Ben Jacobs finally feels at home in North Melbourne's best team after a breakthrough 2015 season.
7:15am Sep 1, 2015
Ben Jacobs has earned a contract extension for 2016 after reinventing himself as a run-with midfielder.
11:24am Aug 7, 2015
Junior club: Brighton Grammar
Recruited from: Port Adelaide
Former club: Port Adelaide
Draft: #16, 2010 National (PA)
#37, 2012 National (NM)
Debut: Round 8, 2011 v Sydney (PA)
- Contested ball winner
- Penetrating disposal
- Stephen & Marian George
Jacobs received significant interest in his draft year of 2010, his sparkling form for Sandringham and Vic Metro raising eyebrows.
Throughout the national championships, Jacobs averaged 29 disposals a game and was a player who could win his own ball and use his long left foot to set up forward forays.
Port Adelaide eventually selected him with pick 16 in 2010, but after two interrupted seasons at Alberton, Jacobs announced he wanted to return home to Victoria.
Deciding that North Melbourne was the only club he wanted to come back to, Jacobs entered the 2012 National Draft. The Kangaroos gladly selected the midfielder with pick 37.
After completing his first ever full pre-season, Jacobs benefited with arguably the best of his four year AFL career.
Jacobs made three early appearances in the North Melbourne side as a substitute and inside midfielder, delivering with an impressive final term against Port Adelaide in Round 3.
The left-footer then went back to North Ballarat and looked a class above in most of his outings. In his first four VFL games for the year, Jacobs averaged an astounding 36.5 disposals per game.
Eventually the quality VFL form earned him a recall to the senior side, as he played 11 of the last 12 games for the year. In a departure from his normal role, he played as a half-back and consistently provided another avenue for North to rebound from defensive 50.
Jacobs was rewarded for his solid 2014 with a new one-year contract.
Mid season, from Darren Crocker
“We were playing him on the wing in the early stages when he got an opportunity in the NAB Cup but back at VFL level we’ve played him more as an inside midfielder.
“For Ben it’s about learning the way we need him to play so he becomes a valuable contributor for us.
“Physically he’s a pretty mature guy and he’s not too far away. Just from a game sense perspective he’s still working on a few things."
End of season review
An injury to Andrew Swallow opened up a midfield spot in the last six weeks of the season and Jacobs was the beneficiary.
Jacobs significantly improved his disposal efficiency when compared to his two years at Port Adelaide. In 2012 the left footer's efficiency was at 65.4 per cent but it improved to 77.6 in his first year at North.
- Disposals: 12
- Contested disposals: 6
- Time on Ground: 62%
Round 1, 2013 v Collingwood
Venue: Etihad Stadium
North Melbourne: 5.2.32, 8.4.52, 9.7.61, 13.9.87
Collingwood: 3.5.23, 8.6.54, 12.10.82, 15.13.103