Melbourne’s problems up front have become clear, with the club clearly having three high-pressure players at the forward end.
The Demons dropped from third place in 2021 to dead last in 2022, according to Champion Data.
Statistics show that Sam Weidemann ranks worst in the forward pressure race, tied for second worst with teammate Ben Brown.
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Bailey Fritsch, who has been criticized for “barbecuing” his teammates in recent weeks, is ranked ninth.
“In (Max) Gawn, (Christian) Petracca and (Clayton) Oliver … and we’re talking about three of the top five players in the top 10,” Nick Riewoldt said on the couch.
“What it means is…we all know it’s hard to flip the switch and say, ‘We’re going to be right at the end of the day.’
“Every day, every session, every game you have to prepare like a grand final so when you’re down 19 points in the third quarter you’re used to playing until the last minute and you can win it.”
Fox Footy’s Gary Lyons was savage in his criticism of the Demon Attack finale.
“Their forward line is terrible. The level of pressure is the worst in the competition,” he said.
“Last year they were first in the competition (for half transition) and now they are eighth. From the 5th to the 11th turning points.
“All of a sudden you have this front line that doesn’t have any heat or pressure. This team is not going to score. They gave up 110 points (against the Dogs).
It was Melbourne’s biggest point since Round 19, 2019.
Jonathan Brown has lamented the lack of pressure from Melbourne with visions of “landing a 747” next to the Dogs.
“This is not indicative of a Premiership team,” he said.
“That pressure level, that was shocking.
“You can’t mess with form.”
The statistics show that despite Melbourne’s attacking woes, they lead the competition in time – sitting at 69%.
Geelong came second with 67 per cent, while Richmond – who finished outside the top eight – were third with 62 per cent.
“They’ve led other teams in the comp,” Lyons said.
“Getting the flags back is the hardest part.
“It’s gone now, the front line structure is not good, the front line pressure is weak.”
Melbourne have suffered four defeats when their opponents have been involved by six goals or more.
Against the Dogs, the Demons led by 27 points before losing by 10 points. Against the Magpies, the Demons took a 22-point lead and looked to run out 26-point losers.
The biggest change came against the Dockers as the Demons lost by 24 points to the Swans by 14 points. Melbourne led by 30 points before running out 38-point losers.
The Demons are still in second place, two points clear of fifth-placed Fremantle and one win over Sydney and Carlton in sixth and seventh.