Sit v start: Who to play in your final 17, Rd 8?

We rank the fringe 17 players in your NRL SuperCoach squad to help you decide who to sit and start in your weekly team.


I’ve changed it up a bit this week by adding a few key stats in brackets for each player. 

These include the opponents, home/away, base + power average (hit-ups + tackles + offloads + tackle breaks) and the matchup ranking (based on points conceded to players in the same SC position, 1st being the best and 16th being the worst). 

I’ve also included average minutes for players, where relevant.

Thanks as always to the legendary, whose website I’ve utilised for position vs team analysis and various stats breakdowns.

Here are my thoughts for this week, with plays listed in priority order. 

A general note as always to keep an eye on the weather leading into the round and across the weekend. For rain affected matches I’d slightly favour forwards over backs.

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1.    Xavier Coates (away vs Knights, B+P Ave 23, matchup ranking 2nd)

Showed his upside last week and gets another favourable matchup, this time vs the Knights. Storm are a fantastic to watch with the ball at the moment, so lock Xavier into your starting CTW if you own and enjoy the show!

2.    Jackson Hastings (away vs Dragons, B+P Ave 37, matchup ranking 6th)

The giant killer! Notched 54 without any attacking stats against Souths last week. He’s shown he’s prepared to back himself, so hopefully that correlates to more attacking points against favourable opposition. 

3.    Joseph Suaali (away vs Bulldogs, B+P Ave 31, matchup ranking 8th)

Registered his first attacking stat of the season last week. There could be plenty more to come for the young gun on the right outside Joey Manu. Looks to be getting through his share of carries and seems to have put on a bit of size. Nice matchup vs the Dogs, so I say play him and see what he can do. 

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4.    Brad Schneider (neutral ground vs Warriors, B+P Ave 35, matchup ranking 11th)

Lowest score of the season last week for Schneider, which is understandable given the scoreline. I’ve mentioned before how suited his game is to SC. He can fill every column in the stat sheet. Hopefully last week hasn’t overly impacted his confidence.  

5.    Heilum Luki (neutral ground vs Eels, B+P Ave 44, Mins Ave 45, matchup ranking 12th)

Looks a weapon whenever given the opportunity. If he can somehow avoid a late team reshuffle and play 80 minutes, he could be an SC gun. I think it’s likely as simple as play him if he starts, sit him if not. 

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6.    Reuben Cotter (neutral ground vs Eels, B+P Ave 51, matchup ranking 12th)

SC output was down a bit last week. I think he’s still a play in most 17’s due to the high floor. Hopefully more work for him to get through in the middle vs the Eels. 

7.    Tolutau Koula (neutral ground vs Rabbitohs, B+P Ave 22, Mins Ave 41, matchup ranking 5th)

I think Koula will become a reliable play in 17’s, due to his high work rate. He surely has attacking upside to go with it, on account of his blistering speed. Matchup vs Souths is better than it first looks. Will be interesting to which edges Campbell Graham and Isaiah Tass line up on for Souths. I’d favour the latter for Koula’s scoring prospects. 

8.    Will Penisini (neutral ground vs Cowboys, B+P Ave 42, matchup ranking 12th)

Has ticked along nicely all season, without registering a massive score. IPap commands most of the ball on that edge, but it seems Penisini can be played reliably on any given week. 

9.    Josh King (away vs Knights, B+P Ave 49, Mins Ave 65, matchup ranking 3rd)

Continuing to register big minutes, providing him with a high floor. He may nab an attacking stat this week, with a favourable matchup against his old Club.

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10. Blake Taaffe (neutral ground vs Sea Eagles, B+P Ave 14, Mins Ave 57, matchup ranking 3rd)

A risk / reward proposition due to a relatively low floor. Don’t mind him as a speculative pick, as the matchup vs the Sea Eagles is better than it first looks. Bunnies could be on for a bounce back. 

11. Jeremiah Nanai (neutral ground vs Eels, B+P Ave 38, matchup ranking 12th)

Incredible try scoring record this season, with 6 in 7 games. Amazingly they’ve all been off kicks. Unfortunately, this isn’t the best for SC, as there are no resulting line break points. Nanai also registers a lot of negative SC stats, which is impacting his floor. Therefore, he’s a way down the list for me. 

12. Kelma Tuilagi (away vs Dragons, B+P Ave 38, matchup ranking 3rd)

IF Kelma can get an extended run on the park he could be an excellent scorer. Has been battling persistent injury niggles though, making it more of a gamble to play him. 

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13. Beau Fermor (home vs Panthers, B+P Ave 44, matchup ranking 16th)

Tough to see any attacking stats v Panthers but imagine he’ll still be solid for 40 to 50 score.

14. Max King (home vs Roosters, B+P Ave 48, Mins Ave 37, matchup ranking 13th)

Still registering incredible output in limited minutes. Only reason he’s down the list for me is the reduced ceiling, due to the minutes.

15. Chris Randall (home vs Storm, B+P Ave 46, matchup ranking 16th)

Tough to play him vs the Storm. However, Randall could get through plenty of tackles, so could be started if you’re desperate. 

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16. Lachlan Ilias (home vs Sea Eagles, B+P Ave 19, matchup ranking 8th)

Game doesn’t seem suited to SC, as I’ve written before. Matchup vs Manly is better than it seems, so another who can be played if desperate. 

17. Selwyn Cobbo (home vs Sharks, B+P Ave 28, matchup ranking 16th)

His best SC score of the season last week (82). Talent in spades, but worst possible matchup vs the Sharks. 


18. Brodie Jones (home vs Storm, B+P Ave 41, matchup ranking 14th)

I see no reason to risk playing him this week with the Storm matchup and the injury niggle.

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