HomeFootballDons' Rutten hails AFL cult hero Draper

Dons’ Rutten hails AFL cult hero Draper

Ben Rutten will encourage Sam Draper’s natural flair and passion after Essendon’s cult figure produced an AFL goal-of-the-year contender in Sunday’s upset of Gold Coast.

Ruckman Draper grabbed the ball from a centre bounce, shared a give-and-go with a teammate and shrugged off two opponents as he galloped towards goal during the final quarter.

His dazzling finish on the outside of his right boot brought the house down as the highlight of the Bombers’ 48-point win at Marvel Stadium.

“It was fantastic,” Essendon coach Rutten said.

“I don’t want to discourage him at all from playing with some real flair and spirit.

‘That’s what he brings and his teammates feed off it, the crowd feed off it and it’s a real highlight of his game.

“He can do those things that a lot of guys can’t.”

Recruited via the 2017 rookie draft, Draper has played 38 senior games over the last three seasons and is still…


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