They might have cooked it beyond belief by not even qualifying for this year’s Grand Final, but Richmond are already in the box seat to take out the 2019 AFL Premiership, according to bookmakers.

West Coast are still celebrating their remarkable 2018 flag, but the books on next year’s Premiership are open and the odds of them going back-to-back aren’t exactly short.

Rather, it’s Richmond, who ran roughshod over the competition for much of the 2018 season, who are tipped to go all the way in 2019.

With gun key forward Tom Lynch likely on his way to the club in the trade and free agency period, both Sportsbet and TAB have the Tigers at $5.00 favourites to win the 2019 Premiership.

Interestingly enough, the markets for West Coast repeating their Premiership glory in 2019 differ greatly, with Sportsbet listing the Eagles at $7.00, but TAB having them rank outsiders at $11.00 in 2019.

The odds remain reasonably short on Melbourne getting their act together after a disappointing 2019 Preliminary Final loss, with the Demons at $7.00 across the board.

Collingwood, who came within 5 points of an unlikely Premiership win, are also at short odds for next year’s flag at $7.00 and $8.00 respectively.

Where it gets really interesting is in the slightly longer odds. Not one of HawthornGeelongSydney, or Adelaide are paying less than $10.00 for the 2019 flag, and GWS just scrapes in with current odds of $9.00.

And for those of you who enjoy a long-odds flutter, there’s insane value to be had in punting on a bolter via the likes of Essendon (currently paying around $15.00) and Port Adelaide (around $18.00), and at $67.00 via Sportsbet, there’s definitely worse things you can do with your spare change than slapping down $10 on Brisbane to go all the way in 2019.

For those of you into symmetry and numbers and omens and the like: the 2017 and 2018 Grand Finals both featured teams who finished in 13th place the year before. The Western Bulldogs filled that spot on this year’s AFL ladder. Right now they’re paying anywhere from $34.00 up to $51.00 for the 2019 flag depending on your outlet.

Will it pay off? Probably not. But this is the AFL after all, where stranger things have absolutely happened.

As always, y’know, gamble responsibly and etc.

Image: Getty Images / Michael Dodge