to have escaped injury.

Isaac Heeney was everywhere, finishing with five goals, and taking a mark that saw him soar so high you’d think he was a billionaire.

Sydney must be the team you’d least like to come up against early in the finals.

They have so much young talent, meaning they can have their highs and lows, but those highs are higher than an Australian equestrian rider.

Things are a bit more difficult for Freo now in terms of finals, with Nat Fyfe possibly out.

That said, from 7th to 12th it seems no team is yet capable of putting a string of wins together. It’s like a Bradbury, except everyone has fallen over.

Geelong (95) v Richmond (57)

I pity Tigers fans. All they have is three premierships since 2017 to console themselves when watching a season like this.

It must be tough.

Still, watching your team get pummelled by Geelong is never fun, trust me, I’ve got some experience in this area.

It’s not that surprising the Tigers have fallen off the pace so quickly. Playing all those extra finals and maintaining those insanely high standards must wear you down.

It’s why I set a very low standard, it’s easy to maintain over a long period of time.

Geelong’s only worry was an injury to Joel Selwood, who is now in the hands of their medical staff. I expect them to clear him for next week because they are Geelong’s medical staff.

Essendon (53) v Greater Western Sydney (66)

Well, that was disappointing for Essendon supporters. With finals on the line and Toby Greene out, this was a game you’d have liked to see things come together. 

Instead, the Giants, down by 16 points at half-time, produced a four-goal to none third term. That’s not ideal.

Lachie Whitfield proved to be a big difference, he has the ability to make good decisions, the rarest trait in a footballer.

The Giants were just more astute throughout the game. Tagging Darcy Parish worked a lot better than it should, he was kept to just 15 disposals, about 300 less than he usually gets and no one else picked up the slack.

Brett Rutten said not making finals wasn’t a big deal as they wouldn’t get very far playing as they have been recently.

If there’s one thing Essendon fans have not had to worry about for some time, it’s what happens in finals.

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



Across the Face

Jul 26, 2021

"...Western Australia able to compete as their own country after succeeding."

Succeeding at seceding, Titus? Succeeding at seceding?

Keith Martine

Jul 26, 2021

Thank you Titus. As ever, a good read. I am interested in intercept marks, which seems to be a stat. My idea of an intercept mark is that someone out marks the opposition as they go forward. There should be another category where a player under miniscule pressure kicks to an unmarked opposition player. And the quality of some of those deliveries is very high! Would a player who did this more than kicking to his own players be regarded as a minus?


Jul 26, 2021

You’ve raised the bar (not the high jump one) with Adelaide v Hawthorn review.
Your Welcome.


Jul 26, 2021

Loved your review of the Adelaide/Carlton game, Titus. As usual, it was spot on.


Jul 26, 2021

That darkness that us Dees fans are so used to is almost upon us.


Jul 26, 2021

Titus, us Richmond fans know all about thrashings at the hands of Geelong - 157 points in round 6 2007 is etched into my mind. I stayed until the bitter end that day. Unfortunately we feature twice in their top five highest scores ever!


Jul 26, 2021

Well done Titmus, insightful and wise as ever.

I think Keith Martine above refers to the Clanger, the exponent of which is a Clang; and the recipient, the rarely named Clangee, I think rarely named mainly because people insist on using a soft g in such things leading people to say "Didn't Lauryn Hill sing for them?"

Big Olly

Jul 26, 2021

As an Adelaide fan, this week’s reaction left me bitterly disappointed.

You see, we the happy denizens of Adelaide have a proud history of town planning, starting with Colonel William Light and I’m sure we could have contributed to the Australian Olympic effort in that regard.



Jul 26, 2021

Thanks appreciate the thinking mans view
An even better summary than the after match in rooms from Tommy
You dun good as Captain Blood would say


Jul 26, 2021

Who's Brett Rutten?


Jul 26, 2021

Titus, Can you do an Olympic themed Unhelpful Guide this Friday please.


Jul 26, 2021

KNDOLE Was that the day Scotty Turner was towelled up by Abblett to the tune of 13 goals? Had to feel sorry for Scotty, a good player in a very, very bad team.

acid raisons

Jul 26, 2021

Praise where praise is due the bulldogs were finally able to deliver the goods in the home and away rounds. In a points decision against the bloodied but still deefiant dees. Given recent performances the Demon's conversion in front of goal still has a way to go. With the Olympics out of synch, the cold winter weather made their forwards perform like downhill skiers. Goody might do well to reprise 'Cool Runnings' at training for Bob and Tom. And reflect on this early Fleetwood Mac gem, 'What can you say? There isn't much to tell, I'm going downhill, but I blame myself, I've been jumping at shadows.' The umpires clearly missed the flight for the earlier game in Perth.


Jul 26, 2021

"By far my favourite event was town planning. I’d love to see it back." Your best comment ever Titus...
I'm still chuckling away, as i thumb through my Le Corbusier and Piloti textbooks from TP graduate days hoping to get into the 2024 Olympics Squad.

Why did my beloved Dockers suddenly get all scared of ''the corridor" halfway thru the second quarter?


Jul 26, 2021

Big fella..once again a very good report from the round of footy.although I do think you may have spent a little too long on reporting about the crow v hawks game. Now back to the main game of the round THE DEES have been bagged by our own supporters for way too long.everyone forgets we came within 4 points in the last qtr only to be thwarted once again by the half wits in charge of the all important whistle. That being said it is an up and down season for THE DEES BUCKLE UP AND ENJOY THE RIDE....GO DEES.

The g train

Jul 26, 2021

A ripper analysis Titus—as always. I’ve come to the right place.

“Joe Daniher was doing Joe Daniher things up forward, which involves doing the basics badly and the impossible easily”. Joe Daniher defies even Salvador Dali. “It is either easy or impossible”, wrote the eccentric genius.


Jul 26, 2021

AJ: If you see that the all too oft darkness is almost upon you, then the darkness is upon you.


Jul 26, 2021

Across The Face what the hell you on about, come on man. Titus got it right you quoted him wrong come on man you a donkey or what.

Across the Face

Jul 26, 2021

Only Titus and I know the truth behind that claim, Monkey.


Jul 27, 2021

Ah Stones, no. You were thwarted by 5 minutes of Bont brilliance. And all those balls kicked out on the full are included in the free kicks column.


Jul 29, 2021

Titus. What has happened to the Thoroughly Unhelpful Guide?

Reading just one of your second rate rants a week is not good enough. Anything that takes the place of Olympics or Covid on the internet is essential to our mental wellness. ( Whatever "Wellness" means).

Jacqui Parry

Jul 30, 2021

Titus- so glad you managed to get out of gaol without having to make a call on my hard-earned. Well done!

RE: Clangers - let’s get this sorted!!!

A Clanger is delivered to the Clangee by the Clangor - surely ?

A Clang is the sound made by the Clangor as they sink the slipper into the wrong side of the the ball.

A Clinger is not necessarily a Clanger though they may be.

On receipt of the Clanger - the Clangee is said to have Clunked it.

Nuff said.

P.S. can you comprehend for just a moment just how hard it was to write the above with bloody autocomplete constantly getting in the bloody way!! %^*+^%#{}¥€