2023 Top Eight

BooKhaki

BooKhaki

NRL Player
Sep 16, 2020
2,691
3,617
Let's see everyone's predictions.


1. Sydney Roosters
2. Penrith Panthers
3. Melbourne Storm
4. South Sydney Rabbitohs
5. North Queensland Cowboys
6. Canterbury Bulldogs
7. Brisbane Broncos
8. Canberra Raiders

9. Parramatta Eels
10. Manly Sea Eagles
11. Wests Tigers
12. Cronulla Sharks
13. Gold Coast Titans
14. St George Illawarra Dragons
15. New Zealand Warriors
16. Newcastle Knights
17. The Redcliffe
 
Financeguy

Financeguy

NRL Player
Apr 24, 2013
1,929
2,870
1. Storm
2. Panthers
3. Roosters
4. Cowboys
5. Souths
6. Sharks
7. Eels
8. Titans
9. Bulldogs
10. Broncos
11. Raiders
12. Dolphins
13. Tigers
14. Dragons
15. Manly
16. Warriors
17. Knights
 
Renegade

Renegade

State of Origin Captain
Contributor
Mar 14, 2008
8,565
10,650
1. Panthers
2. Cows
3. Sharks
4. Roosters
5. Souths
6. Storm
7. Broncos
8. Eels
 
Fernando

Fernando

NRL Captain
Jun 6, 2015
3,879
4,148
1. Panthers
2. Rabbitohs
3. Roosters
4. Sharks
5. Cowboys
6. Storm
7. Broncos
8. Bulldogs
 
Accept

Accept

NRL Captain
Sep 27, 2016
3,435
3,811
The way I see it at this stage.

Penrith
Sydney
NQ
Melbourne

Souths
Cronulla
Redcliffe
Parra

Canberra
Canterbury
Brisbane
Gold Coast
Newcastle
St George
Wests
Manly

NZ

No doubt this might be altered a bit considering that we have a whole freaking off-season to go yet.
 
Renegade

Renegade

State of Origin Captain
Contributor
Mar 14, 2008
8,565
10,650
The way I see it at this stage.

Penrith
Sydney
NQ
Melbourne

Souths
Cronulla
Redcliffe
Parra

Canberra
Canterbury
Brisbane
Gold Coast
Newcastle
St George
Wests
Manly

NZ

No doubt this might be altered a bit considering that we have a whole freaking off-season to go yet.
I see Melbourne dropping a bit more this year. They get Paps back but they are missing a wealth of experience in Bromwich x 2, Kafusi and Smith leaving. I see them in the bottom rungs of the 8, they'll make it but they are a spent force.
 
IceWorks

IceWorks

NRL Player
May 10, 2019
1,093
1,625
Redcliffe making the 8 in their first season.. hard to see, would be wanting juicy odds.
 
Mustafur

Mustafur

State of Origin Captain
Contributor
Jun 13, 2019
9,226
13,439
1. Panthers
2. Roosters
3. Cowboys
4. Sharks
5. Storm
6. Broncos
7. Bulldogs
8. Souths

I think Storm will have more trouble next season, the biggest differential of that not happening will be Paps(who is injury prone asf) but there is alot more issues to deal with because they have to completely rebuild their forward pack plus the realisation of it being Bellamy's last.

Roosters will get back to were they have been previously but still a gap to Panthers, I think that team even with a few cogs missing is still going to be too much for the competition.

We will improve, I'm expecting a similar path as last season where we peak a bit too early and fall back( I think we will be in the top 4 for quite a bit of the season but with less of a fall).

Dogs will have the big improvement but I don't want to place them too high based on past failed expectations but they do have a really good squad on paper but I feel the best will come the season after.
 
theshed

theshed

Just a Game
Aug 28, 2010
14,688
33,636
1. Panthers
2. Roosters
3. Sharks
4. Storm
5. Cowboys
6. Eels
7. Rabbitohs
8. Bulldogs
9. Broncos
10. Dolphins
11. Raiders
12. Dragons
13. Tigers
14. Titans
15. Sea Eagles
16. Warriors
17. Knights
 
Sproj

Sproj

Immortal
Senior Staff
Sep 6, 2013
51,868
62,892
1. Panthers
2. Roosters
3. Cowboys
4. Sharks
5. Storm
6. Broncos
7. Bulldogs
8. Souths

I think Storm will have more trouble next season, the biggest differential of that not happening will be Paps(who is injury prone asf) but there is alot more issues to deal with because they have to completely rebuild their forward pack plus the realisation of it being Bellamy's last.

Roosters will get back to were they have been previously but still a gap to Panthers, I think that team even with a few cogs missing is still going to be too much for the competition.

We will improve, I'm expecting a similar path as last season where we peak a bit too early and fall back( I think we will be in the top 4 for quite a bit of the season but with less of a fall).

Dogs will have the big improvement but I don't want to place them too high based on past failed expectations but they do have a really good squad on paper but I feel the best will come the season after.

The Dogs will take a few rounds to gel but they will be in the top 8 mix for sure. Now if they can land/find a gun fullback to go with Burton and Mahoney, well they could be top 4 but I suspect they will follow a bit of the Broncos' pattern this year.

I know Dogs supporters get a bad wrap but it is important for league for the Dogs to be doing well, they are a big club.
 
Harry Sack

Harry Sack

International Rep
Forum Staff
Jun 12, 2013
13,497
16,363
1. Panthers
2. Roosters
3. Sharks
4. Storm
5. Cowboys
6. Eels
7. Rabbitohs
8. Bulldogs
9. Broncos
10. Dolphins
11. Raiders
12. Dragons
13. Tigers
14. Titans
15. Sea Eagles
16. Warriors
17. Knights

Pretty much IMO. I think you've nailed the top 5. As per usual the log jam will be 5-11, I think any of those teams can be shuffled around really. Same with 12-17...I can see the Dragons getting the spoon unless the board just get it over with and sack Hook. Dolphins being the big unknown in all of this. Like most, I think the Bulldogs will be the big movers but I've got a sneaking suspicion the Titans might give it a better shake next season as well.
 
theshed

theshed

Just a Game
Aug 28, 2010
14,688
33,636
Pretty much IMO. I think you've nailed the top 5. As per usual the log jam will be 5-11, I think any of those teams can be shuffled around really. Same with 12-17...I can see the Dragons getting the spoon unless the board just get it over with and sack Hook. Dolphins being the big unknown in all of this. Like most, I think the Bulldogs will be the big movers but I've got a sneaking suspicion the Titans might give it a better shake next season as well.
I agree with pretty much everything you’ve said. 7-11 is the hardest part to figure out. Those could go anywhere.

I think Dolphins will over achieve. Wayne will put together a simple game plan that gets them enough ugly wins to be there abouts. Plenty of motivations for him to utilise.

Bulldogs really are top 8 bound, They have the roster, coach, and admin - it’s just a matter of time but could take 2 seasons to fully achieve.

Eels will drop off but they still have enough class and experience to make up the numbers come finals time.

Api is a huge loss for the Panthers but I can’t see the drop off being quite enough to dethrone them as the comp is currently the weakest it’s been in years. Roosters are their only threat for Minor Prem if everything sticks this coming season.

Bunnies and broncos are the hardest to predict in my opinion.

Bunnies went on a pretty hot run at the end but they looked likely to miss the 8 all season until that last stretch. They can mostly thank our world record bed shit for making the 8. I’m not at all convinced by JD and I think Latrell’s huge run of form patched over a lot of their issues. Their roster hasn’t improved going into 2023 and if you are a believer in the Bennett curse - it usually isn’t obvious until the second season (the average position of a post Bennet team 2 seasons in is like 15th). Any injury or suspension to Latrell will basically write of their season again.

Broncos could finish 4, 14th, or anywhere in between and I would be equally unshocked. The playing talent is there but the coaching and mentality just isn’t. It’s all about defence and attitude this coming season and I suggest that our position on the ladder will directly reflect where we rank defensively. My concerns are that our defensive coach was the staff member we felt the need to save for some reason and our only signing is a incredible
Fullback talent who can’t tackle.
 
Sproj

Sproj

Immortal
Senior Staff
Sep 6, 2013
51,868
62,892
I agree with pretty much everything you’ve said. 7-11 is the hardest part to figure out. Those could go anywhere.

I think Dolphins will over achieve. Wayne will put together a simple game plan that gets them enough ugly wins to be there abouts. Plenty of motivations for him to utilise.

Bulldogs really are top 8 bound, They have the roster, coach, and admin - it’s just a matter of time but could take 2 seasons to fully achieve.

Eels will drop off but they still have enough class and experience to make up the numbers come finals time.

Api is a huge loss for the Panthers but I can’t see the drop off being quite enough to dethrone them as the comp is currently the weakest it’s been in years. Roosters are their only threat for Minor Prem if everything sticks this coming season.

Bunnies and broncos are the hardest to predict in my opinion.

Bunnies went on a pretty hot run at the end but they looked likely to miss the 8 all season until that last stretch. They can mostly thank our world record bed shit for making the 8. I’m not at all convinced by JD and I think Latrell’s huge run of form patched over a lot of their issues. Their roster hasn’t improved going into 2023 and if you are a believer in the Bennett curse - it usually isn’t obvious until the second season (the average position of a post Bennet team 2 seasons in is like 15th). Any injury or suspension to Latrell will basically write of their season again.

Broncos could finish 4, 14th, or anywhere in between and I would be equally unshocked. The playing talent is there but the coaching and mentality just isn’t. It’s all about defence and attitude this coming season and I suggest that our position on the ladder will directly reflect where we rank defensively. My concerns are that our defensive coach was the staff member we felt the need to save for some reason and our only signing is a incredible
Fullback talent who can’t tackle.

I think defensively we should be much better than the back end of the season. The issue for us this season was that we had two completely busted second rowers who couldn't tackle or slide by the end because they were so injured. On top of that, we had Haas and Staggs also with busted shoulders and a bunch of blokes who fell off a cliff at the back end including Cobbo, Staggs, Capewell, Riki, Reynolds and Haas. We also lost arguably our hardest working and best back going into the business end of the season. We also had a coach who decided for some reason that blokes who weren't good enough at the start of the year suddenly were at the back end of the year and that just accelerated the self implosion. Hopefully the change in assistant coaches and warning shots given to Kevvie to step it up stops that stupidity happening again.
 
Fitzy

Fitzy

NRL Captain
Sep 10, 2018
3,981
5,609
I think defensively we should be much better than the back end of the season. The issue for us this season was that we had two completely busted second rowers who couldn't tackle or slide by the end because they were so injured. On top of that, we had Haas and Staggs also with busted shoulders and a bunch of blokes who fell off a cliff at the back end including Cobbo, Staggs, Capewell, Riki, Reynolds and Haas. We also lost arguably our hardest working and best back going into the business end of the season. We also had a coach who decided for some reason that blokes who weren't good enough at the start of the year suddenly were at the back end of the year and that just accelerated the self implosion. Hopefully the change in assistant coaches and warning shots given to Kevvie to step it up stops that stupidity happening again.
Hit the nail on the head. Injuries played a major part in our bed shitting. I don’t know if we had our best side all year. Seasons like that can be pretty tough for everyone including fans because you never quite know where you truly sit. Whether that is a player in the team, the bloke rehabbing or the overall teams quality. I hope to god that Billy won’t be picking heaps of broncos players next year and I hope to god there isn’t international games in there as well cause that just means far to many players are playing in an obviously crucial test period.

I think another reason why the failure to make the 8 was so gruelling as well was because of inflated ego’s. A lot of people including heaps on this forum thought the broncos were far better than they really were. Only 2 games left me truly satisfied with how we played. Rabbitoh’s game because it represented a new era and the Manly game. The next closest thing was the Roosters game at home and we lost. I think that is pretty telling for a team with a positive win record. Every other game left me with this feeling of winning could and has felt far better than that before because we didn’t play all that well. What’s worse is that in the Manly game, Manly completely shit the bed, absolutely 0 competition in that game. Only thing that made me happy was how ruthless we were to pile on the points and not give them a sniff. We weren’t anywhere near capable of challenging in the finals at any point during the season.

I think next year the sky is the limit but there is also no cap on how shit we could be. However, I am fairly confident we will make the finals. Our middle forwards as long as they are disciplined I don’t have a worry in the world about. Hopefully our second rowers stay completely fit or at the very least don’t play injured like imo we have 4 NRL starting quality players in Capes, Riki, Brendan and TC. Obviously I would love Kotoni to get back to form so new year and hopefully no rep interruptions will be nice for him getting back to what earned him his payday. The other 3 in Oates, Cobbo and Herbie I have no qualms about. Reyno, my only ask is that with Jock Madden he never plays INJURED. Ezra, he seemed to take pre-season by storm last year and apart from his inexperience seemed like he was training far better than the other options. Hopefully another amazing pre-season he will be excellent.

I really think 3 players will be the measure of whether we truly become an excellent footy team or a bang average team. Our hooking rotation is so important this year. I think locked into that 14 spot is Paix. I don’t think he has the defence to play big minutes at 9 but he can without a doubt change a game with his movement out of dummy half and his IQ. Heaps of people have been critical of Billy but I think now only him and Smoothy can confidently play the bigger minutes at 9. My pick is Tyson personally but regardless one of those 2 have to be picked in tandem with Paix. Hopefully whoever is chooses performs. Scarily, I think our fate predominantly relies upon Reece Walsh. In attack I think he will be amazing for us, I truely do. Defensively however I don’t. I honestly couldn’t give a **** if he can tackle or not. That’s not what I am worried about. His positioning and defensive reads are so important both from a personal perspective and in organising everyone else. He will either take us to the heavens or leave us on our knees begging for mercy. The ball is in Reece’s court.

Obviously the coaching staff pulling there heads in and focusing on defense, errors and discipline is so important for next years success.

1. Walsh
2. Oates
3. Staggs
4. Farnworth
5. Cobbo
6. Mam
7. Reynolds
8. Haas
9. Smoothy
10. Jensen
11. Riki
12. Capewell
13. Carrigan
14. Paix
15. Flegler
16. Hetherington
17. Palasia

That’s a pretty nice side we are looking at. Probably the best spine we have formed in a while in terms of ball in hand. Defensively I have confidence. Hopefully injuries don’t stand in our way of truely going to that next level and genuinely competing for a top 4 finish. I think anything other than top 6 would be a failure barring certain circumstances such as injury or suspension. I could live with a top 8 finish but you ain’t really competing for nothing if you come 8th. Anything lower than 8th Kevvie is gone and I would start to consider remodeling the build up of the squad so that we aren’t paying so much for depth players and for the likes of Flegler and Hetho if they aren’t in the 13.
 

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