The teams have dropped for Round 19, and I’m not sure I can remember a more chaotic afternoon of announcements.
Teams are already running extremely thin on trades and depth, now we’ve seen a host of enormously popular players rested, suspended or injured.
In what was a mixed round of scoring across the board, the Cooma Stallions produced a strong score of 1,351, leading to a rise into 7th in the overall rankings.
A shout out to the Raiders fan base who have three of the top seven ranked sides now, including the leader ‘GreenBrickWall’ (surely a Raider).
While I’ll have a say on the popular players out of action this week, be very mindful that every single SuperCoach is facing different circumstances regarding trades, depth, head-to-head finals, overall race etc.
So take an open minded approach to my assessments and apply it to your situation, hopefully it can help!
Analysis: Based on what I saw from the Bulldogs last week I really like this match up for the Rabbitohs.
However, with a game against the Roosters next week I’d be hesitant to bring any in.
You wouldn’t think the Roosters will be resting any stars for the final round of the season leading into week one of finals.
Cody Walker and Damien Cook both have tremendous match ups and could go large.
The pair have 3RA’s of 88 and 74PPG respectively.
The Dogs concede the fourth most SuperCoach points to 5/8s this season.
South Sydney’s attack was relentless against the Tigers, capitalising at almost every opportunity they had in the opposition half.
The issue was the Tigers dug in and controlled field position for much of the second half, so opportunities were restricted.
Cam Murray continues to underwhelm without going too bad. He’s only played 59 minutes in two of the past three weeks and I fear an early shower awaits him if the Bunnies gain an early lead in this one.
Bulldogs: 1. Will Hopoate 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Reimis Smith 4. Tim Lafai 5. Jayden Okunbor 6. Jake Averillo 7. Lachlan Lewis 8. Aiden Tolman 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Luke Thompson 11. Josh Jackson 12. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 13. Chris Smith
Cowboys: 1. Valentine Holmes 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Murray Taulagi 4. Esan Marsters 5. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 6. Scott Drinkwater 7. Jake Clifford 8. Corey Jensen 9. Reuben Cotter 10. Jordan McLean 11. Gavin Cooper 12. Mitchell Dunn 13. Francis Molo
Bench: 14. Daejarn Asi 15. Emry Pere 16. Tom Gilbert 17. Ben Condon
Reserves: 18. Jason Taumalolo 19. Jake Granville 20. Ben Hampton 21. Peter Hola
Analysis: Jason Taumalolo has been named on the extended bench, while Josh McGuire is out with a suspension. Even if named to start I’m not tempted by JT as it’s just hard to see him playing big minutes with absolutely nothing on the line.
Panthers: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Josh Mansour 3. Brent Naden 4. Stephen Crichton 5. Brian To’o 6. Jarome Luai 7. Nathan Cleary 8. Moses Leota 9. Mitch Kenny 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Liam Martin 13. Isaah Yeo
Bench: 14. Tyrone May 15. Spencer Leniu 16. Kurt Capewell 17. Jack Hethrington
Reserves: 18. Dean Whare 19. Billy Burns 20. Matt Burton 21. Charlie Staines
Analysis: With games against the Cowboys and Bulldogs to come, Penrith players should be at the top of your hitlist.
Keep a VERY close eye on team news throughout the week as changes could drop thick and fast.
Check out the reserves named in two outside backs, a halfback and a back-rower. They are the exact four blokes you’d suspect would play ahead of Cleary/Luai, Mansour/Crichton, Yeo/JFH is Ivan Cleary does choose to rest players.
However, on the team named…
Everyone should own Nathan Cleary by now, he has four tons this year and nine scores over 88.
He is obviously a great VC or C option again, but there are plenty of decent players to pick from this week.
Josh Mansour is on a tear with a 5RA of 85PPG, while Brian To’o is ticking along very well with a 3RA of 80PPG.
Mansour had 21 runs and six tackle busts against the Eels, To’o had 19 and six, huge.
Leading into Round 18, Mansour was owned by 66% of the top 100 and 68% of the top 1000, To’o was 37% of each, so there’s still some small degree of POD value in them.
Stephen Crichton has hit the skids with a 3RA of 35PPG. While ordinary, I’d be holding and playing for the next two rounds.
Api Koroisau is out in a huge blow for the 24% of top 20,000 ranked coaches who own.
Despite two failed HIAs, Isaah Yeo played just 55 minutes for 42 points against Parra.
With a back-row log jam this is a worry, especially if he gets an even earlier shower should the score line blow out in the next two weeks.
Cleary will want to get minutes into Kurt Capewell before finals.
On that note, James Fisher-Harris is a pretty popular option, I’d be very wary as he played 77 minutes last week due to the HIAs and is a prime candidate for fewer minutes this week.
From Rounds 11-16 he didn’t have a score of 54 points.
Eels: 1. Clint Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Michael Jennings 4. Waqa Blake 5. Blake Ferguson 6. Jai Field 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Junior Paulo 11. Ryan Matterson 12. Shaun Lane 13. Nathan Brown
Bench: 14. Will Smith 15. Andrew Davey 16. Kane Evans 17. Oregon Kaufusi
Reserves: 18. Haze Dunster 19. Stefano Utoikamanu 20. George Jennings 21. Daniel Alvaro
Analysis: With games against the Broncos and Tigers to finish you can finally start your Eels players with some confidence.
Maika Sivo has been abysmal for owners with a 3RA of 33PPG. However, Parra should put a score on Brisbane so this could be the week he repays the faith. I’d be very tempted to play in my CTW if I owned.
Junior Paulo played 62 minutes against the Panthers in a very promising sign for owners following lingering back spasms.
He’s an option for anyone in the market for a front-rower this week with Payne Haas out, although you’d be pretty concerned Brad Arthur spells him early with a strong lead.
That being said, Parra are clinging onto a top four spot so the game would have to be comfortably won.
Mitch Moses is a HUGE play this week and is a great VC option.
Brisbane concede the most SuperCoach points to 5/8s and halfbacks.
Broncos: 1. Darius Boyd 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 5. Richard Kennar 6. Tyson Gamble 7. Tom Dearden 8. Joe Ofahengaue 9. Issac Luke 10. Ben Te’o 11. David Fifita 12. Alex Glenn 13. Pat Carrigan
Reserves: 18. Kobe Hethrington 19. Pride Petterson-Robati 20. Sean O’Sullivan 21. Jesse Arthars
Analysis: David Fifita and Kotoni Staggs both failed to capitalise on what appeared an easier match up for the Broncos against the Titans.
They should be strong considerations to leave out of 17s this week (for anyone with that luxury), before being injected back in for Round 20 against the Cowboys.
Payne Haas is out due to family reasons. He will leave the Broncos bubble and remains a chance to return next week at this stage, so if you can cover him than do your best.
Keep an eye on his availability for next week.
Plenty of SuperCoaches are running two nuffs at FRF on the bench, so it may be an option to only have one active FRF to utilise the vice-captain loophole, this is likely what I’ll be doing in order to try and save a trade for the final round.
It is good news for Pat Carrigan who surely plays 80 minutes after receiving reduced time last week.
Corey Oates shifted to the back-row throughout the game which made the decision to have a hooker and winger on the bench make plenty more sense.
Sea Eagles: 1. Tevita Funa 2. Albert Hopoate 3. Brad Parker 4. Morgan Harper 5. Abbas Miski 6. Lachlan Croker 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Danny Levi 10. Martin Taupau 11. Jack Gosiewski 12. Curtis Sironen 13. Jake Trbojevic
Bench: 14. Morgan Boyle 15. Corey Waddell 16. Sean Keppie 17. Taniela Paseka
Reserves: 18. Haumole Olakau’atu 19. Reuben Garrick 20. Ben Trbojevic 21. Tom Trbojevic
Analysis: DCE is on a tear! Admittedly, the Bulldogs gifted him a couple of the easiest try-assists you’re likely to see (salty non-owner here), but the man is in form.
With games against the Titans and Warriors to finish the year he’s a serious option with a 3RA of 82PPG.
There are obvious risks with the return of Tom Trbojevic who will steal plenty of his attacking ball, and Reuben Garrick who may take over the goal-kicking duties if he returns after being named on the extended bench.
But regardless, he looks a pretty strong buy.
Tommy Turbo has been named on an extended bench, but you’d think we should hopefully know by Thursday if he’s set to play or not.
If he does, do we jump on board? With Tedesco rested the option obviously becomes very viable.
Basically it comes entirely down to personal scenario regarding your head-to-head finals position, trades left, overall rank etc.
My take is that both the Sea Eagles and Freddy Fittler wouldn’t risk Tommy two weeks out if they weren’t confident his body was right to go.
With arguably the highest ceiling in SuperCoach the temptation is obvious and an enormous POD play, especially with Teddy playing the Rabbitohs next week which won’t be a walk in the park.
I’d be avoiding, but if you need to jump ranks quick or look dead in your head-to-head match up he’s the man for the job.
Addin Fonua-Blake was injured with 12 minutes to play against the Dogs, however he’s very surprisingly been named to start this week.
It’d be huge for an owners with Haas and SST already out of action. I certainly wouldn’t be buying though with the injury risk.
Morgan Harper has back-to-back scores of 101 and 75 and is an option if you’re strapped for cash and need a number.
However in a similar price bracket I’d lean towards Sivo due to his huge upside and opposition.
Titans: 1. AJ Brimson 2. Anthony Don 3. Treymain Spry 4. Young Tonumaipea 5. Corey Thompson 6. Ash Taylor 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Jarrod Wallace 9. Mitch Rein 10. Mo Fotuaika 11. Kevin Proctor 12. Sam Stone 13. Tyrone Peachey
Bench: 14. Tanah Boyd 15. Jai Arrow 16 Sam Lisone 17. Jai Whitbread
Reserves: 18. Darius Farmer 19. Brian Kelly 20. Toby Sexton 21. Nathan Peats
Analysis: AJ Brimson finally had a down week of 30 points after a huge run of form. Manly are conceding plenty of late so he’s still a strong play this week.
Manly are conceding the third most SuperCoach points to fullbacks.
Mo Fotuaika is scoring consistently with a 3RA of 69PPG in very big minutes. He’s a massive option for those looking to offload Haas and is arguably the pick of the crop.
Reserves: 18. Brandon Smith 19. Isaac Lumelume 20. Max King 21. Paul Momirovski
Analysis: No need to add anything on Cam Munster and Smith who remain must-haves with both looking like excellent POD captaincy choices this week.
I particularly like Munster with the Tigers edge looking extremely fragile of late.
Put a line through any Tedesco to Ryan Papenhuyzen plans after the Storm fullback missed the team sheet again.
Tino Fa’asuamaleaui looked a decent option with just 4% ownership in the top 100 ranked teams and 1% in the top 1000, but he’s been moved to the bench where he’s no longer an option.
He has a 3RA of 79PPG leading into this game.
Tigers: 1. Adam Doueihi 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Joey Leilua 4. Chris Lawrence 5. Asu Kepaoa 6. Josh Reynolds 7. Benji Marshall 8. Josh Aloiai 9. Harry Grant 10. Thomas Mikaele 11. Sam McIntyre 12. Luciano Leilua 13. Alex Twal
Bench: 14. Zane Musgrove 15. Matt Eisenhuth 16. Russell Packer 17. Luke Garner
Reserves: 18. Tommy Talau 19. Michael Chee-Kam 20. Jock Madden 21. Jacob Liddle
Analysis: With games against the Storm and Eels to finish the year you don’t really want to own any Tigers other than David Nofoaluma.
Even then, I was personally looking to bench him this week until Kurt Mann was ruled out due to suspension.
I think it’s a really strong anti-POD play this week.
Melbourne concede the least SuperCoach points to CTWs in the competition.
Nofa will also be up against the edge of Justin Olam, Josh Addo-Carr, Kenny Browich and Munster which has been rock solid all year.
Harry Grant has back-to-back scores of 75 and 74 in the past fortnight in 80MPG to reinforce his SuperCoach credentials leading into 2021.
Let’s hope the inclusion of Zane Musgrove doesn’t kill off any VC loophole plans as a huge auto-emergency risk.
Roosters: 1. Joseph Manu 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Josh Morris 4. Mitchell Aubusson 5. Brett Morris 6. Luke Keary 7. Kyle Flanagan 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Jake Friend 10. Lindsay Collins 11. Boyd Cordner 12. Sitili Tupouniua 13. Isaac Liu
Bench: 14. Freddy Lussick 15. Angus Crichton 16. Nat Butcher 17. Sonny Bill Williams
Reserves: 18. Poasa Faamausili 19. Drew Hutchinson 20. Daniel Fifita 21. Matt Ikuvalu
Analysis: The Roosters have semi tough match ups to end the regular season with games against the Sharks and Rabbitohs.
They’ve been building all season and are beginning to peak as they always do, putting a masterclass on a weakened Knights outfit last week.
James Tedesco is out which is brutal for people running low on depth and trades.
With Turbo a chance at returning and a nice fortnight ahead, he’s a tempting option to trade with Teddy having a fairly tough game against the Rabbitohs next week.
It’s purely circumstantial and the decision to hold or trade is different for everyone, so I’ll leave it up to you.
Siosiua Taukeiaho has also been rested and is fine to trade if you’re in a position to do so.
For those running SST and Haas, wait a few days to get word on whether Haas is expected back next round to determine who you trade.
Without getting into extreme detail, B.Moz, Daniel Tupou and Luke Keary are huge POD plays but present significant risk. Although Tupou does have a very good base for a winger of 33BPG.
We all know how big and how low they can go, so roll the dice if you dare.
Penrith and Newcastle both put 38 points on the Sharks in the past month.
Angus Crichton reminded us of his SuperCoach credentials with 84 points in 69 minutes across the middle and edge.
It was largely in base with 40 tackles, 18 runs and 7 tackle breaks.
Unfortunately he’s been named on the bench, but keep an eye on news throughout the week. Unfortunately the Roosters play late in the round so it’ll be hard to grab him late as a POD if named to start.
You’d think Trent Robinson would be looking to try get an 80 minute game into him leading into finals, although the log jam of forwards does pose a question mark. Mitch Aubusson being named at centre will help.
There’s no doubt Boyd Cordner’s 26 minute stint impacted Crichton’s minutes, so how many will he get this week even if starting?
There’s a few too many question marks there…
Sharks: 1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Josh Dugan 4. Jesse Ramien 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Connor Tracey 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Braden Hamlin-Uele 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Aaron Woods 11. Briton Nikora 12. Siosifa Talakai 13. Toby Rudolf
Bench: 14. Teig Wilton 15. Jack Williams 16. Andrew Fifita 17. Royce Hunt
Reserves: 18. Scott Sorensen 19. Bryson Goodwin 20. Braydon Trindall 21. Billy Magoulias
Analysis: Shaun Johnson returned from injury with a decent 56 points. Whenever he returns from these hamstring/groin injuries he looks to tentatively put his running game away.
I’d be selling with games against the Roosters and Raiders to end the year, ditto to any Ramien, Mulitalo, Katoa and Talakai owners.
Raiders: 1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2. Semi Valemei 3. Jarrod Croker 4. Jordan Rapana 5. Nick Cotric 6. Jack Wighton 7. George Williams 8. Josh Papalii 9. Siliva Havili 10. Dunamis Lui 11. John Bateman 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Joe Tapine
Bench: 14. Tom Starling 15. Ryan Sutton 16. Hudson Young 17. Corey Harawira-Naera
Reserves: 18. Sam Williams 19. Matt Frawley 20. Matt Timoko 21. Sia Soliola
Analysis: Jack Wighton and George Williams starred against the Dragons with 102 and 98 points respectively.
Wighton’s NRL form is finally beginning to translate to SuperCoach scoring with a 3RA of 80PPG.
With decent games against the Warriors and Sharks to end the year he’s a decent POD, however with the likes of Munster and Cleary in the halves I’d be looking elsewhere to spend my final few trades.
John Bateman however remains a great trade in option. He scored 87 against the Dragons with a try, and there’s every reason to believe the attacking stats can continue to fall in the next fortnight.
Having missed a huge chunk of the year he hopefully won’t be given much rest if the score line blows out.
Fears were confirmed with Josh Papalii who failed to return to the field after his opening 35 minute stint.
Ricky Stuart rested him with the score blowing out, and you can bet this will continue to happen in the next two weeks if it occurs again.
The one positive is that Canberra remain in the hunt for a top four spot, so if they’re involved in tight matches he should see good time.
With the risk of being rested a real issue I traded to Addin Fonua-Blake last week which turned out to be very counterproductive after he was injured for Manly.
Warriors: 1. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 2. Adam Pompeye 3. Adam Keighran 4. Peta Hiku 5. Hayze Perham 6. Kodi Nikorima 7. Chanel Harris-Tavita 8. Lachlan Burr 9. Karl Lawton 10. Isaiah Papali’i 11. Jack Murchie 12. Tohu Harris 13. Jazz Tevaga
Bench: 14. Wayde Egan 15. Adam Blair 16. Eliesa Katoa 17. Tom Ale
Analysis: Kalyn Ponga returns for a great match up this week. The Dragons looked second rate in defence against the Raiders last week, so I’m optimistic a fresh and firing Ponga can go large on them.
Mason Lino has been dropped in favour of Tex Hoy, which is great news for Ponga who likely regains the goal-kicking duties, massive!
With that added, and Tedesco out ahead of a tough match with the Rabbitohs, I’d trade the Rooster before the Knight.
Kurt Mann misses out due to suspension which is a huge blow for the 54% of top 100 ranked players who own him and 44% of top 1000 ranked.
If you can cover him this week I’d suggest holding as he comes up against the Titans next week and could finish with a bang.
David Klemmer has a 3RA of 57PPG, and his minutes dipped slightly to 58 with Daniel Saifiti back.
If the Knights get out to a decent lead I suspect he’ll be given a very early shower.
Dragons: 1. Matt Dufty 2. Jordan Pereira 3. Euan Aitken 4. Zac Lomax 5. Cody Ramsey 6. Corey Norman 7. Adam Clune 8. Kaide Ellis 9. Ben Hunt 10. Paul Vaughan 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Jackson Ford 13. Cameron McInnes
Analysis: While not a major concern, Cam McInnes played a reduced 72 minutes against Canberra.
After a season where he’s hardly missed a moment he could be in line for greater rests with the Dragons now unable to make the eight, so if you’re stacked and are looking to sit a gun he may be an option.
Although with the team lists named this would be highly unlikely to be an option.
My constant death riding of Zac Lomax finally came off against the Raiders where he scored just 10 points.
It was an off day where nothing went his way. I wouldn’t let it scare me off as an owner for this week, but if you are loaded with guns at CTW he remains an anti-POD option if you want to sell.
Leading into Round 18 he was owned by 94% of the top 100 ranked teams and 91% of the top 100.
With games against the Knights and Storm to come I would highly recommend not trading in Cody Ramsey unless you are seriously desperate for a dirt cheap 4th CTW.