Goal-kicking analysis: Who takes the tee at every club?

The SC Spy takes a look at who will be given the all-important goal-kicking duties at each NRL club, and their back ups.

Key Analysis NRL Pre Season

G’day Troops,

As we know, whoever goal-kicks (especially at the top clubs) gets a serious Supercoach boost.

I’ve tried to dissect the candidates at each club below. Any insight welcomed is always for anyone with a new insight!

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Brisbane Broncos

Easy one right here!

Adam Reynolds – Career 82% goalkicker. One of the greats (which makes last year’s GF that much harder for Souths Fans).

Herbie Farnworth – 14/16 in his career and a former EPL Football prodigy. A gun. Perfect backup.

Kotoni Staggs – May well back up Reynolds if Herbie is not playing/doesn’t want to kick. Struck them at 78% last time he took the duties, so he hits them okay. Only SC relevant if Reynolds doesn’t play.

Canberra Raiders

Brad Schneider – Jarrod Croker would be the man, but will he get selected?

With young centre talent around and Jarrod’s body ageing he may be forced to spend time in reserves which would open it up to Fogarty to take the tee. Croker will kick if he plays.

Jordan Rapana – May be an option if the above two are not on the paddock at any stage.

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs

Matt Burton – Took the duties during Monday’s trial and that suggests he will kick during the season. A huge boost to his SC value. Keep an eye on him as the Dogs manage a few early tough games before looking to potentially swoop.

Jake Averillo – The young fella is nearly at 80% for his career. He has to be close to the duties if Burton’s radar is off.

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Cronulla Sharks

Nicho Hynes – Kicked during this week’s trial, again suggesting he will take the tee. He kicked at 75% last year so he’s not a lock but I think he improves. Don’t bank on him though as a certainty to kick long-term. Read Trindall below.

Braydon Trindall – Nudged them at 81% last season but is suspended to begin the year and may play off the bench. He has to be a candidate if he is in the halves with Hynes and will back him up if injured as you would expect him to start in this instance and kick.

Gold Coast Titans

Toby Sexton – I’d expect the young fella to take the duties which adds to his SC appeal. 80% in 2021.

Patrick Herbert – Unsure here, but possibly Herbert to back up Sexton. Not SC relevant.

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Manly Sea Eagles

Reuben Garrick – Was outstanding last year at 82%. Add in his tries and we see why he averaged what he did.

Daly Cherry-Evans Would expect him to backup Garrick in the event of injury.

Melbourne Storm

Ryan Papenhuyzen – Couldn’t miss last year at 86%. Please be healthy Papi!

This gets tricky if Papi is out. Nick Meaney may play FB if Papi is out and therefore would kick. Otherwise I hope Munster has been practicing or it could be a left field option we don’t know about!

New Zealand Warriors

This is really hard to say and is of vital SC importance! Shaun Johnson will kick round 1, but when Reece Walsh returns does he steal the duties?

SJ will no doubt want to minimise impact on his body (groins etc) but I can tell you when you have kicked all your career it may be hard to give it up.

For what it’s worth, SJ’s last three healthy seasons have seen him hit them at 76% each year (90% last year in 20 attempts), while Walsh kicked at 70% in his debut season.

I would punt on SJ to keep the duties at least to begin the year, but I’m really not sure! If anyone has any insight, feel free to share.

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Newcastle Knights

Jake Clifford – He kicked during the trial but has a 67% career record. He must improve if the Knights want to maximise their chances.

It makes me think one of the below two guys could be on the cusp and be an option as the season goes on if Clifford can’t find his radar.

Mitch Barnett / Kalyn Ponga – I think Barnett is the backup and may even become the first-choice option, whilst we know Ponga can kick but lost his radar after his 2019 season of nearly 83% before dropping to 65% and 71%.

Barnett kicked at 81% last season in limited attempts. I actually think he is the pick of the three unless Ponga can fix his technique. The other issue is that Barnett is every chance at playing off the bench, so even if chosen when on, someone would need to deputise while off the paddock.

North Queensland Cowboys

Valentine Holmes will kick with Kyle Feldt or Chad Townsend the likely backup.

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Parramatta Eels

Mitch Moses – First choice and locked in barring injury.

Clint Gutherson – An outstanding backup, but sadly likely won’t kick in the early rounds. Still a good SC option if Papi is out Round 1.

Penrith Panthers

Nathan Cleary – LOCKED IN when healthy.

Stephen Crichton – The likely backup if Cleary is ruled out in the early rounds.

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South Sydney Rabbitohs

Latrell Mitchell – Such big SC appeal when he returns to the fold. Kicked at 76% during the Roosters premierships. Can improve.

Blake Taaffe / Lachlan Ilias – Taafe should kick to start the season, but if he reverts to a bench role perhaps Ilias bcomes the backup?

I don’t have numbers on this pair so it is a little speculative as they look short of options. Assume it’s Latrell, and then if he is out Taaffe plays FB and kicks. I’d wager a punt that Cam Murray can also slot them! What a man.

St George Illawarra Dragons

Zac Lomax – Great goal-kicker. He will be the main man.

Sloane / Amone / Hunt – Potential backups? Unsure who they would go with, it might be a lottery.

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Sydney Roosters

Sam Walker – The talk out of camp is that he may kick. Hello!

It’s far from assured however and could depend on the line-up as contenders include Adam Keighran and Paul Momirovski if named.

Tedesco tried last year and struggled but could obviously improve with practice. Taukeiaho is also very good. Round 1 teams should help, but it’s hard to say at this stage.

West Tigers

Jackson Hastings v Luke Brooks – I think it should be Hastings (83% with The Chooks in his early days) but it hasn’t really been confirmed yet.

Brooks is 7 from 9 in his career which is a good start in a limited sample. He also took the tee in the trial which is also a strong indicator the club may have him edging ahead for now.

Again it’s tough to say unless we get some confirmation prior to kick-off and it’s an important question for prospective Hastings Owners.

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