Games Played 229
Career 2003 - 2014
Guernsey Number 25
Date of Birth 28/05/1983
AFC Debut Number: 136 AFC Debut Game: Round 16 v Fremantle, 2003
AFC Career Guernsey Number: 25
Ben ‘Truck’ Rutten forged a successful 229-game career after coming off Adelaide’s rookie list following a challenging initiation to the AFL. Overlooked in two national drafts after having a knee reconstruction as a West Adelaide junior, Rutten was finally picked up in the 2002 Rookie Draft with pick No. 40.
When he debut in 2003 he booted three goals with his first three kicks, but over time Neil Craig opted to utilise his big body in defence. “Truck” was recognised in 2005 with an All Australian selection in full-back after a rapid rise to one of the League’s best one-on-one stoppers. He was known for his size, strength and ability to contain some of the game’s best forwards.
During a nine-season run from 2005-2013 he rarely missed a game and was arguably one of the most dependable players at the Club. During his final AFL season he spread his workload between the AFL and SANFL, and after kicking three goals on debut he fittingly kicked his ninth AFL goal in his last ever game. In 2016 he joined Richmond as an assistant coach. In 2019 he joined the Essendon coaching group, working as assistant to John Worsfold in succession plan to take over as Head Coach from 2021.