Geelong favoured by captains to again make grand final
New Geelong captain Patrick Dangerfield has laughed off a brave contemporary who thinks the AFL reigning premiers will miss the finals.
In the annual survey of the league's captains, Brisbane were the only team to receive the maximum 17 votes from their rivals, when asked which teams other than their own will make the top eight.
The Cats and Richmond had 16 votes apiece.
Dangerfield laughed off the dissenting voice, stressing Geelong made a point of not taking too much notice of what others thought when they had a series of finals disappointments before last year's flag triumph.
"We try not to care too much about what others think," he said.
"If you only listen to that, you're chasing your tail.
"If you don't think it's possible, you're a chance to be found out.
"I don't know what they were smoking, but ... there are a few new captains, maybe one didn't fill out the survey properly."
Sydney and Melbourne polled 15 votes, followed by Fremantle (12) and Collingwood (11).
At the other end of the spectrum, no captains believe North Melbourne, West Coast, GWS or Essendon will make the finals, while Adelaide and St Kilda received just one vote.
When asked which other club will reach the grand final, eight captains nominated Geelong, while Melbourne and Brisbane received four votes, and Richmond and Sydney polled once.
Melbourne midfielder Clayton Oliver was rated by five captains as the likely Brownlow medallist with Brisbane's Lachie Neale and Fremantle's Andrew Brayshaw getting three votes.
Western Bulldogs star Marcus Bontempelli and Gold Coast co-captain Touk Miller received two votes while last year's medallist Patrick Cripps polled one vote, along with Christian Petracca and Sydney's Callum Mills.
Geelong's attacking ace Jeremy Cameron and Richmond spearhead Tom Lynch topped favouritism to lead the league's goalkicking with six votes each.
And Brisbane's highly rated newcomer Will Aschroft was the overwhelming favourite to claim the Rising Star award - he received eight votes, with the Bulldogs' Sam Darcy next-best with two.