What it means for the Bulldogs
Versatility is becoming an increasingly important quality for players to possess at AFL level.
That helps explain why the Western Bulldogs were so eager to secure the services of Jackson Trengove with a three-year contract offer on the first morning of the league’s free agency period.
The Dogs acted swiftly to pounce on the outgoing Port Adelaide utility, with an eye on shoring up their defensive and ruck stocks and add some experience to a side that’s just lost its two longest-serving players in Bob Murphy and Matthew Boyd.
Trengove became a ‘Mr Fixit’ in his last couple of seasons at the Power, plugging holes where required with his usual high-intensity workrate.
Called upon to ruck last year in the absence of the suspended Paddy Ryder and injured Matthew Lobbe, Trengove made an immediate impression. Having spent most of his career to that point as a key defender, Trengove appeared a natural in holding his own in the clearance battles against experienced ruckman – and offering plenty of follow-up work at ground level.
He supported Ryder this season and drifted forward to boot 17 goals from 19 appearances before falling out of favour late in the season.
Trengove is expected to spend plenty of time back in defence at the Dogs, who struggled at times in 2017 curtailing the influence of opposition tall forwards. The problem was evident in their most recent outing against Hawthorn in round 23, where a five-goal haul from Jarryd Roughead officially ended the club’s finals hopes.
Having Trengove’s 197cm, 97kg frame on hand to help outmuscle opposition spearheads will be key, but expect him to also bob up for some secondary ruck duties to help the likes of Jordan Roughead and Tom Campbell.
An additional bonus for the Dogs is Trengove’s durability, with the 26-year-old playing a minimum of 15 games each season since his debut in 2010.
What it means for the Power
Port would likely have rather kept the 153-gamer on their list as a back-up measure, but are considered no chance to match the offer to keep Trengove.
It means the Power lose one of their best clubmen, with Trengove praised for his voice in the playing group as one of the list’s most experienced heads.
But the shift is set to free up some salary cap space for some big-name additions over the trade period.
Former Brisbane skipper Tom Rockliff is the highest-profile name linked to the Power, pledging his intention to head to Alberton and bolster a midfield that already includes the likes of Ollie Wines and Travis Boak.
Restricted free agent Steven Motlop (Geelong) is also on the Power’s radar as the club eyes added pace across half-forward.