Adelaide started confidently with a 66-point win over Carlton and the good form continued over the opening two months of the competition. Losses to Hawthorn and Essendon in Rounds Eight and Nine – with the Hawthorn defeat a 97-point thumping – put Adelaide out of the top eight for the first time in 1994.
The Crows could not recover and while they sat in ninth, the elusive breakthrough win was just out of reach. Arguably the turning point could have been the Round 14 clash with St Kilda, where Adelaide held the Saints scoreless in the final term but inaccuracy meant the game ended in a draw.
Dropping down the ladder, Adelaide lost five of its next six and wins over fellow strugglers Essendon and Brisbane did little to stop the sink. The Crows ended up in 11th place, 10 points adrift of finals.
Ruckman Shaun Rehn was a dominant force despite any team struggles and as a result won the Club Champion Award. He was an All-Australian alongside Mark Ricciuto.