Essendon VFL have fallen to Brisbane in their round one clash at the NEC Hangar on Saturday, the Lions taking a 15.9 (99) to 9.8 (62) result.

Despite giving a solid account of themselves at different stages throughout the day, the Bombers were undone by a well-timed run of goals from the Lions after half-time, eventually conceding nine goals to two in the third term.

A tight first half saw the Bombers bring the heat to Brisbane with the first couple of goals, including a terrific solo effort from the returning Jayden Davey.

Early signs from the Bombers' draftees were promising, with Nate Caddy booting two early goals and Luamon Lual frequently looking to take the game on with his leg speed from half back.

Jackson Hately (22 touches, seven tackles) and Tom Toma (18 touches, two goals) were tough in the clinches for the Dons, lending strong contested efforts even when the Lions gained the ascendancy after the break.

Despite some brave defending from the Dons, Brisbane's volume of forward-50 entries with the assistance of the third-term breeze proved too many to handle, with the margin sitting at 52 points by the final change.

A run of four goals in the final term saw the Dons run the game out well, showcasing the fast-paced footy they'll look to develop over the course of the season with their young list.

Among the brightest performers was winger Archie Roberts, who looked composed on debut with 25 disposals and a late goal.

The Bombers look ahead to a matchup with Sandringham at Trevor Barker Beach Oval next Sunday.

ESSENDON     2.0     3.4     5.4    9.8   (62)
BRISBANE      2.3     4.5     13.8     15.9  (99)

Toma 2, Caddy 2, Smartt, Roberts, Peris, Eckersley, J. Davey