Rookie Draft

The rookie draft is held after the PSD on the same day. It gives clubs an opportunity to add additional players (the majority who are speculative project-type players) outside the 38 man main (or senior) list. Rookie players aren’t eligible to play in AFL games unless they are elevated to the senior list (replacing a retiree, long term injured main listed player or as one of upto 2 ‘nominated’ rookies minus the number of veteran listed players – i.e. 0 veteran listers = 2 nominated rookies allowed, 1 veteran lister = 1 nominated rookie allowed, 2 veteran listers = 0 nominated rookies allowed).


Eligiible players:
> Any player eligible for the National draft aged between 18 to 22
> Any player aged over 22, eligible for the National draft, who haven’t played an AFL game

Ineligible players:
> Any player ineligible for the National Draft
> Any player aged over 22 who has played at least one AFL game

Brisbane and Sydney

To encourage local based players Brisbane and Sydney are allowed to recruit eligible players that have resided for at least 3 years in Queensland (Brisbane) or NSW/ACT (Sydney) before other clubs – this is done before the after the PSD and before the rookie draft commences.

Successful former Rookie listed players

International Rookies

As of 2008, clubs are permitted to sign up to 8 international rookies per year (a maxiumum total of 24 players at one time and payments do not count towards the salary cap). Players are able to remain rookies for 3 years instead of the usual 2.

Eligible players must be aged between 15 to 23 and can’t be Australian citizens (NOTE: Irish players don’t qualify as a result of the AFL’s relationship with the GAA – they must be signed to a club’s primary or rookie list as per a regular player).

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