Squad Breakdown: Analysing the Round 17 teams

2020 NRL SuperCoach runner-up Tim Williams analyses every squad dropped on team list Tuesday.


The second major bye round of the season has finally arrived, and the only good news is that we can put it behind us very shortly to focus on the run home.

Fewer trades, less planning… It’ll be far simpler times, how nice!

The Round 16 injury to Campbell Graham is a huge blow for his owners (including yours truly), while Ryan Papenhuyzen went from a possible short-term avoid to a must-have in the space of seven minutes against Manly.

Fortunately, Nicho Hynes missed Origin selection and is expected to be available for us this week, leaving SuperCoaches with a tough captaincy decision in the opening game up against Lil Papy.

Embed from Getty Images

The Cooma Stallions had another slightly underwhelming week, but nothing too troubling, with 1,162 points leading to another small drop into 261st overall.

While the Graham injury hurts, I should have 13 for Round 17 which is a solid number.

At a guess, I’d say the average will be 10-12 players, Adam Driussi’s true player ownership article will give us the exact number carried by each side.

I have 13 trades left leading into this week and will be using my second last boost to total four trades.

I have huge depth in my squad, and Cam Munster (provided I trade this week) and Harry Grant are the only two players I want post Round 17 that I consider to be must-haves.

Let’s take a look at the Round 17 teams, with squads courtesy of ESPN.

Embed from Getty Images


Thursday, 7.50pm, PointsBet Stadium, Cronulla

Sharks: 1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Connor Tracey 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Matt Moylan 7. Nicho Hynes 8. Toby Rudolf 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Royce Hunt 11. Briton Nikora 12. Wade Graham 13. Dale Finucane

Bench: 14. Aiden Tolman 15. Cameron McInnes 16. Teig Wilton 17. Andrew Fifita

Reserves: 18. Braydon Trindall 19. Jesse Colquhoun 20. Kade Dykes 21. Braden Hamlin-Uele 22. Lachlan Miller

Analysis: Cronulla are extremely relevant with one of the best runs home in the competition.

They face an understrength Melbourne this week, then the Cowboys two days after the Origin decider meaning they’ll be likely to be missing players.

Their head-to-head finals run includes the Dragons, Tigers, Sea Eagles and Bulldogs.

Ronaldo Mulitalo remains a terrific buy, while opposite winger Sione Katoa is a serious POD at just 2% ownership despite averaging over 60 points per game.

Need extra cash to help buy a new car or take your business to the next level? Whatever the goal, Pat and George from Mortgage choice are here to help you know your numbers.  Give them a call on (02) 9521 1611 or scan the QR Code below. Mention ‘SC PLAYBOOK’ for your FREE numbers consult. 

Being stuck outside glue hands Ramien isn’t ideal, but he scores plenty of tries off cut balls from Nicho Hynes.

He looks the ideal player to have as a fifth CTW to play based on match up on the run home, which with their draw will be most weeks.

Cam McInnes reverted to the bench on game day last week, playing just 41 minutes. Owners will be praying it’s not the norm, if so, he’ll be a sell next week.

I wouldn’t be buying. He did get through 48 in base in that time which is pretty immense.

My plan hasn’t changed, I’ll be holding Siosifa Talakai for the season.

Embed from Getty Images

Storm: 1. Ryan Papenhuyzen 2. Dean Ieremia 3. Marion Seve 4. Justin Olam 5. Grant Anderson 6. Nick Meaney 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Brandon Smith 10. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 11. Chris Lewis 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Josh King

Bench: 14. Tyran Wishart 15. Tui Kamikamica 16. Alec MacDonald 17. Jordan Grant

Reserves: 18. Bronson Garlick 19. Young Tonumaipea 20. Jack Howarth 21. Jayden Nikorima 22. Tyson Smoothy

Analysis: Ryan Papenhuyzen looms as a must-have, finding the cash to bring him in will be the issue though at $931k.

Oh, how different it could have been for non-owners had Manly not fallen asleep with seven minutes to play where Papy put on a tonne…

He’s someone you’ll want for the run home, and with five centuries in 10 games he may not get any cheaper.

A few are looking to Nelson Asofa-Solomona as a cash grab and Round 17 options, presumably with a plan to move on shortly after this week.

SC Playbook has officially launched Stat HQ! Our very own NRL SuperCoach data centre, with a stack of statistics and tools to help you with your weekly trades and plans. CHECK IT OUT HERE

He’s $385k with a breakeven of 10, so I see the merit. He’s actually scored reasonably well outside of the three weeks prior to this where he was injured, missed a month, then returned in limited time.

Not the worst, but he’s never really been SuperCoach relevant, so I’ll avoid.

Jahrome Hughes remains an outstanding POD play for the run home for anyone that can squeeze him into their halfback position.

Grant Anderson has been named. For now, please hold that spot for one more week old mate, then do what you like. Hopefully it stays that way, but there’s still a chance he could drop out if Jayden Nikorima comes in at 5/8, with Nick Meaney shifting to the wing.

Harry Grant should be sub $600k shortly after Origin, make a plan to get him back in, likely Round 19.

Embed from Getty Images


Friday, 7.55pm, McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle

Knights: 1. Tex Hoy 2. Edrick Lee 3. Enari Tuala 4. Bradman Best 5. Dominic Young 6. Anthony Milford 7. Adam Clune 8. David Klemmer 9. Chris Randall 10. Daniel Saifiti 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Mitchell Barnett 13. Kurt Mann

Bench: 14. Jayden Brailey 15. Jacob Saifiti 16. Leo Thompson 17. Mathew Croker

Interchange: 18. Simi Sasagi 19. Pasami Saulo 20. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 21. Hymel Hunt 22. Jake Clifford

Analysis: Despite a strong win over the Titans, nobody at Newcastle excites me too much.

Edrick Lee is a potential cash grab off the back of his five tries and 172 points to leave him with a breakeven of -59!

However, after a $118k price rise he’s now priced at $483k, he already has three scores under 22 this season. It does help that South Sydney are depleted this week.

If you’re short on money I can semi understand the play as a cash grab and Round 17 play, but anyone with decent enough squad value need not worry too much.

Mitch Barnett played a very encouraging 78 minutes in the win, but only managed 46 points. He did however have 48 in base which is strong.

At $479k he’s tempting, especially with the chance of taking up the goal-kicking duties after Tex Hoy’s horror show. Anthony Milford took over in that clash so he’s more likely to kick if Hoy is relieved of the duties.

My concern for Barnett is the stack of depth in the forward pack, which is at full strength, so how assured of minutes is he?

He could very easily revert to 40-50 minutes as we’ve seen with Adam O’Brien in the past, and the fact he’s leaving the club next year won’t help.

David Klemmer is as reliable as they come for anyone after a front-rower, I prefer FRFs with higher upside though. With Daniel Saifiti back it may impact his minutes.

Jayden Brailey’s return is really unfortunate timing for anyone who held Chris Randall.

Embed from Getty Images

Rabbitohs: 1. Latrell Mitchell 2. Alex Johnston 3. Taane Milne 4. Isaiah Tass 5. Jaxson Paulo 6. Cody Walker 7. Lachlan Ilias 8. Tevita Tatola 9. Siliva Havili 10. Thomas Burgess 11. Keaon Koloamatangi 12. Jed Cartwright 13. Mark Nicholls

Bench: 14. Kodi Nikorima 15. Blake Taaffe 16. Michael Chee Kam 17. Davvy Moale

Reserves: 18. Daniel Suluka-Fifita 19. Ben Lovett 20. Richard Kennar 21. Shaq Mitchell 22. Dean Hawkins

Analysis: Players out all over the place at South Sydney, including Campbell Graham, bugger!

The good news though is Isaiah Tass’s job security is strengthened significantly. He’s $314k with a breakeven of 12 and should make a bit more with the 71 in his rolling average a few more weeks.

Latrell Mitchell looms as a super POD play, owed by 0% of the top 100,000 ranked SuperCoaches, having banged out 99 on return from injury.

For me it’s him or Papy, so I’ll be going the latter. Some are selling Tedesco for him which seems pretty crazy to me, but I see they ploy.

Some may be in a position to own Papy and Latrell. South Sydney are shot for numbers this week, so the Knights match up may not be as good as it looks.

FOLLOW EXCLUSIVE SC PLAYBOOK MARKETS! The crew at Topsport are offering markets picked out by our team of experts, with added value on top every single round. Check them out, and use the code ‘SCPLAYBOOK’ when signing up.

While I know there’s talk of him being ‘fixture proof’, I’m more concerned that the Rabbitohs have been underwhelming this season, so when he’s put big scores on strong opposition in the past it’s been in a rampant Bunnies team.

If they don’t improve, they could get a few scores put on them by good sides, drastically limiting Latrell’s potential output.

The run home after this week is very tough against the Bulldogs, Storm, Sharks, Warriors, Eels, Panthers, Cowboys and Roosters. Scary…

That draw turns me off Alex Johnston at just under $700k, but the fact he’s owned by just 12% of the top 100, 6% of the top 1,000 and 4% of the top 10,000 gets me excited.

I don’t think I’ll pay up, but he’d be a nice player to own with a huge ceiling, I do think it’d be relying a little on the Rabbitohs to turn a corner though.

Keaon Koloamatangi doesn’t need much elaboration, he’s $504k, averaging 61 points. He’s a solid bye round number that relies a little on attacking stats, but his base has been solid of late.

No Trent Peoples anywhere despite the depleted pack, a huge blow for those who still own.

Dual 2RF-CTW, Jed Cartwright has been named to start on the edge and looms as the perfect nuff at $205k.

Embed from Getty Images


Saturday, 7.35pm, Leichhardt Oval, Sydney

Tigers: 1. Daine Laurie 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Starford To’a 4. Adam Doueihi 5. Ken Maumalo 6. Luke Brooks 7. Jackson Hastings 8. James Tamou 9. Fa’amanu Brown 10. Zane Musgrove 11. Luke Garner 12. Kelma Tuilagi 13. Joe Ofahengaue

Bench: 14. Stefano Utoikamanu 15. Justin Matamua 16. Jacob Liddle 17. Fonua Pole

Reserves: 18. Austin Dias 19. Alex Seyfarth 20. Junior Tupou 21. Asu Kepaoa 22. Jock Madden

Analysis: Not a lot of interest at the Tigers, but a few cheapies have emerged.

Fonua Pole has been named again, and while job security isn’t great, he was strong on debut with 44 points, all in base.

For anyone looking to free up cash this week and bag 25-50 points and be happy to have a potential nuff as a result, he’s a decent option at $175k.

Debutant Justin Matamua is a second-rower, while hooker Jacob Liddle is also on the bench, and Stefano Utoikamanu is fresh back from injury, so it bodes well for Pole’s minutes.

I don’t mind Utoikamanu as an option to free up cash, although I think last week’s return from injury has probably come one week too late.

He’s $293k, at 0% ownership in the top 100-100,000 ranked SuperCoach teams having come back from injury.

Game time may be limited again this week, so he might only be good for 30 odd points.

But I do believe he’ll be a solid back up FRF option on the run home when required. While Pole might free up more coin, he could be a nightmare sitting as one of two bench FRF options if he loses his spot.

Utoikamanu also has upside which we saw in the back end of last year where he averaged 65 points for almost the final two months.

Joe Ofahengaue has flown incredibly well under the radar of late, boasting a five-round average of 74 points per game!

He’s a tick under $600k but is dual FRF-2RF playing big minutes. I won’t be going there, but it’s hard to knock his numbers in a well beaten side. He had 74 in base against the Warriors!

Embed from Getty Images

Eels: 1. Clinton Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Waqa Blake 4. Viliami Penisini 5. Bailey Simonsson 6. Dylan Brown 7. Mitchell Moses 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Marata Niukore 11. Shaun Lane 12. Isaiah Papali’i 13. Ryan Matterson

Bench: 14. Makahesi Makatoa 15. Tom Opacic 16. Oregon Kaufusi 17. Ky Rodwell

Reserves: 18. Nathan Brown 19. Jakob Arthur 20. Sean Russell 21. Wiremu Greig 22. Hayze Perham

Analysis: Ryan Matterson has been named to return from injury which is significant for both owners and non-owners.

While there’s still concern around his ribs, he’s one of very few genuine keeper options available this round, so I’m keen.

Dylan Brown and Mitch Moses remain strong options for anyone with a spot available in the halves.

Moses has the huge ceiling, whereas Brown has the reliable scoring with his great base.

With Parramatta’s extremely inconsistent form, Brown may just have put his head in front as the better buy.

Maika Sivo has shown in three games back how rocks and diamonds he can be. I still don’t mind him as a buy, he is the definition of a play on match up fifth CTW option.

While all the talk has centred around Isaiah Papali’i and Matterson, Shaun Lane has casually gone about his work in style with a season average of 63 points and a five-round average of 80 points per game!

He’s $613k and is incredibly owned by 0% of the top 100-10,000 ranked SuperCoach teams overall!

He’s played the full 80 minutes in the past five rounds, averaging 50 in base. With serious attacking upside, I’m tempted. Running off Dylan Brown is a great spot to be.

Embed from Getty Images


Sunday, 4.05pm, Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Broncos: 1. Tesi Niu 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Brenko Lee 5. Jordan Pereira 6. Ezra Mam 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Keenan Palasia 9. Billy Walters 10. Ryan James 11. Zac Hosking 12. Jordan Riki 13. Kobe Hetherington

Bench: 14. Cory Paix 15. Rhys Kennedy 16. Xavier Willison 17. Tyson Gamble

Reserves: 18. Delouise Hoeter 19. Jake Turpin 20. Deine Mariner 21. Tyrone Roberts 22. Logan Bayliss-Brow

Analysis: While Ezra Mam has likely peaked in price, overall players should be very tempted to hold as an extra number this week, before being sold off in a week or two. Head-to-head players can sell if required.

Not a lot else to speak of here, with Brisbane’s main SuperCoach contingent on Origin duties or injured.

Zac Hosking has been named to debut as a starting edge player and is an obvious nuff option.

Embed from Getty Images

Dragons: 1. Cody Ramsey 2. Mathew Feagai 3. Moses Suli 4. Zac Lomax 5. Mikaele Ravalawa 6. Talatau Amone 7. Jayden Sullivan 8. Jack de Belin 9. Andrew McCullough 10. Blake Lawrie 11. Jack Bird 12. Jaydn Su’A 13. Tariq Sims

Bench: 14. Moses Mbye 15. Francis Molo 16. Aaron Woods 17. Michael Molo

Reserves: 18. Jaiyden Hunt 19. Tautau Moga 20. Josh Kerr 21. Billy Burns 22. Jonathon Reuben

Analysis: I’m not keen on anyone at the Dragons, with the two only real relevant players being Zac Lomax and Moses Suli.

Both are putting together decent seasons, but I’m unconvinced with the Dragons attack to invest.

Lomax averaging 60 is a fair play for anyone wanting a bit of Red V in their life.

Leave a Reply