CHRIS Judd is handing over the captaincy, to either Marc Murphy or Andrew Carrazzo, partly because he is tired of a job that he never sought but twice was forced by circumstances to accept.
Chris Newman is passing the parcel - hopefully vetted by the Punt Road bomb squad - to Trent Cotchin. Newman's end-of-season explanation echoed a famed election slogan. ''I just think it's time,'' he said. ''Mentally, it might be a good one for me, too.''
Newman observed then that he ''probably wouldn't have made the decision if I didn't feel like there were some guys who are able to step into my shoes and do an even better job''.
For ''some guys'', read Cotchin. Brett Deledio is the only other conceivable candidate but he is not cut from the same cloth as Cotchin. That said, one could argue, as Leigh Matthews has, that Richmond is taking a punt by promoting a 22-year-old to a role that has become so much more demanding.
But a contemporary of both Newman and Judd's, Nick Riewoldt, is likely to retain the captaincy at St Kilda, which sees little point in forcing the skipper to hand over to another player from the same generation.
The Saints don't have a clear cut younger successor, such as Cotchin or Murphy, who is ready to grab the baton and sprint. Brendon Goddard, a possible bridge, is gone and wasn't seen as the optimum choice anyway.
So Saint Nick, who is contracted for two seasons, may have to run another lap, probably for the next 12 months.
To push Riewoldt out and then give the captaincy to Leigh Montagna or Nick Dal Santo - or even giving a 33-year-old Lenny Hayes a 12-month reward for heroism - would represent status quo anyway; the team would remain driven by the Riewoldt generation, which has been highly successful by all measures - this is the only club to have won 12 games or more for 10 seasons consecutively - except THE one.
Saints fans don't need reminding of the litany of recruiting mishaps, in trading and drafting, that have deprived them of players in the 23 to 27-year-old band. Ben McEvoy and James Gwilt can play and are in the right demographic, but neither has done enough, as footballers and particularly as leaders, to earn the mandate of their peers and coaches.
In the 2013 AFL, in which leadership groups act like a jury and are expected to forge a magical winning ''culture'', captaincy can sound like military service or admission to a management consultant cult. The wonder is not that Dane Swan quit Collingwood's leadership group this time last year, but that the laconic ''Swanny'' was ever part of it.
Clubs worked out over the past decade that the best players weren't necessarily the ideal leaders, an obvious insight that led the Swans to appoint their formative, culture-shaping skipper Stuart Maxfield.
In recent times, there have been two main species of captains. One I would call ''officer class''. As the name suggests, the officer class skipper is articulate and leads by example; while not necessarily aloof, or remote, there's a palpable sense that he is above the fray. Unlike most players, he is at ease speaking to a microphone, to a sponsor or briefing the club's board. He establishes high standards and, with senior teammates, ensures that they are enforced.
Tom Harley, James Hird, Nathan Buckley, Sam Mitchell, Matthew Lloyd and, perhaps, Judd are or were officer class captains.
The second species could be called ''One of the boys''. These captains are never above the fray. If there is drinking going on, they will be pissed off to be missing it, partly because they enjoy it, but also because they have the rare talent of controlling teammates in social settings. They are not as media-adept as the officer class captain, or at handling the hierarchies.
What they have is the ability to galvanise the group and, once they've matured, to impose limits on off-field excess. They are invariably hard-nosed players, with a good feel for player 41 on the list.
Luke Hodge, Jonathan Brown, Mark Ricciuto, Stephen Kernahan, Michael Voss and - the apotheosis of ''one of the boys'' captaincy, Wayne Carey - are examples of the earthy, first among equals - captain. While there are hybrids and others who don't fit these types, you'll find most skippers lean towards one or the other; Hawthorn has veered from extremes of both.
Riewoldt is consumate officer class. He is tough on teammates and even tougher on himself and absolutely full-bore in professionalism and devotion. For a time, in St Kilda's troubled 2011, it appeared as though the leadership duties had overwhelmed Riewoldt, as he chose to be the front man for a team that was dealing with everything from grand final trauma and embarrassing material from a teenage girl to players taking sleeping pills in New Zealand.
Riewoldt's way is to stand up, take responsibility, be forthright and upright. He tries to have a presence. The worry in 2011 was that these issues were dragging him down on the field.
But Riewoldt stayed the course and Scott Watters stuck with him, on the grounds that stability was needed in a list that was to have radical surgery over 12 months, as the core players aged. Riewoldt responded with his best season since 2009 and the view of club insiders is that the team responsibilities actually helped him to forget about his own woes and recapture form.
The Saints have left it up to Riewoldt to decide. He is happy to do the job, but equally, wouldn't quibble if a handover was deemed timely.
But this is not the time and Seaford is not the place.