Squad Breakdown: Round 2 team insights

We analyse all the key SC ins and outs following the release of Round 2 teams.

Squad Breakdown

The opening weekend of NRL SuperCoach action saw guns flop, mid-rangers generally produce the goods, and a few unsuspecting cheapies emerge.

One word of advice before analysing the Round 2 teams, chill out! There’s more widespread fear over under-performing SuperCoach players than there is coronavirus.

Attacking units are always clunky early in the season as combinations develop, add in a stack of rain and you have a handful of poor scores.

Unless they were forwards who played fewer minutes than predicted, give your players, and your own knowledge, the benefit of the doubt by backing them for more than a one week sample size.

Let’s get into it…

*Scroll down to the bottom of the page for a key on all SuperCoach relevant abbreviations.

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BULLDOGS v COWBOYS

Thursday, 8.05pm, ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Bulldogs

1. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 2. Nick Meaney 3. Reimis Smith 4. Will Hopoate 5. Christian Crichton 6. Brandon Wakeham 7. Lachlan Lewis 8. Aiden Tolman 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Dylan Napa 11. Josh Jackson 12. Joe Stimson 13. Adam Elliott 

Bench: 14. Dean Britt 15. Renouf To’omaga 16. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 17. Jake Averillo

Reserves: 19. Ofahiki Ogden 20. Morgan Harper 21. Sione Katoa 22. Jack Cogger

Analysis: Brandon Wakeham (27) failed to impress as a cheapie against the Eels. He did kick goals though in a very positive sign for owners, however, early on it appears the likes of Jarome Luai and George Williams are better options in a similar price bracket. Joe Stimson (70-minutes) needs the full 80 to warrant consideration as a buy.

Cowboys
1. Valentine Holmes 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Justin O’Neill 4. Esan Marsters 5. Ben Hampton 6. Scott Drinkwater 7. Michael Morgan 8. Josh McGuire 9. Jake Granville 10. Jordan McLean 11. Gavin Cooper 12. Coen Hess 13. Jason Taumalolo 

Bench: 14. Reece Robson 15. John Asiata 16. Mitchell Dunn 17. Francis Molo 

Reserves: 18. Corey Jensen 19. Shane Wright 20. Tom Opacic 21. Jake Clifford

Analysis: Val Holmes (69) returned to the NRL with a bang, scoring a try and assisting another. Ignore his base of just 23, it was a hot season opener in Townsville and players were dropping like flies with cramp.

Esan Marsters (77) was a major highlight of the round, notching a hardly believable 45 base point made up mainly of 23 runs, while he also offloaded five times. Wait one more week to see if he can back it up, then jump on if he comes anything close to his workload again. Jason Taumalolo (70) was solid, he likely played increased minutes with the injury to Justin O’Neill who was replaced by back-rower Mitch Dunn.

Scott Drinkwater (71) delivered for owners, but his base of 17 is a serious concern. Coen Hess (38) struggled despite playing the full 80, and we don’t know if this will be his regular game time due to the O’Neill injury.

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DRAGONS v PANTHERS

Friday, 6pm, Jubilee Stadium, Sydney

Dragons

1. Matt Dufty 2. Jordan Pereira 3. Brayden Wiliame 4. Tim Lafai 5. Zac Lomax 6. Corey Norman 7. Ben Hunt 8. James Graham 9. Issac Luke 10. Paul Vaughan 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Tyrell Fuimaono 13. Blake Lawrie 

Bench: 14. Trent Merrin 15. Josh Kerr 16. Billy Brittain 17. Jacob Host 

Reserves: 18. Jackson Ford 19. Adam Clune 20. Euan Aitken 21. Tristan Sailor

Analysis: While it’s hardly shocking as he couldn’t catch a cold in a tornado, Zac Lomax (55) has been moved to the wing in place of the injured Mikaele Ravalawa, with Matt Dufty to play fullback.

Fortunately, Lomax scored a try to post a respectable score, but the verdict is out on him immediately with the ‘Kahu 2020’ tag still lingering over him. He had just seven runs and was propped up by his goal-kicking.

The Dragons attack was ugly, and Lomax wasn’t given any quality ball. He was worth sticking by at fullback, but he’s a huge concern on the wing and may warrant selling. Paul Vaughan (72) played 68 minutes and is one to watch if he maintains game time, but it was likely inflated with the early injury to Mikaele Ravalawa which saw back-rower Tyrell Fuimaono shift to centre.

Panthers
1. Caleb Aekins 2. Josh Mansour 3. Dean Whare 4. Brent Naden 5. Brian To’o 6. Jarome Luai 7. Nathan Cleary 8. James Tamou 9. Apisai Koroisau 10. Zane Tetevano 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Isaah Yeo 13. James Fisher-Harris 

Bench: 14. Stephen Crichton 15. Billy Burns 16. Moses Leota 17. Liam Martin 

Reserves: 18. Matt Burton 19. Jed Cartwright 20. Kaide Ellis 21. Mitch Kenny

Analysis: Nathan Cleary (73) and Api Koroisau (97)made those who read into fixture difficulty during pre-season pay, for now… The latter is basically a must-have following a starring 80-minute role.

Get him in as a partner to Blayke Brailey, cop the failed Damien Cook gamble on the chin and make some cash. Josh Mansour (65) was back to his old workaholic self, belting out 38 in base and is now a huge option if he backs it up this week. Jarome Luai (57) delivered as a cheapie, but remain very wary of playing him in 17s as he could go very low at any time.

It’s advised to wait a week on Isaah Yeo (95) despite the temptation. He couldn’t have been any more impressive, but injuries to Zane Tetevano (21 minutes) and Viliame Kikau (40 minutes) may well have inflated his game time. His score was propped up by two linebreaks, so confirm he plays 80-minutes again this week then jump on if interested.

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BRONCOS v RABBITOHS

Friday, 8.05pm, Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Broncos
1. Jamayne Isaako 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Darius Boyd 5. Jesse Arthars 6. Anthony Milford 7. Brodie Croft 8. Thomas Flegler 9. Jake Turpin 10. Payne Haas 11. David Fifita 12. Jamil Hopoate 13. Pat Carrigan 

Bench: 14. Herbie Farnworth 15. Andrew McCullough 16. Rhys Kennedy 17. Ethan Bullemor 

Reserves: 18. Xavier Coates 19. Tesi Niu 20. Tom Dearden 21. Pride Petterson-Robati

Analysis: Tevita Pangai Jnr’s four week suspension basically guarantees increased game time to the pack despite the impending returns of Alex Glenn and Joe Ofahengaue. Tom Flegler (52 in 57-minutes), Pat Carrigan (58 in 61-minutes), Payne Haas (74 in 80-minutes) and David Fifita (75 in 80-minutes) all excelled.

Don’t worry about having too many forwards from the same pack, they’re all excellent options, with Haas and Fifita the obvious must-haves. Anthony Milford (54) should rise each week as his combination with Brodie Croft (66) develops. Kotoni Staggs (53) showed he’s a serious option despite losing the goal-kicking duties.

He played just 54-minutes before going down with cramp. Jamayne Isaako (88) went big, impressively he notched 15 runs and had five tackle breaks. I’ll be jumping on if he can reproduce his base stats in Round 2.

Rabbitohs
1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Dane Gagai 3. James Roberts 4. Braidon Burns 5. Campbell Graham 6. Cody Walker 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Tevita Tatola 9. Damien Cook 10. Thomas Burgess 11. Jaydn Su’A 12. Cameron Murray 13. Liam Knight 

Bench: 14. Mark Nicholls 15. Ethan Lowe 16. Hame Sele 17. Alex Johnston 

Reserves: 18. Bryson Goodwin 19. Bayley Sironen 20. Troy Dargan 21. Keaon Koloamatangi

Analysis: Latrell Mitchell(17) played just 56-minutes and is a sell for anyone who took the risk on him. Braidon Burns (24) may have flopped on the surface, but he managed a serious output of 30 in base stats.

Despite rumours he’d make way for Alex Johnston, he played the entire 80-minutes on that left edge where attacking stats will come, do not panic trade him.

Cody Walker (54) was outdone by halves partner Adam Reynolds (81). Walker is a definite hold, Reynolds isn’t in the elite halves options so don’t be tempted. If you took a gamble on Damien Cook (47) he’s a sell for Koroisau.

This is not because Cook is a worry, simply that Koroisau was so damn good and there’s money to be made. Jaydn Su’A showed his lack of SC output with 38 points in 70-minutes.

Give him one more week if your team allows, but he’s a trade option to the likes of Flegler, Guler or Carrigan. Cam Murray (43 in 69 minutes) had a big increase on his game time from 2019 but failed to make it count.

He’s a definite hold, reconsider next week if he flops again. Liam Knight (56) scored impressively at 1.19PPM, but his 47-minutes were significantly less than what owners were hoping for.

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WARRIORS v RAIDERS

Saturday, 3pm, Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast

Warriors
1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 2. Adam Pompey 3. David Fusitu’a 4. Adam Keighran 5. Ken Maumalo 6. Chanel Harris-Tavita 7. Blake Green 8. Leeson Ah Mau 9. Wayde Egan 10. Lachlan Burr 11. Eliesa Katoa 12. Tohu Harris 13. Adam Blair 

Bench: 14. Kodi Nikorima 15. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 16. Isaiah Papali’i 17. King Vuniyayawa 

Reserves: 18. Karl Lawton 20. Hayze Perham 21. Leivaha Pulu 22. Adam Tuimavave-Gerrard

Analysis: Cheapie Eliesa Katoa (51) starts on an edge and may improve on his already promising 51-minutes in Round 1. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown (36) was also solid in his 39-minutes. With uncertainty over the Warriors immediate future, they aren’t worth investing in but obviously if you own them you can hold and see what happens.

Raiders
1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2. Bailey Simonsson 3. Jarrod Croker 4. Curtis Scott 5. Nick Cotric 6. Jack Wighton 7. George Williams 8. Josh Papalii 9. Josh Hodgson 10. Dunamis Lui 11. Joseph Tapine 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Corey Horsburgh 

Bench: 14. Siliva Havili 15. Emre Guler 16. Iosia Soliola 17. Michael Oldfield 

Reserves: 18. Sam Williams 19. Ryan Sutton 20. Harley Smith-Shields 21. Tom Starling

Analysis: Corey Horsburgh(60) and Joe Tapine (51) both impressed with 63 and 80 minutes respectively. Big Red was hard done by for a try-assist, or at very least contribution, and could have gone huge if awarded.

Jack Wighton (91) was immense in Round 1 and will be a very popular purchase this week. I’m calling trap. His career high average was 56PPG, and that was as a fullback.

Yes, he may see more ball this season, but you need to average 65+ to match the elite five-eighths such as Shaun Johnson, Cody Walker and Cam Munster, does he have that significant a rise in him? George Williams (58) looked particularly strong with ball in hand, but I’m not sure the Titans were a legitimate measuring stick for NRL or SuperCoach scoring.

If he can back up his efforts this week he’ll be a strong purchase next week, however at the price he’s a fairly safe purchase this round. Josh Papalii (58) had strong output as usual, however his 50-minutes are a bit of a concern.

Emre Guler (94) was a huge cheapie shock going huge in 45-minutes. Tread with caution, he scored a try, assisted another, had a linebreak and a line-assist. His big score will drop out of his rolling average immediately after his first price rise, and Ryan Sutton returns this week, while John Bateman may not be far off. Watch for one more week, then jump on if he backs up his minutes.

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ROOSTERS v SEA EAGLES

Saturday, 5.30pm, Leichhardt Oval, Sydney

Roosters
1. James Tedesco 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Brett Morris 4. Joseph Manu 5. Matt Ikuvalu 6. Luke Keary 7. Kyle Flanagan 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Jake Friend 10. Siosiua Taukeiaho 11. Angus Crichton 12. Mitchell Aubusson 13. Victor Radley 

Bench: 14. Sam Verrills 15. Isaac Liu 16. Nat Butcher 17. Lindsay Collins 

Reserves: 18. Daniel Fifita 19. Poasa Faamausili 20. Lachlan Lam 21. Asu Kepaoa

Analysis: James Tedesco (39) flopped, but it’s hard to see him not bouncing back this week.The 59th minute injury to Matt Ikuvalu impacted the forward rotation, and the return of Angus Crichton and in time Boyd Cordner will affect this further, so don’t read into it at all.

Sio Siua Taukeiaho (66) was a touch disappointing with his score boosted by a try and minutes likely inflated due to the Ikuvalu injury.

Sea Eagles
1. Tom Trbojevic 2. Jorge Taufua 3. Brad Parker 4. Moses Suli 5. Reuben Garrick 6. Dylan Walker 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Danny Levi 10. Martin Taupau 11. Joel Thompson 12. Curtis Sironen 13. Jake Trbojevic 

Bench: 14. Lachlan Croker 15. Sean Keppie 16. Morgan Boyle 17. Haumole Olakau’atu 

Reserves: 18. Toafofoa Sipley 19. Brendan Elliot 20. Tevita Funa 21. Zac Saddler

Analysis: Tommy Turbo (22) fell in dramatic fashion at the hands of the relentless Melbourne defensive unit, keep faith in the star number one. Addin Fonua-Blake (39 in 52 minutes) and Jake Trbojevic (61 in 80-minutes) had significant time on ground upon surprise returns from injury.

Marty Taupau (65) had an enormous output of 1.33PPM, however his 49-minutes were a concern. They will come into serious consideration far earlier than we anticipated. It’s hard to see cheapies Sean Keppie (25 in 33 minutes) and Haumole Olakau’atu (6 in 17 minutes) getting enough minutes to warrant consideration. Keppie is a hold for now, Olakau’atu can be moved on if needed.

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SHARKS v STORM

Saturday, 7.35pm, Jubilee Stadium, Sydney

Sharks
1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Josh Morris 4. Jesse Ramien 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Shaun Johnson 7. Chad Townsend 8. Andrew Fifita 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Aaron Woods 11. Briton Nikora 12. Wade Graham 13. Jack Williams 

Bench: 14. Connor Tracey 15. Braden Hamlin-Uele 16. Toby Rudolf 17. Scott Sorensen 

Reserves: 18. Billy Magoulias 19. Braydon Trindall 20. Royce Hunt 21. Josh Dugan

Analysis: Jesse Ramien (31) may not have scored well, but stress less. He’s in the same area as Braidon Burns, having notched an impressive 29 in base. More importantly, Shaun Johnson was on fire on his inside, attacking points will come for the strike-centre. SJ (95) was exceptional, assisting two tries to go with a further contribution.

But it’s only week one, he’s not worth the rage trade in place of Mitch Moses yet. Blayke Brailey (38) didn’t score too well, but he played 80-minutes, that’s what owners wanted to see most of all. He’s shown immediately though he shouldn’t be locked into 17s.

Ditto Jack Williams (42) who didn’t score well, but notched an impressive 61 minutes, give him one more week to see if he can up his output. Those who took the risk on Andrew Fifita (31) can count their losses and move him on having played just 39 minutes. Toby Rudolf (29) gets a pass mark with 30-minutes of game time.

Storm
1. Ryan Papenhuyzen 2. Suliasi Vunivalu 3. Marion Seve 4. Justin Olam 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Cameron Smith 10. Tui Kamikamica 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenneath Bromwich 13. Dale Finucane 

Bench: 14. Tino Faasuamaleaui 15. Max King 16. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 17. Tom Eisenhuth 

Reserves: 18. Harry Grant 19. Brenko Lee 20. Ryley Jacks 21. Darryn Schonig

Analysis: Attacking stats didn’t come for Ryan Papenhuyzen (49), but he did have 20 runs, big scores will follow. Jahrome Hughes (82) impressed in actual NRL which translated well to SuperCoach, unsurprisingly as did Cam Smith (70). Jesse Bromwich (70 in 60-minutes) was massive, but his minutes were likely inflated by HIA and injury to Dale Finucane.

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TIGERS v KNIGHTS

Sunday, 4.05pm, Leichhardt Oval, Sydney

Tigers
1. Corey Thompson 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Joseph Leilua 4. Adam Doueihi 5. Robert Jennings 6. Benji Marshall 7. Josh Reynolds 8. Josh Aloiai 9. Billy Walters 10. Alex Twal 11. Luke Garner 12. Luciano Leilua 13. Elijah Taylor 

Bench: 14. Thomas Mikaele 15. Paul Momirovski 16. Zane Musgrove 17. Chris Lawrence 

Reserves: 18. Michael Chee-Kam 19. Oliver Clark 20. Matt Eisenhuth 21. Tommy Talau

Analysis: While his score was inflated by a try, recruit Luciano Leilua (64) impressed and most importantly played 80-minutes and had 49 base points. He will make serious cash if he maintains that game time which looks likely. While I was never keen on him, be patient on Joey Leilua (30) who wasn’t far off jagging several attacking stats.

You picked him for a reason, so have some faith he’ll turn it around as the Tigers new-look right edge begins to gel. Reassess next week if he produces back-to-back flops.

Much to the resistance of Dez and myself, 2019 runner-up Walson Carlos started with David Nofoaluma (109) who top scored for the week, and delivered his usual monster base of 37 points… well played mate.

Billy Walters (51) played the full 80-minutes at hooker, please let him get a few price rises in before the likely arrival of Harry Grant! With Brandon Smith set for an early return from injury, Grant could arrive at the Tigers any day, so don’t buy Walters until we see what happens there.

Benji Marshall (93) added another big score to his two tons in the final three games of last season, and won the kicking duties over Adam Doueihi (27) who is a sell.

Knights
1. Kalyn Ponga 2. Edrick Lee 3. Enari Tuala 4. Gehamat Shibasaki 5. Hymel Hunt 6. Kurt Mann 7. Mitchell Pearce 8. David Klemmer 9. Jayden Brailey 10. Daniel Saifiti 11. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 12. Mitchell Barnett 13. Herman Ese’ese 

Bench: 14. Connor Watson 15. Jacob Saifiti 16. Tim Glasby 17. Aidan Guerra 

Reserves: 18. Pasami Saulo 19. Starford To’a 20. Mason Lino 21. Sione Mata’utia

Analysis: Kalyn Ponga (81) delivered on his hefty price tag. It was a mixed SuperCoach outing for David Klemmer (69) who scored well with a ridiculous output of 1.41PPM, but it’s concerning he only played 49-minutes under new coach Adam O’Brien.

Gehamat Shibasaki (41) and Kurt Mann (49) were solid at their given prices, Enari Tuala (21) not so much. Keep a close eye on Jacob Saifiti (44) who impressed in a surprising 40-minutes of game time. At just $208,400, he could be a sneaky cheapie option next week if he delivers again.

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TITANS v EELS

Sunday, 6.15pm, Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast

Titans
1. Phillip Sami 2. Anthony Don 3. Kallum Watkins 4. Brian Kelly 5. Dale Copley 6. Tyrone Roberts 7. Ash Taylor 8. Jarrod Wallace 9. Mitch Rein 10. Sam Lisone 11. Kevin Proctor 12. Bryce Cartwright 13. Jai Arrow 

Bench: 14. Nathan Peats 15. Jai Whitbread 16. Tyrone Peachey 17. Moeaki Fotuaika 

Reserves: 18. Jaimin Jolliffe 19. Sam Stone 20. Shannon Boyd 21. Alexander Brimson

Analysis: The Gold Coast were woeful in the nation’s capital, however Kallum Watkins (47) impressed as a cheapie with a cracking 35 points in base! I’m still not convinced the Titans have the attacking potential to warrant selecting the Englishman, but if he dishes those numbers up again in Round 2 he’ll be too hard to ignore.

While only slightly underwhelming, Jai Arrow (57) is a forgive for his 53-minute showing after it was revealed he’d been sick entering the clash. Bryce Cartwright (49) played 80-minutes, but on that form it’s hard to see him maintaining that game time for long. Tyrone Peachey (53) has been benched and can be sold.

Eels

1. Clint Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Michael Jennings 4. Waqa Blake 5. Blake Ferguson 6. Dylan Brown 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Junior Paulo 11. Shaun Lane 12. Ryan Matterson 13. Nathan Brown 

Bench: 14. Brad Takairangi 15. Marata Niukore 16. Kane Evans 17. Peni Terepo 

Reserves: 18. David Gower 19. Ray Stone 20. Oregon Kaufusi 21. George Jennings

Analysis: Parramatta’s SuperCoach contingent flopped, but chill out, it’s only been a week! Mitch Moses (32), Maika Sivo (27), Blake Ferguson (37) and Waqa Blake (29) all struggled against a resilient Bulldogs outfit.

However, with a tantalising match up with the Titans this week, you’ve been smoking way too much of the devil’s lettuce if you’re considering trading out on one poor performance. It was a relief for owners who forked out the big bucks for Ryan Matterson (62) to see him play the 80-minutes. He’ll forge a lethal combination with Moses as the season progresses.

SUPERCOACH TERMINOLOGY KEY

MPG = Minutes per game

PPG = Points per game

PPM= Points per minute

BPG = Base per game (point accrued in tackles + runs + missed tackles)

POD = Point of difference

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