Think bargains these days and it might be a supermarket discount, an end-of-season clothing clear-out, or a weekly promotion. But if you are a Brisbane Lions supporter thinking bargains you think of one player… Harris Andrews.

Set to play his 200th AFL game against Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval on Saturday afternoon, Andrews has been pure gold since he was picked up with pick #61 in the 2014 AFL National Draft.

He’s certainly the best late pick in Brisbane’s 38-year history in the National Draft, and there’s an argument to say he will finish among the best players taken 60-plus all-time.

It’s a five-star, gold-plated fairytale about a one-time Aspley full forward and Padua College student who 12 months out from his draft year was not even in the Lions Academy, let alone on the radar of AFL clubs.

Yet on Saturday afternoon the 27-year-old fullback, Lions co-captain, dual All-Australian and reigning Merrett/Murray Medalist will be the second player from the draft class of 2014 to reach 200 games – a week behind Collingwood’s Brayden Maynard. And that’s only because Maynard, who was drafted at pick #30, has played 14 finals and Andrews only 12.

Andrews will be the 20th Brisbane player and the 17th Queenslander to an AFL double-century that was effectively ‘born’ on a cold afternoon at Werribee, south-west of Melbourne, when the Queensland Under 18 side played the Geelong Falcons in the last game of their season.

The 2014 AFL Queensland Year in Review recalled how the match against the eventual TAC Cup finalists hung in the balance until the final siren before the Maroons took a one-point win after Andrews, described as a “forward turned defender”, swung the game with a string of contested intercept marks in the final quarter.

Lions Recruiting Manager Steve Conole remembers it as the turning point in the pre-AFL career of a player who had only joined the Lions Academy in his draft year.

“He (Andrews) was a late developer. In 2013 he’d kicked 80 goals and was the leading goal-kicker in the NEAFL Under 18s competition which indirectly got him into the Lions Academy.

“But he’d  played mainly forward until that game at Werribee, when he showed the sort of talent that has made him what he is now … and thankfully so because players of his ability, leadership and character are very rare,” Conole recalled.

Yet Andrews hadn’t even been in the discussion before, on 7 August 2013, the AIS/AFL Academy squad was named after the Australian Under 16 Championships in Sydney.

Always an excellent pointer to the draft that would follow 15 months later, the 32-man squad included Queenslanders Liam Dawson (Redcliffe), Matthew Hammelmann (Morningside) and Lachie Weller (Broadbeach), plus future AFL stars Isaac Heeney, Liam Duggan, Darcy Moore, Angus Brayshaw, Jake Lever, Peter Wright, Jarrod Pickett, Clem Smith and Nakia Cockatoo.

Dawson and Hammelmann were members of the Lions Academy and Weller likewise at the Gold Coast Suns, although he had not lived on the coast long enough to be a priority selection.

Fast forward to draft time for this group and it was a different story in a different system.

At the time, long before the introduction of the current points and bidding system, which is now under review, clubs were required to nominate potential father/son and Academy selections in advance. At the time it was 3 October 2014. Then came a low-key meeting on 6 October, six weeks before the draft on 27 November, when clubs could bid round-by-round on opposition talent.

There was none of the saturation research that is part of this exhaustive process today. Bids were rare and to retain a father/son or academy player the Lions only had to forgo their next pick in the draft.  

It was the year in which the Lions had traded Joel Patfull to GWS for pick #21 in the draft, traded #21 to Geelong for Allen Christensen, and traded #5 and #25 plus Jack Crisp to Collingwood for Dayne Beams before signing Mitch Robinson as a delisted free agent.

So when Richmond bid on Dawson the Lions gave up their first ‘live’ pick’ at #44 to keep him. And, after every club had passed three times up the opportunity to bid on Andrews, the Lions gleefully matched a notional fourth-round bid from North Melbourne with pick #61.

Some might even say it was fate. After all, Andrews was born in the Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy in 1996, and moved to Brisbane as a four-year-old in 2000.

Twenty-four years after he became a Queenslander and almost 10 years after he was drafted Andrews is one of 17 players from the 2014 draft – and one of five current club captains - who have played 150 AFL games. And aside from rookie picks Adam Saad, Jack Sinclair and Jayden Short he was lowest on the pecking order. They are:-

200 – Brayden Maynard (Coll) - #30
199 – Harris Andrews (Bris) - #61
190 – Isaac Heeney – Syd – #18
189 – Christian Petracca (Melb) - #2
186 – Touk Miller (GC) - #29
186 – Caleb Daniel (WB) - #46
185 – Adam Saad (Carl) – R#25
178 – Jack Sinclair (StK) – R#1
172 – Jack Steele (StK) - #24
171 – Liam Duggan (WC) - #11
170 – Jake Lever (Melb) - #14
169 – Ed Langdon (Melb) - #54
167 – Angus Brayshaw (Melb) - #3
166 – Jordan deGoey (Coll) - #5
166 – Jayden Short (Rich) – R#11
166 – Alex Neal-Bullen (Melb) - #40
164 – Darcy Moore (Coll) - #9

Dawson played 18 games with the Lions from 2015-17, Hammelmann 12 games in 2016-17, and Weller, originally drafted by Fremantle at pick #13 before being traded to the Suns, is sitting on 136 AFL games as he recovers from his second knee reconstruction.

Having debuted under Justin Leppitsch with 62nd-gamer Dayne Zorko and 18th-gamer Darcy Gardiner in Round 3 2015, Andrews has finished top 10 in the Merrett/Murray Medal every year.

He went 8-10-8-5-10-6-6-4 from 2015-22 before he pipped Brownlow Medallist Lachie Neale to claim the coveted club championship in 2023.

His medal win was the highlight of a career which also includes an All-Australian blazer in 2019-20 and selection in the All-Australian squad in 2018-23.

In 2017, after just 36 AFL games, he was appointed to the leadership group, and won the first of three consecutive ‘Most Professional Player’ Awards in a pointer to subsequent roles as vice-captain from 2018-22 and co-captain with Neale from 2023-24.

The unflappable and ever-humble defender, who will be 27 years 194 days old on Saturday, will be the third-youngest Lions 200-gamer behind Nigel Lappin (26/317) and Jason Akermanis (27/109) and just ahead of Marcus Ashcroft (27/197) and Michael Voss (27/272).

For the statistically-minded, ages for the club’s other 200-gamers are Simon Black (28/53), Darryl White and Luke Power (28/102), Chris Scott (28/145), Justin Leppitsch (28/284), Jonathan Brown (28/297), Daniel Rich (29/43), Jed Adcock (29/252), Daniel Bradshaw (29/276), Ash McGrath (30/34), Shaun Hart (30/94), Tim Notting (30/221), Chris Johnson (30/347), Daniel Merrett (31/260) and Dayne Zorko (32/151).

Having missed just 19 games since his debut, including four with a foot problem in 2016 and four with concussion in 2018 after a blow which cost GWS’ Jeremy Cameron a five-match suspension, Andrews will rank fourth on the club’s ‘most durable 200-gamer’’ list.

Only Zorko (7), Ashcroft and Lappin (18) have missed fewer games on their way to 200.

Andrews also will sit comfortably on a list of 200-game Queenslanders that includes Nick Riewoldt (336 games), Jason Akermanis (325), Marcus Ashcroft (318), Michael Voss (289), Jason Dunstall (269), Dayne Zorko (263), Jarrod Harbrow (262), Gavin Crosisca (246), Mal Michael (238), David Hale (237), Max Hudghton (234), Charlie Cameron (215), Charlie Dixon (213), Sam Gilbert (208), Scott McIvor (200) and Daniel Merrett (200).

Andrews will be the eighth player in AFL history to play 200 games in jumper #31, and while six above him are well within reach he faces a battle to the #1 spot held by Essendon counterpart Dustin Fletcher at 400 games.

Also ahead of the Lions #31 are St.Kilda’s Jeff Sarau (210 games), Carlton’s Tom Alvin (218), Essendon’s Hugh Mitchell (223), Sydney’s Brett Kirk, Melbourne and Carlton legend Ron Barassi (253) and Fremantle’s Aaron Sandilands.

Which brings us back to the best late draft pick of all-time.

Andrews will be just the second Brisbane player drafted after pick #50 in the national draft to reach 200 games. He follows Daniel Bradshaw, who was pick #56 in 1995.


Other notables have been 2012-13 club champion Joel Patfull, who played 182 games as pick #56 in 2005, 2010 club champion Michael Rischitelli, who was drafted at #61 in 2003 and played 111 games with Brisbane  before joining the Gold Coast, and 2001-02 premiership ruckman Beau McDonald, who was drafted #73 and played 91 games.

Andrews will be the 22nd player in AFL history taken beyond #60 in the national draft to play 200 games, joining a list which includes Rischitelli, current Lions assistant-coach Cam Bruce, who was #64 to Melbourne in 1999 and played 234 games with Melbourne and Hawthorn, and current Bulldogs utility Taylor Duryea, who was pick #69 to Hawthorn in 2009. The list is:-

280 – Justin Westhoff (Port) - #71 - 2006
271 – Taylor Walker (Adel) - #75 - 2007
265 – Scott Burns (Coll) - #90 - 1992
253 – James Hird (Ess) - #79 - 1990
251 – Brian Lake (WB/Haw) - #71 - 2001
243 – Michael Rischitelli (Bris/GC) - #61 - 2003
235 – Ben Johnson (Coll) - #62 - 1999
234 – Cam Bruce (Melb/Haw) - #64 - 1999
228 – Russell Robertson (Melb) - #68 - 1996
228 – Adam Schneider (Syd) - #60 - 2001
227 – Graham Johncock (Adel) - #67 - 2000
221 – Andrew Thompson (StK) - #62 - 1996
210 – Nick Malceski (Syd/GC) - #64 - 2002
207 – Damien Hardwick (Ess/Port) - #87 - 1992
204 – Byron Pickett (NM/Port/Melb) - #67 - 1996
203 – Ben Dixon (Haw) - #77 - 2003
203 – Ryan Hargave (WB) - #66 - 1999
204 – Taylor Duryea (Haw/WB) - #69 - 2009
201 – Ryan Houlihan (Carl) - #73 - 1999
200 – Mathew Stokes (Geel/Ess) - #61 - 2005

Taylor Walker, officially drafted at #75, is something of an exception. Originally from Broken Hill, he was part of an AFL NSW Scholarship scheme introduced in 2010 whereby clubs only had to give up their last draft pick to claim a member of this program.

Oddly, if you cut the minimum draft number from 60 to 50 the adjusted list will see at #2 Lions legend Alastair Lynch. He went to Fitzroy at #50 in the first AFL National Draft in 1986 and played 306 games with Fitzroy and Brisbane.

Lynch is one of only two 300-gamers drafted at #50 or beyond in the national draft. Ahead of him is the Western Bulldogs’ Chris Grant, who was pick #105 in 1988 and played 341 games.

All going well, they will be joined in 2026 by Lachie Neale, who was drafted at #58 by Fremantle and has played 253 games with the Dockers and the Lions.