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Jordan's AFL opportunity

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It was a great opportunity and a great experience and certainly one that was great for me as a developing coach.”
Dan Jordan

There was a new face in the senior coaches box during Essendon’s victory over Brisbane last week when VFL coach Dan Jordan received a late call-up into a crucial game day role.

When experienced performance coach Rob Harding fell sick before the game, head coach John Worsfold knew just who to call.

With Jordan’s extensive knowledge of the playing list and intricacies of the club’s game plan, there was no better person to take the important reins.

“Our team offence and opposition coach Rob Harding came down sick on Saturday, so he obviously plays that role on weekends and match days,” Jordan said on The Essential Listen.

“Woosha gave me a buzz on Saturday morning and said, ‘we need someone to fill in’.

“I do a fair bit of that stuff in the VFL in a similar vein, so I was pretty comfortable with doing the role.

“I thought the coaches and the players really executed what we were after pretty well and got a good result, which is great for the club.”

 

The exciting opportunity was a whirlwind experience for Jordan, who was already busy at The Hangar with plans to spend time with his young family on a rare weekend off due the VFL side’s bye.

“I had plans to reacquaint myself with my family and I’d actually promised my daughter to go to the football, which she was very much looking forward to.

“I was in here (at the club) helping Heath Hocking out with a few of his young Next Generation Academy boys and doing a presentation for them, which I had to sack half way.

“It was 11 o’clock and the team meeting was at around 1pm, so I had to get things rolling pretty quickly and get a fair few ice creams on the way home for the daughter to appease her.

“It was a great opportunity and a great experience and certainly one that was great for me as a developing coach.”

The late change may have upset the synergy of some other teams, but Jordan said he settled into the fresh job well and everything ran to plan.

“I had to adjust my focus a few times and I’ve found that across my journey a little bit, starting as a development coach and just coaching a line at VFL level and also then going into the senior coach role, you had to adjust your focus going off a line into the overall team performance and strategy.

“On the weekend, being really specific around our team offence and how we were moving the ball, and also catching up with what the opposition were doing and relaying that to all of the coaches in there (was my role).

“We’ve got a really good, collaborative group of coaches and I thought the box was pretty smooth.”

Jordan was grateful for the rare chance to be a vital part of the senior coaching ranks and he joked that the team’s 47-point win may put some pressure on Harding to reclaim his spot.

“I was really thankful for the opportunity and thankful that they had the confidence in me to come in, contribute and play a role.

“It was nothing new to me, I wasn’t nervous or anything like that, it was just another role that we were playing and being really familiar with the players and being familiar with the other coaches, it was quite seamless.

“A few of the boys have given Rob a bit of feedback that maybe he’s redundant now, but I’m sure that’s not the case, so I’ll be back to the VFL this week and continuing in my role.”

He will resume his regular duties leading the VFL Bombers when the side takes on North Melbourne at Avalon Airport Oval in Werribee on Saturday.