Speed is king!
Every contest is a race so you need to get there and without adequate speed, you'll never win.
Over 80% of all sprint efforts in a game of footy are acceleration based so there's no understating it's importance.
You need to be accelerate as fast as you can to not only get to short balls, but it will also improve your max velocity speed as well.
You also need to be able to accelerate from a variety of positions during a game.
You can expect a drop of .2-.4secs off your 20m sprint time and .3 - .6secs off your 40m sprint time after following all 3 acceleration and max velocity programs..
It might not seem like much but that equates to being 1 - 1.5m faster over those distances then your opposition which is more then enough time to gather the ball be on your way!