There was no change at all on MARS Rankings this week, though the gap between the teams ranked 4th and 14th grew to a season-high 57.8 Ratings Points and that between 4th and 8th rose to a near season-high 24.5 Ratings Points, just 0.07 Ratings Points less than the record.
The top six teams all gained Ratings Points, while six of the bottom seven teams, representing all of the teams that played this round, all shed Points. Nine teams now have an above-average Rating.
Across the last five rounds, 10 teams have gained Ratings Points, chief amongst them St Kilda, which has bagged over 11 Points, going some way to justifying the elevated rating that MARS has attributed to them since the start of the season.
Collingwood and Carlton have also gained over 5 Ratings Points, while Fremantle and Sydney have each acquired over 4 Ratings Points, in Freo's case from only four games.
Richmond, Melbourne and the Gold Coast have been the competition's O blood type, acting as universal donors by contributing amongst them over 26 Ratings Points to other teams higher up the ladder.
Port Adelaide, Adelaide and the Brisbane Lions, while less generous, have nonetheless contributed about 4 Ratings Points each into the available pool. Geelong is the only other team to have shed Ratings Points over this five round period, dropping 1.7 Ratings Points in that time.
The remaining five teams - Hawthorn, the Dogs, the Roos, the Dons and the Eagles - have each made small Ratings Point acquisitions across Rounds 14 to 18.
During these five rounds only two teams have shifted by more than 1 spot on the MARS Ratings ladder. Fremantle has jumped 2 spots from 12th to 10th (having fallen 3 spots in Round 14), while Melbourne has dropped 2 spots from 10th to 12th.
The only other teams to move have been Adelaide and Richmond, swapping 13th and 14th, plus St Kilda and Sydney, swapping 5th and 6th.
Rankings based on Colley and Massey Ratings were considerably less stable than MARS rankings this week, with 8 teams changing ranks on Colley Ratings and 6 changing ranks on Massey Ratings.
For Colley Ratings, the biggest mover was Sydney up 3 places from 9th to 6th, Essendon down 2 places from 7th to 9th, and Fremantle also down 2 places from 6th to 8th.
On Massey Ratings, Essendon also fell 2 places, here down from 6th to 8th, while the Saints were the only other team to move by more than 1 spot, up two positions from 8th to 6th.
These changes leave Essendon, Fremantle, West Coast and the Western Bulldogs as the only teams where the rankings across MARS, Colley and Massey differ by more than 2 positions. The largest discrepancies are for the Dogs, ranked 8th on MARS and 12th on Colley, and for Fremantle, ranked 8th on Colley and 12th on MARS. Other significant differences exist for Essendon, ranked 8th on Massey and 11th on MARS, and for West Coast, ranked 4th on Colley and 7th on MARS.