Squad Breakdown: Analysing the Round 21 teams

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


Head-to-head finals have arrived, with minor premierships handed out, along with wooden spoons and everything in between.

Hopefully your side scraped into the eight to keep yourself in contention for head-to-head glory.

The Cooma Stallions had a really disappointing week scoring just 1,062 points, dropping significantly to 543rd position overall.

It was a funny week where a stack of my players were very middling, with scores around 40-50 points, along with Nathan Cleary’s 4, and I missed out on a few of the higher scoring players.

Injuries and suspensions are stacking up hard *unsurprisingly*, so I’m hoping my long-term depth strategy can see the boys make a charge towards the top 100 on the run home.

If sides keep getting decimated which is every chance, the run home will be blown wide open, and those lacking trades and depth will plummet. Interesting times…

Let’s take a look at Round 21, the opening week of head-to-head finals, with a focus on the question everyone is asking, who replaces Cleary? Squads courtesy of Fox Sports.

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Thursday, 7.50pm, SCG, Sydney

Roosters: 1. James Tedesco 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Paul Momirovski 4. Joseph Manu 5. Joseph Suaalii 6. Luke Keary 7. Sam Walker 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Sam Verrills 10. Matthew Lodge 11. Angus Crichton 12. Nat Butcher 13. Victor Radley 14. Connor Watson 15. Ben Thomas 16. Drew Hutchison 17. Terrell May 18. Adam Keighran 19. Fletcher Baker 20. Kevin Naiqama 21. Renouf Atoni 22. Siua Wong

Analysis: The Roosters have plenty of SuperCoach relevant options, but a tough draw against the Broncos, Cowboys, Tigers, Storm and Rabbitohs.

Tedesco remains a must-have, while Joey Manu continues to deliver big score after big score.

While some may look to sell Angus Crichton after his 44, I have no intention of selling, surely moving him on is a huge luxury at this time of season?

Sam Walker is a huge POD option for Cleary, boasting a three-round average of 95, including a monster 138 against the Dragons.

While I love what he’s showing as the now dominant playmaker at the Roosters, I’d be wary of the run ahead of him.

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Broncos: 1. Tesi Niu 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Deine Mariner 5. Selwyn Cobbo 6. Ezra Mam 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Thomas Flegler 9. Billy Walters 10. Payne Haas 11. Kurt Capewell 12. Jordan Riki 13. Kobe Hetherington 14. Jake Turpin 15. Rhys Kennedy 16. Corey Jensen 17. Keenan Palasia 18. Te Maire Martin 19. Zac Hosking 20. Xavier Willison 21. Delouise Hoeter 22. Cory Paix

Analysis: There’s surprisingly not a heap of SuperCoach relevance at the Broncos despite their great season.

Payne Haas played 70 minutes for just 59 points in the loss to the Tigers, while a solid pick up still, that showed he’s far from a must with other players such as Joe Tapine going large week after week.

With a three-round average of 77, some are looking towards Adam Reynolds this week with a reasonable run home.

He’s played one of the best seasons of his career and is still averaging only 65 points per game, I just think there are better options available, not to mention his injury history which has to come into contention at this stage of the SuperCoach season.

Selwyn Cobbo returns for those who very patiently held.

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Friday, 6pm, AAMI Park, Melbourne

Storm: 1. Tyran Wishart 2. David Nofoaluma 3. Marion Seve 4. Grant Anderson 5. Dean Ieremia 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Harry Grant 10. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Josh King 14. Brandon Smith 15. Tui Kamikamica 16. Tom Eisenhuth 17. Chris Lewis 18. Alec MacDonald 19. Cooper Johns 20. Xavier Coates 21. Jordan Grant 22. Young Tonumaipea

Analysis: Melbourne get a truly enticing match up this week against the Titans who were deplorable against the Raiders.

Do note though that after this the Storm face the Panthers, Broncos, Roosters and Eels.

As such, if you can suffer through this clash, it may be worth looking away from Cam Munster and Harry Grant as anti-POD plays with that draw.

However, with Melbourne playing for a top four spot I’d still be happy to recruit both players.

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Munster is a huge captaincy option this week, especially if kicking goals which is a big chance.

If you’re willing to overlook the draw, Jahrome Hughes is another great candidate to replace Cleary at halfback.

He hasn’t scored under 53 since Round 6, and his lowest score all year is 44. He has three tonnes to his name this season.

At 8% ownership in the top 100 through to top 5,000, he’s a good play.

David Nofoaluma debuts and is a monster POD, but the tough draw and Melbourne’s form is off putting.

Brandon Smith returns off the bench, while Grant Anderson not only held his spot, but has been moved to centre.

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Titans: 1. Jayden Campbell 2. Sosefo Fifita 3. Phillip Sami 4. Brian Kelly 5. Patrick Herbert 6. AJ Brimson 7. Tanah Boyd 8. Moeaki Fotuaika 9. Aaron Booth 10. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui 11. David Fifita 12. Beau Fermor 13. Erin Clark 14. Greg Marzhew 15. Herman Ese’ese 16. Isaac Liu 17. Jaimin Jolliffe 18. Sam McIntyre 19. Corey Thompson 20. Toby Sexton 21. Alofiana Khan-Pereira 22. Paul Turner

Analysis: No interest here, David Fifita is a hold, but anyone who has gone the anti-POD route to this point with him would be happy.

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Friday, 7.55pm, 4 Pines Park, Sydney

Sea Eagles: 1. Reuben Garrick 2. Jason Saab 3. Morgan Harper 4. Tolutau Koula 5. Christian Tuipulotu 6. Kieran Foran 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Taniela Paseka 9. Lachlan Croker 10. Toafofoa Sipley 11. Haumole Olakau’atu 12. Andrew Davey 13. Jake Trbojevic 14. Dylan Walker 15. Ben Trbojevic 16. Martin Taupau 17. Morgan Boyle 18. Josh Schuster 19. Ethan Bullemor 20. Kurt De Luis 21. Kaeo Weekes 22. Brad Parker

Analysis: Manly have a tough match up this week with Parramatta, although we’ve seen what the Eels can throw out on a bad day.

After this, their draw opens up against the Titans, Sharks, Raiders and Bulldogs.

As such, I think Day Cherry-Evans is probably the number one Cleary replacement as far as halfbacks are concerned.

Back-to-back scores of 46 and 31 have him dropping in price, now at $643k with a breakeven of 149.

Due to this, maybe it’s worth waiting one week for a big price drop, then move Cleary to DCE next week if keen for the soft run, and to bank some extra cash. Provided you can cover Cleary at HFB this week.

He’s currently owned by 13% of the top 100 through to top 5,000 overall ranked SuperCoach teams.

Not a lot elsewhere, with Reuben Garrick and Haumole Olakau’atu remaining as strong holds.

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Eels: 1. Clinton Gutherson 2. Maika Sivo 3. Viliami Penisini 4. Tom Opacic 5. Waqa Blake 6. Dylan Brown 7. Jakob Arthur 8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard 9. Reed Mahoney 10. Junior Paulo 11. Shaun Lane 12. Isaiah Papali’i 13. Ryan Matterson 14. Makahesi Makatoa 15. Bryce Cartwright 16. Oregon Kaufusi 17. Marata Niukore 18. Ofahiki Ogden 19. Hayze Perham 20. Brendan Hands 21. Sean Russell 22. Elie El Zakhem

Analysis: Parramatta’s draw is tough against the Sea Eagles, Rabbitohs, Bulldogs, Broncos and Storm.

As such I’d be a little reluctant to invest in their players, however I wouldn’t be looking to sell any.

Shaun Lane and Isaiah Papali’i are in terrific form, while Dylan Brown continues to be rock solid with an incredible base of 35 for a five-eighth.

With no scores under 40 this season and three tonnes, Brown is an option to replace Cleary (via duals), especially as he’ll likely get a stack more ball with Mitch Moses out. But the draw, along with Parra’s inconsistency, scares me off him a bit.

Likely to goal-kick in the absence of Moses, Clint Gutherson is a super POD option for anyone looking for a Hail Mary play.

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Saturday, 3pm, Sunshine Coast Stadium, Sunshine Coast

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. Damien Cook 10. Daniel Suluka-Fifita 11. Keaon Koloamatangi 12. Jai Arrow 13. Cameron Murray 14. Blake Taaffe 15. Davvy Moale 16. Siliva Havili 17. Mark Nicholls 18. Izaac Thompson 19. Dean Hawkins 20. Richard Kennar 21. Shaq Mitchell 22. Josh Mansour

Analysis: This is a dream matchup for the Rabbitohs in sunny Queensland against the Warriors, who granted have been better in recent weeks.

Latrell Mitchell looks a red-hot captaincy option; I’ll be a terrified onlooker as a non-owner.

I held Cody Walker with the hope he goes big in this match up.

With upcoming games against the Eels, Panthers, Cowboys and Roosters I’m not looking to recruit any attacking players at South Sydney, Alex Johnston included.

Cam Murray has played every minute the past two weeks and looks a great trade in target despite the tough draw.

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Warriors: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Marcelo Montoya 4. Euan Aitken 5. Edward Kosi 6. Wayde Egan 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Freddy Lussick 10. Tohu Harris 11. Bayley Sironen 12. Jack Murchie 13. Aaron Pene 14. Taniela Otukolo 15. Bunty Afoa 16. Eliesa Katoa 17. Josh Curran 18. Jackson Frei 20. Dunamis Lui 21. Daejarn Asi 22. Adam Pompey 23. Viliami Vailea

Analysis: No interest here, once again a shout out though top Tohu Harris who has been excellent on return from his ACL injury.

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Saturday, 5.30pm, GIO Stadium, Canberra

Raiders: 1. Xavier Savage 2. Nick Cotric 3. Matthew Timoko 4. Sebastian Kris 5. Jordan Rapana 6. Jack Wighton 7. Jamal Fogarty 8. Josh Papali’i 9. Zac Woolford 10. Joseph Tapine 11. Hudson Young 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Adam Elliott 14. Tom Starling 15. Ryan Sutton 16. Emre Guler 17. Corey Harawira-Naera 18. Albert Hopoate 19. Ata Mariota 20. Matt Frawley 21. Corey Horsburgh 22. Semi Valemei

Analysis: Joe Tapine remains a great trade in target, he finally crossed for a try last weekend to belt out a tonne, what form he is in!

Hudson Young looms as a potential super POD off the back of a brilliant 125 against the Titans.

He’s looking incredible, but SuperCoach wise it does look like a case of chasing last week’s points, he scored just 35 and 40 in the rounds prior, so I’m not keen.

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Panthers: 1. Dylan Edwards 2. Taylan May 3. Izack Tago 4. Stephen Crichton 5. Brian To’o 6. Jaeman Salmon 7. Sean O’Sullivan 8. Moses Leota 9. Apisai Koroisau 10. James Fisher-Harris 11. Viliame Kikau 12. Liam Martin 13. Isaah Yeo 14. Mitch Kenny 15. Scott Sorensen 16. Spencer Leniu 17. Charlie Staines 18. Sunia Turuva 19. Matt Eisenhuth 20. Chris Smith 21. Kurt Falls 22. Lindsay Smith

Analysis: With the halves pairing out, and upcoming games against the resurgent Raiders, Storm, Rabbitohs, Warriors and Cowboys, Penrith’s star SuperCoach contingent now face question marks.

Do we stick strong with their players or look to move them on?

I think Penrith will be fine, and if anything, their outside backs may get earlier ball.

Plenty are selling Taylan May, I get it with the halves out, but I also feels it’s a bit of a luxury trade at this stage, unless you have 4+ in hand. I’d sell Izack Tago before him despite scoring better of late.

I’ll be holding May, Kikau and To’o till the end of season with just three trades to spare, I think Penrith are still going to put up strong performances off the back of a full-strength forward pack.

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Saturday, 7.35pm, PointsBet Stadium, Cronulla

Sharks: 1. Kade Dykes 2. Connor Tracey 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Siosifa Talakai 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Matt Moylan 7. Nicho Hynes 8. Toby Rudolf 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Braden Hamlin-Uele 11. Briton Nikora 12. Wade Graham 13. Cameron McInnes 14. Braydon Trindall 15. Aiden Tolman 16. Teig Wilton 17. Andrew Fifita 18. Lachlan Miller 19. Jesse Colquhoun 20. Royce Hunt 21. Matt Ikuvalu 22. Thomas Hazelton

Analysis: Cronulla’s draw really opens up from here with games against the Dragons, Tigers, Sea Eagles, Bulldogs and Knights.

Nicho Hynes could be set to finish the season with a big run of scores, he’s a serious skipper option in this game. He should be your number one Cleary replacement if you’re a non-owner.

Ronaldo Mulitalo, Siosifa Talakai and Jesse Ramien all have buy credentials, as does super POD Connor Tracey who has scored okay in the last month against very tough opposition.

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Cameron McInnes benefitted as expected with Dale Finucane out, playing 78 minutes (extra time included) for 85 points. He’s a solid play in 17s this week while Finucane sits out another week.

Kade Dykes replaces the injured Will Kennedy at fullback.

If Lachlan Miller does come in on game day having been named 18th man, unlikely, with one NRL game to his name, he brings temptation at just $205k.

He scored 82 against the Titans in that outing and looked very impressive.

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Dragons: 1. Moses Mbye 2. Mathew Feagai 3. Jack Bird 4. Zac Lomax 5. Tautau Moga 6. Talatau Amone 7. Ben Hunt 8. Jack de Belin 9. Andrew McCullough 10. Blake Lawrie 11. Billy Burns 12. Jaydn Su’A 13. Tariq Sims 14. Tyrell Sloan 15. Aaron Woods 16. Francis Molo 17. Josh Mcguire 18. Michael Molo 19. Max Feagai 20. Jaiyden Hunt 21. Tyrell Fuimaono 22. Jackson Ford

Analysis: Ben Hunt is another low ownership option to replace Nathan Cleary.

He has mixed SuperCoach from with a five-round average of 58 points, but games against the Sharks, Raiders, Titans, Tigers and Broncos are enticing enough.

While there’s risk involved, he’s in serious form and we know he can go big despite not tonning up this season. Not for me personally.

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Sunday, 2pm, Salter Oval, Bundaberg

Bulldogs: 1. Jake Averillo 2. Jacob Kiraz 3. Aaron Schoupp 4. Braidon Burns 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Kyle Flanagan 8. Max King 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Paul Vaughan 11. Josh Jackson 12. Jackson Topine 13. Tevita Pangai Junior 14. Zach Dockar-Clay 15. Joe Stimson 16. Harrison Edwards 17. Chris Patolo 19. Declan Casey 20. Kurtis Morrin 21. Bailey Biondi-Odo 22. Jeral Skelton 23. Raymond Faitala-Mariner

Analysis: While the Bulldogs have turned their season around, I think last week’s Knights match up was the time to jump on any players of interest.

They now face the Cowboys, Warriors, Eels, Sharks and Sea Eagles. Matt Burton remains tempting, but if the Dogs do struggle against the stronger sides he could go low. Ditto Jacob Kiraz who was immense against the Knights!

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Cowboys: 1. Scott Drinkwater 2. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 3. Valentine Holmes 4. Peta Hiku 5. Murray Taulagi 6. Tom Dearden 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 9. Reece Robson 10. Coen Hess 11. Tom Gilbert 12. Jeremiah Nanai 13. Jason Taumalolo 14. Jake Granville 15. Reuben Cotter 16. Luciano Leilua 17. Griffin Neame 18. Connelly Lemuelu 19. Brendan Elliot 20. Riley Price 21. Tomas Chester 22. Ben Hampton

Analysis: The Cowboys draw opens up for the next few rounds with games against the Bulldogs, Roosters and Warriors, before ending with tougher clashes against the Rabbitohs and Panthers.

Outside of his stellar try-assist for Drinky, Val Holmes looked to have done very little against the Dragons, yet still knocked out 89 points.

With dual CTW-FLB positioning he’ll be very hard not to own for head-to-head finals.

Scott Drinkwater made last week’s sellers suffer with a tonne against the Dragons. With Kyle Feldt out, and Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow starting, there’s also no chance of him getting benched. I actually don’t mind him as a Cleary replacement (via duals) despite plenty moving him on last week. Gun…

I know he’s had two poor weeks, but at tiny ownership Murray Taulagi is a genuine super POD play for anyone wanting to roll the dice.

Jeremiah Nanai goes against most SuperCoach laws due to his very poor base of 38 per game for an 80 minute back-rower. It suggests he is completely attack reliant to score well, making him an avoid.

But what happens when you’re that good the attacking stats just keep coming?

He has back-to-back ton’s and is now priced at $709k! Plenty are jumping on; I’m going to reluctantly bank on those attacking stats even somewhat drying up which could see him punch out a few 40s.

Not for me at the price, but the upside is hard to ignore for anyone looking to jump on.

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Sunday, 4.05pm, Campbelltown Sports Stadium, Sydney

Tigers: 1. Daine Laurie 2. Brent Naden 3. Starford To’a 4. Asu Kepaoa 5. Ken Maumalo 6. Adam Doueihi 7. Jock Madden 8. James Tamou 9. Fa’amanu Brown 10. Joe Ofahengaue 11. Alex Seyfarth 12. Kelma Tuilagi 13. Fonua Pole 14. Zane Musgrove 15. Austin Dias 16. Thomas Freebairn 17. Tyrone Peachey 18. Junior Tupou 19. Jake Simpkin 20. Brandon Tumeth 21. James Roberts 22. Justin Matamua

Analysis: Just one player to chat about here and it’s of course Adam Doueihi.

His return to the starting team post ACL injury has seen the Tigers turn a massive corner, and with games against the Knights, Sharks, Roosters, Dragons and Raiders he’s tempting off the back of 122 points against the Broncos at Suncorp!

With Jackson Hastings and Luke Brooks out, he’ll get a stack of touches, they’ll almost be completely reliant on him in attack.

Recruiting an attacker from a lowly ranked team goes against most of my SuperCoach beliefs, but at $572k, at tiny ownership, available as dual CTW-5/8, he looks hard to ignore.

If the Tigers can continue their resurgence, he could be anything.

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Knights: 1. Tex Hoy 2. Enari Tuala 3. Dane Gagai 4. Bradman Best 5. Dominic Young 6. Anthony Milford 7. Jake Clifford 8. Jacob Saifiti 9. Jayden Brailey 10. Daniel Saifiti 11. Tyson Frizell 12. Brodie Jones 13. Mitchell Barnett 14. Phoenix Crossland 15. Simi Sasagi 16. Pasami Saulo 17. Mathew Croker 18. Jack Johns 19. Jirah Momoisea 20. Adam Clune 21. Kurt Mann 22. Hymel Hunt

Analysis: No interest at the Knights, they’re a shambles at the moment.

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