A first AFL premiership in Fremantle’s history will have to wait but Nat Fyfe is set to deliver silverware to the club on Monday night by winning the Brownlow Medal.
Fyfe is hot favourite to win the award after finishing runner-up to surprise winner Matthew Priddis last year.
The Docker has already collected the end-of-season awards from the Herald Sun, ABC and Fox Footy.
To many, Fyfe would be a deserving winner given his heroics in the Dockers’ preliminary final loss to Hawthorn.
The 23-year-old played with a broken leg, with subsequent scans showing he fractured his fibula in the first quarter.
Undeterred, Fyfe picked up an astonishing nine clearances and 16 contested possessions in an show of remarkable athleticism.
But if Fyfe is to claim the medal, he’ll have his early-season form to thank, with no voting from finals contributing to the award.
The incredibly-built West Australian backed up a 30-possession season opener with a three-goal 36-disposal effort against Geelong that had the competition watching.
The AFL’s own vote predictor suggests Fyfe will be sitting on 23 from a possible 27 votes after nine rounds.
Controversially, if there’s a reason Fyfe misses out, it could be through the actions of one of his chief Brownlow competitors.
Fyfe suffered a corked leg from Sam Mitchell in their round 14 meeting in Launceston and had a reduced output from there.
The Hawthorn star is again among the medal favourites, averaging more disposals than anyone else in 2015.
Priddis is the second favourite, having improved his output from his medal-winning year.
But he could find teammates hurt his polling levels, with Andrew Gaff, Nic Naitanui and Josh Kennedy all enjoying best-afield performances on the Eagles’ run towards an eventual spot in the grand final.
Midfielders Patrick Dangerfield, who won Adelaide’s best and fairest in his farewell season at the club, and Dan Hannebery, who pipped Fyfe to the AFL Coaches’ champion player award by a point, will also feature.
If there’s a bolt from the blue it could come from ruckman Todd Goldstein, who was rated a $1001 chance in March.
The 27-year-old ruckman, who won the Age’s Footballer of the Year poll from Gaff, set new records for hitouts during a breakout season.
He’ll have to defy recent history to take home the coveted prize, which has traditionally been won by midfielders.