AFL Draft Rewind: 2005

This week we’re getting around the 2020 AFL National Draft by looking back at the top 10 picks from then – going back 25 years, 20 years, 15 years, 10 years and five years.

Click here for 25 years – 1995

Click here for 20 years – 2000

From club captains, multiple premiership players, a Brownlow medalist, 300+ game players – the 2005 AFL National Draft was a deep pool of talent.

From Marc Murphy at pick number 1 to Matthew Stokes at 61, the 2005 National Draft delivered plenty and a fair few of those picked up back then are still dominating today.

We take a look at the top 10 picks from the 2005 National Draft and how those selections fared for their respective clubs.

PICK 1 (Carlton) – Marc Murphy
FROM: Oakleigh Chargers
Games Played for Club: 285* (*still playing)

The son of Fitzroy great John Murphy, Marc could have been taken up the offer to go father-son with the Brisbane Lions but declined as he wanted to stay home in Melbourne.

Carlton took him at pick 1 in the 2005 National Draft and 285 games later along with a stint as Blues skipper from 2013-15, two-time best and fairest, AFLCA Player of the Year and a favourite son at Princes Park – Murphy is very much the Blue-chip investment a number one draft pick brings.

PICK 2 (Collingwood) – Dale Thomas
FROM: Gippsland Power
Games Played for Club: 157

Thomas being taken at number two in the 2005 National Draft was considered a surprise at the time, but the man known as “Daisy” very much proved his worth.

He took the centre stage immediately in his first game against Adelaide in Round 1 2006, kicking two early goals and even a contender for mark of the year and his performance in the 2006 ANZAC day clash quickly drew the attention of the football world.

In his eight seasons at Collingwood, he was an exciting forward that captured the imagination of the Magpie faithful known for spectacular play and his flowing blond hair.

Thomas would head to Carlton, under his old Magpie coach Mick Malthouse in 2014 playing a further 101 games.

He is the only player to reach 100+ games for both Collingwood and Carlton along with being an All Australian, 2010 premiership player and played over 258 games from 2006-2019.

PICK 3 (Hawthorn) – Xavier Ellis
FROM: Gippsland Power
Games Played for Club: 86

Taken by Hawthorn with their first selection in this draft, Ellis spent most of the first year of his career focusing on completing year 12 and managed to play footy for his school Melbourne Grammar and the VFL’s Box Hill Hawks.

Xavier Ellis made his debut in Round 1, 2007 against the Brisbane Lions and was named Hawthorn’s best first year player of that year.

In the Hawks 2008 premiership winning season, Ellis played 23 games – including the Grand Final where he gained 28 disposals and was amongst Hawthorn’s best in their upset win against the Cats.

He would play in two more Grand Finals- both losing.

Hampered by injury from 2009-13, Ellis signed with West Coast as unrestricted free agent. He would play the majority of his two seasons at the Eagles including the 2015 Grand Final against his old side the Hawks.

In 2016, Ellis announced his retirement via Instagram after 120 AFL Games – 85 with the Hawks, 34 at West Coast.

PICK 4 (Carlton) – Josh Kennedy
FROM: East Fremantle
Games Played for Club: 22

Carlton’s number 4 pick in the 2005 draft was short.

Coming across as a promising future key-position forward, Kennedy struggled for ground time when playing at AFL level and played the majority of his football at Carlton’s VFL affiliate – Northern Bullants.

The Blues would sign him for a further two years, however, during the off-season he would be a sweetner for Carlton gaining the services of Chris Judd and headed off to the West Coast Eagles.

Since then he would go on to be a premiership player, x3 All-Australian, x2 Coleman Medalist and the all-time leading goalkicker for the Eagles.

PICK 5 (Collingwood) – Scott Pendlebury
FROM: Gippsland Power
Games Played for Club: 316* (*Still playing)

The Magpies took some kid from Sale who had a Basketball background at pick 5 and ended up with a legend of the club.

When Pendelbury was drafted his U18 coach Paul Hudson described him as “the Mark Waugh of footy, because he’s got a lot of time, even though he isn’t quick.”

One could argue Collingwood got the most out of their number 5 pick at the ’05 draft in the 2010 Grand Final replay when he tore up St.Kilda and won the Norm Smith Medal.

Pendelbury would become a x6 All-Australian, x3 ANZAC Day Medalist, x5 Copeland Trophy winner, 2010 premiership player and broke the Collingwood all-time games record during season 2020.

PICK 6 (Hawthorn) – Beau Dowler
FROM: Oakleigh Chargers
Games Played for Club: 16

Dowler was selected with the 6th pick in this draft by Hawthorn, despite having been in a car accident in October of that year resulting in a fractured pelvis.

That injury would see Dowler miss the majority of the 2006 season, managing to scrape a couple of games towards the end of the year.

He would play his first match in Round 17, 2007 for the Hawks but struggled to get a regular spot in the team.

In season 2010, he failed to play a senior game and was delisted at the end of the year after 16 career matches.

PICK 7 (Essendon) – Paddy Ryder
FROM: East Fremantle
Games Played for Club: 170

Essendon took in Paddy Ryder with their first selection at the 2005 draft where he would make a memorable debut in the opening round of the ’06 season against Sydney.

It would be the Bombers only win for the first 16 rounds of that season and the only win a young Paddy Ryder would play in his debut year.

Paddy Ryder would develop into one of Essendon’s most vital and talented players for a number of years and won the ANZAC day medal in the memorable 2009 clash against the Magpies.

After 170 games at the Bombers, he went to Port Adelaide at the beginning of the 2015 season and after having to serve suspension in the aftermath of the Dons drug saga came back in 2017 becoming one of the AFL’s best ruckman for which he was named All-Australian.

Now at his third club, St Kilda, as a veteran Paddy Ryder continues to be amongst the AFL’s elite.

PICK 8 (Richmond) – Jarrad Oakley-Nicholls
FROM: East Perth
Games Played for Club: 13

Richmond took the WA youngster with pick 8 at the 2005 draft in which he would make his debut in the second-ever Dreamtime game against Essendon.

Many Richmond fans recall him kicking a game-sealing point on the run in the dying stages of the match.

Oakley-Nicholls had fitness issues and never completed a pre-season, after only 13 games in four years at Tigerland he was delisted.

The West Coast Eagles took him as a rookie in 2010, but he struggled with a groin injury and was delisted at the end of the 2011 season.

PICK 9 (Brisbane) – Mitch Clark
FROM: East Fremantle
Games Played for Club: 106

Early on in his career, Mitch Clark showed plenty of talent and promise but was significantly hampered by injury problems.

Season 2009 would be a breakthrough for Clark as a Lion, playing in every single match that season, including two finals developing a reputation as one of the elite ruckman of the AFL.

He would become a Demon from 2012-14 and was one of Melbourne’s stars in the first half of his first season in the red and blue before injuring his foot in Round 13.

In the early part of the 2014 season, Clark announced his retirement from football battling clinical depression and personal issues.

Clark played for Geelong in 2015-16, adding a further 9 games to his career total.

PICK 10 (Fremantle) – Marcus Drum
FROM: Murray Bushrangers
Games Played for Club: 22

The nephew of former Freo coach Damien, Marcus Draum managed 22 games for the Dockers over four seasons.

He would not make his debut until Round 16 of the 2007 season – kicking four goals on debut.

Struggling to get a regular game for the Dockers, he was traded to Geelong pick 49 at the end of the 2009 season.

With constant injury problems, Drum only managed a handful of matches for the Geelong VFL team before retiring in the middle of 2011.

Tips, recommendations and commentary are for entertainment only. We provide no warranty about accuracy or completeness. You should make your own assessment before placing a bet.