St Kilda need goals. Well truth be told they need a lot of things right now. A disappointing loss to Adelaide by 49 points last Saturday has increased the media spotlight on the club after a fortnight of underwhelming performances.
Jake Carlisle is one of many players who has come under scrutiny in the last week with his demeanour and discipline heavily analysed during and after the clash with the Crows.
Earlier in the week Garry Lyon floated the idea of pushing Carlisle forward. Maybe a switch from defence to the forward line is an idea that should come into calculations for Alan Richardson.
While any move may put some extra defensive pressure on Nathan Brown in particular, the recruitment of Logan Austin from Port Adelaide who is currently in the 25 man squad for the game this week would potentially allow Carlisle to push forward.
Facing the critics
While pundits such as Danny Frawley defended Carlisle’s performance against the Crows last week, the same could not be said for Matthew Lloyd who was critical of the former Bomber on Footy Classified and Terry Wallace did not hold back on SEN radio.
“Jake Carlisle, I don’t even think he is a good player. At the moment, it is still about Jake. You only have to watch that game on the weekend to see. He was arguing with the umpires one minute and not concentrating what he is doing, giving away 50 metre penalties.”
For all the criticism levelled at the 26 year-old, he has taken the second most marks in the competition. And has been solid if not spectacular in the opening rounds.
Jake Carlisle is no stranger to the forward-line
One of the great strengths of Jake Carlisle is his flexibility to play all over the ground. While the 26 year-old has played primarily in defence he has shown in the past his ability to go forward, take a mark and have a scoreboard impact.
This is evidenced with a return of 60 career goals from 110 games. This includes a career high of eight against the Western Bulldogs in 2014.
Reversing the trend
The match this week with Geelong is a vital game for St Kilda with a challenging fixture to follow. For a team that has finals aspirations they cannot afford to fall too far behind other teams.
The last two weeks has seen a total of 12 goals kicked by the Saints. With marks inside 50 an issue and something has to change.
If no one else is going to take marks and kick goals then maybe there are worse ideas than giving Jake Carlisle a shot.