Tim Taranto is just one of a handful of GIANTS who have changed since being drafted.
With the 2019 NAB AFL Draft just 19 days away, we’re turning back the clock to show off some of the baby-faced GIANTS we’ve selected in drafts gone by.
Stephen Coniglio – Now the GIANTS’ vice-captain, Coniglio joined the GIANTS with the second pick of the 2011 NAB AFL Draft from WAFL side Swan Districts. Although there’s now a lot more stubble on Coniglio’s chin, the midfielder still wears a similar hairstyle and boasts the same exciting skills that saw him rated as one of the nation’s most exciting young tallents.
Nick Haynes – Haynes has come a long way since the 2011 Draft. Drafted as a forward, he was a gangly teenager who had almost spent more time at the beach skimboarding in his teenage years than kicking a Sherrin. Since the draft, Haynes has transformed into one of the competition’s best defenders and has added some bulk to his formerly thin frame.
Lachie Whitfield – Although he may look a little more mature than he did in 2012, Lachie Whitfield hasn’t changed a whole lot. When he was selected with the first pick in the 2012 NAB AFL Draft, Whitfield was a highly-regarded outside mid with pace and elite disposal by foot. Fast-forward to 2019 and the now All-Australian and Kevin Sheedy Medallist is still an outstanding outside player with elite foot skills. The only difference is that he’s proven he can play off half-back.
Josh Kelly – If you thought Nick Haynes was the biggest transformation, think again. To call Josh Kelly babyfaced is an understatement. Then a cheerful 12 18-year-old, Kelly hasn’t stopped smiling since being selected with the second pick overall of the 2013 NAB AFL Draft. Then rated as the best midfielder in his draft year, Kelly – now an All-Australian and Sheedy Medallist – is now rated among the best midfielders in the AFL.
Jacob Hopper – The GIANTS Academy graduate joined the GIANTS with the seventh pick of the 2015 NAB AFL Draft in Adelaide. The fresh-faced country boy hasn’t changed much at all. Despite playing 67 games over the past four seasons, the 2016 Rising Star Nominee has barely aged since the first day he pulled on that orange and charcoal jumper on draft night.
Tim Taranto – It’s incredible to think that Taranto has played three years of AFL football already. Selected with pick two in the 2016 NAB AFL Draft, Taranto was then known more as a ball-winning half-forward who could play in the midfield. Now packing more muscle thanks to three full pre-seasons, some stubble that would give some of the best razors trouble and boasting a few more tattoos, Taranto has transformed into a midfield bull who claimed the 2019 Kevin Sheedy Medal.