The Positions of AFL – Defenders
Marking backs are typically bigger bodied players and will defend the Marking forwards of the opposition. They need to be strong in the contest one on one, making use of good body position and the spoil. The Marking Backs can be dangerous if they have the ability to out-mark their opponent and run and carry to quickly turn from defending to attacking. Playing out of defence relies on them being able to follow the team plan and be accurate with their kicking to the midfield.
Roving Backs are typically smaller and quicker than the marking defenders, looking to get to the contest and clear the ball away from the danger area in front of goal. They have to be able to stay with their player when the opposition has the ball or the ball is being contested, but also be able to run and carry the ball when there is a turnover. Roving backs who can turn defence into offence are major assets to an AFL side.