Craig McRae seems the perfect man to leave the relics of the ‘Colliwobbles’ in the past.
With a plethora of young talent to pick from and some wylie-old veterans still playing good football, Collingwood has the right balance between youth and experience.
Scott Pendlebury’s shift to half-back has opened up the opportunity for the likes of Josh and Nick Daicos to move through the midfield as well as new recruit Patrick Lipinski.
The result has seen Collingwood become one the premier centre-clearance teams in the league.
Collingwood ranks fourth in the league for centre clearances per game, which is such an important area in gaining territory and field position on opponents.
The return of Jordan De Goey from an off-field saga has been smooth and he has looked in good nick through the first few rounds.
We know how good of a player De Goey is.
A match-winner at his very best.
The knock on Collingwood last season was its inability to move the ball quickly into its forward half.
McRae has knocked this on its head early in the piece.
Collingwood looked super potent going forward of centre and if Jamie Elliot can stay fit (famous last words), then the Pies can do damage on the scoreboard.
McRae’s ball movement has led to the Pies ramping up their scoring and they might have found a beauty in the VFL with Ash Johnson developing into handy tall forward.
If the Pies can get the tall forward issue sorted out, look out.
Jeremy Howe and Brayden Maynard combining together in the Pies defensive 50 provides them with an aerial threat, lock-down ability and a heap of rebound 50s.
The sign of development for this Pies team is its early season results against St Kilda and Adelaide.
All three teams were in around each other last season, but the Pies accounted for both the Saints and Crows quite comfortably.
The next step is taking the scalp of a team like Geelong or Melbourne.
Collingwood showed it can match it and nearly beat the very best in the league.
With a bit of a fine-tuning of the game plan and some more experience into the legs of their youngsters, September beckons.