Senior Coach Justin Longmuir will keep his plans with Nat Fyfe close to his chest after the two-time Brownlow Medallist played mostly forward in Fremantle’s eight-point win against Port Adelaide on Sunday at Optus Stadium.
Fyfe had nine contested possessions from his 21 disposals against the Power and kicked a goal with just the one clearance as he spent more time away from the stoppages.
In his post-match media conference, Longmuir said he felt that too much blame is placed on Fyfe when Fremantle don’t perform well.
“We all want him back to his best. I thought he took a good step forward today and he was instrumental when we were playing our best footy,” Longmuir said.
“I don’t think last week (the loss) was because he was in the midfield. Last week we had a lot of players down, all over the ground and we weren’t as connected as we needed to be at stoppage.
“I just feel like a lot of the questions you get asked, he holds a lot of the blame, when he’s just one of 18 guys on the field.”
Longmuir said the captain would continue to play a variety of roles this season but added he wouldn’t go into detail about those plans.
“We will play it (his role) by ear. I’m not going to sit here and give the opposition a head start on what we’re doing with Nathan Fyfe every week.
“It’s supposed to be a secret some of this stuff. We’re supposed to be able to go into a game and catch the opposition off but I just get asked 15 questions a week on where Fyfe’s going to start, his mid-forward split.
“I don’t get asked about the other guys in the squad week in and week out, their game time and their midfield forward split and when his rotations are and all that sort of thing.”
Matt Taberner was Fremantle’s only injury casualty from the game, coming off with a hamstring injury.
“I haven’t spoken to the docs but it was serious enough to get him out of the game so we will have to see how it is,” Longmuir said.