Their season was looking shaky during the mid-season bye but, after four wins in a row, Richmond have jumped into premiership calculations.

Which makes this Friday night's showdown with Collingwood – a club that has dropped three of its past four matches – such a compelling encounter to start AFL round 19.

Football writer Caroline Wilson offers a word of caution, especially after the Tigers have fallen badly in their past two clashes with last year's grand finalists, including an infamous defeat in the preliminary final.

"Everyone seems to be talking up Richmond at the moment and, this is not a beanie-wearing comment, but it's a cautionary comment: they've not beaten one team in the top four this year," Wilson says.

"They haven't played Brisbane, they haven't played West Coast."

On The Age Real Footy Podcast this week, Michael Gleeson, Jake Niall, Jimmy Bartel and Caroline Wilson examine the key question surrounding Richmond: are they the real deal?

As the AFL coaching merry-go-round continues to gather pace after St Kilda and Alan Richardson parted company last week – leaving three AFL caretaker coaches trying to impress – there's more forensic analysis of who might land at Carlton, North Melbourne and the Saints.

Also this week, the draft implications that stem from this Saturday's Carlton v Adelaide clash, and an assessment of the crucial umpiring decision paid against North Melbourne’s Scott Thompson in the dying minutes of Brisbane's victory at the Gabba.

And catch up on big talking points across the league with Just Between Us whispers with Daniel Cherny and Scott Spits.

Find The Age Real Footy Podcast on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Omny and RSS.

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