NRL 2019 Squads

NYCDB

BRL Player
53
37
I honestly think Cotter would have played at least 1 NRL game by now if he hadn't lost 2 years. Very interested to see how he goes coming off these injuries. Hopefully no more bad luck for him. Great talent.

Not much more to be said about Wiltshire. Great player, very hard runner. Wouldn't surprise me if he gets an NRL game sometime next year. Cows got some good young backs in him, Tuala and Taulagi.

Gilbert is a gun. Before he got injured he was averaging the most metres and post contact metres in the Colts. Had a shoulder reco last year and like 1910 said, got injured again this year, hopefully he's not plagued by them as he goes on. Adding some weight will definitely be his goal this off-season.

Potential wise I'd probably put Gilbert ahead of Bayliss but Bayliss is a big lad, something like 193cm/105kg. They should both be playing a lot of ISC next year.

I'm kind of surprised Peter Hola didn't get an NRL/Dev deal for 2019 (unless he's signed elsewhere). From what I've seen I'd put him ahead of Bayliss. Made his ISC debut this year for the Pride and came off the bench for the Junior Kiwis last weekend and ran for 94m. He's still U20 eligible next season so maybe he's still contracted but definitely one to watch.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
25,146
9,238
Brisbane
The Cowboys still have two vacancies left in their roster so I'd imagine Green will be using it as incentive for the young brigade. Right now there's 32 players who the Cowboys can select to play NRL, but there will be more players through out the season who get to train with the NRL brigade. If somebody impresses either during the pre-season or during the season, they will receive one of those vacant spots.

The interesting thing would be to find out who those 'possibles' are. I'm sure players like Hola and Mullany who will come in for sessions and wouldn't be surprised if Sam Martin-Savage, Ben Condon, Jye Anderson etc. all had a taste as well.

2017 is going to pay dividends for this Cowboys side. Life without JT once seemed like the scariest prospect for the Cowboys, with Morgan and Taumalolo leading the way, they have the core that can pick up the pieces. I find it hard to imagine it will click into place right away, Paul Green is going to have to have some real honesty sessions with the squad, but if he settles on a 17 it's hard to imagine the Cowboys missing the finals once again.

The race for the #7 spot has my curiosity. I believe Clifford is without a doubt the future, but I wouldn't be surprised if Green shows some patience and opts for the familiar Martin/Morgan combination as some of the new faces settle into the 17. Also, I wouldn't be shocked at all if a player like Scott Bolton has to fight for his spot in the 17.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
25,146
9,238
Brisbane
I've grown impatient so over the coming days I'll do up a bunch of unofficial squads with likely rosters. Over time we can update the roster, deal? Deal.

Canberra Raiders
Brad Abbey, Luke Bateman, John Bateman, Nick Cotric, Jarrod Croker, Emre Guler, Setefano Hala, Siliva Havili, Ata Hingano, Josh Hodgson, Corey Horsburgh, Royce Hunt, Liam Knight, Sebastian Kris, Joseph Leilua, Dunamis Lui, Makahesi Makatoa, Jack Murchie, Michael Oldfield, Josh Papalii, Jordan Rapana, Paul Roache, Aidan Sezer, Iosia Soliola, Ryan Sutton, Joseph Tapine, Elliott Whitehead, Jack Wighton, Sam Williams, Hudson Young.

A minimum of 3 spots to fill.
 
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Big Pete

International Captain
25,146
9,238
Brisbane
I see Ricky has gone to the ESL to try and snag himself another Hodgson and Whitehead. Stuart has signed a quality player in Bateman, but I struggle to see where he fits in at the Nation's Capital. Bateman is an edge forward who primarily plays on the left hand side, a role that's filled either by Papalii or Whitehead.

Papalii looks to be transitioning to the middle which is a move I'm not fond of. Sure he plays there at Origin level, but that's more out of necessity than Josh's limitations. On the edge, Josh is able to play with more freedom and gets the opportunity to show off his foot-work and ball-play, a feature of his game that would be limited in the middle.

As for Whitehead, I see him in a similar mould as a Ben Creagh. A quality edge runner and a real option close to the line. If you bring him into the middle he doesn't have the skill-set to move the ball nor the size to bend the line.

Suffice to say it's a head scratcher. Bateman will certainly win some admirers and could be a wise fantasy investment but he's going to compromise the rest of the forward pack.

Speaking of which, with Boyd and Paulo gone it's tough to see how the Raiders are going to deal with their departures. Dunamis Lui had his best season to date in 2018, but he's still just an honest toiler. Right now their only other experienced option who is a through and through prop is Ryan Sutton from Wigan. A bench forward who averaged 6.72m a carry, less than a 100m a game, 5 missed tackles and quite honestly is a mind boggling signing. Maybe he'll pull a Mike Cooper?

Their best hope is that Guler, Hala, Hunt, Knight, Makatoa somebody anybody come of age. Truth be told they don't have to do that much to replace Boyd or Paulo who became liabilities at the back end of their stints. However, they need somebody to help fix that defence which is such a pillar of Ricky Stuart's gameplan.

Of all the decisions Ricky Stuart made, going with Sezer & Williams as the halves pairing may have been one of his better options. Williams is a natural halfback, Sezer is a natural five-eighth, they compliment each other and now that they've sorted into their roles they can build their combination. This has to be the end of the line for Sezer. Aidan has a deal until 2020, but at 27 years of age he can no longer be considered a developing half and has to deliver on his potential. If I was a career manager, I'd be looking at other clubs prono, preferably one with low expectations and a decent forward pack.

The backs are the Raiders strength, but they need to sort this Wighton mess out pronto. Ricky has annoited him their star player and while he isn't as good as Ricky pretends he is, he's certainly their best option all things considered. This on it's own could be enough to derail the Raiders, so it's certainly one of the bigger stories of the off-season.

What excites me about Canberra is the prospect of some of their youngsters. Hala, Kris and Horsburgh are already in the NRL squad, but I'd be keen to see what O'Hagan, Smith-Shields and Lyons have to offer if given the opportunity. Their backline is typically fun to watch too when they get to play unstructured footy which makes for unpredictible footy. It isn't always great, but the Raiders have a knack of doing something unusual.
 

scgg

NYC Player
122
51
Russell is an interesting one he's played for Souths for three years in the ISC, played 20's for the Broncos and I am betting that's a Hannay signing from his Souths' coaching.

He used to play Russell in the forwards but Souths have gone back to playing him in the backs. He's very versatile.
Melbourne were also keen on russell 12 months earleir however he got injured. He is a decent lad with his head screwed on. Might end up back in the middle as he is a decent size and has a good motor
 

Super Freak

International Captain
24,643
11,771
Brisbane
Bateman was quite good against NZ, he looks like he would be a good pick up.

I'm just not sure where he fits in the side when Raiders have Whitehead and Tapine on the edges who are both 80 minute players. Whitehead was moved to the left in 2018, which I think was a big mistake from Ricky, and I can't see him being replaced.

Unless they plan on moving Papalii to the front row to try and cover the loss of Boyd and Paulo and move Whitehead to lock.

I guess we'll see, but I suppose he would be quite handy off the bench.
 

Super Freak

International Captain
24,643
11,771
Brisbane
Speaking of Whitehead, I do hope Ricky moves him back to the right edge in 2019.

Whitehead, Leilua and Rapana have a good combination and I thought they suffered a bit not having Whitehead there in 2018. He just doesn't get involved as much on that left edge and he's a player you want to get more involved.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
25,146
9,238
Brisbane
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs

Fa'amanu Brown, Jack Cogger, Christian Crichton, Adam Elliott, Raymond Faitala-Mariner, Kieran Foran, Danny Fualalo, Corey Harawira-Naera, Kerrod Holland, Will Hopoate, Josh Jackson, David Klemmer, Lachlan Lewis, Michael Lichaa, Jeremy Marshall-King, Rhys Martin, Nick Meaney, Marcelo Montoya, Ofahiki Ogden, John Olive, James Ramounos, Chris Smith, Reimis Smith, Sauaso Sue, Aiden Tolman, Renouf Toomaga, Francis Tualau

A minimum of 6 spots to fill.
 
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Alec

International Rep
15,398
6,474
Hard to see the Doggies doing much again, especially if Klemmer leaves.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
25,146
9,238
Brisbane
There's no sense in beating around the bush, the Bulldogs are going to struggle in 2019. They only have a few players who stand out in the NRL competition with the rest being made up of honest toilers. Like Newcastle before them, the Bulldogs are a side that's playing with the future in mind. Every game is going to be an audition and if a player fails to rise to the occasion, they will look to the lower grades or around the competition until they find somebody.

Of all the teams, I doubt I'll spend too much time thinking about the 2019 Bulldogs. With that said, I'm curious to see what approach Pay will take. Will he be an ultra conservative coach and go with something like:

1. Will Hopoate 2. Reimis Smith 3. Kerrod Holland 4. Corey Harawira-Naera 5. Christian Crichton
6. Lachlan Lewis 7. Kieran Foran
8. Aiden Tolman 9. Michael Lichaa 10. David Klemmer 11. Josh Jackson 12. Rhys Martin 13. Adam Elliott

14. Jeremy Marshall-King 15. Danny Fualalo 16. Raymond Faitala-Mariner 17. Sauaso Sue

Or will he try and justify his signings and give Meaney, Cogger, Harawira-Nera a shot in their preferred positions?

I'd have to think the latter approach will at least demonstrate some forward thinking and if they can develop a few players, like Morgan Harper or Renouf Toomaga, maybe just maybe they can jag a spot in the 8 and build from there.
 

Super Freak

International Captain
24,643
11,771
Brisbane
The Bulldogs are going to have a very ordinary backline next season.

They needed to recruit better in that department, but they haven't. They signed a couple of rookies and that's about it.

Klemmer leaving is going to be a massive blow for them. They are lacking in the front row department when it comes to quality and his departure is going to cripple them.

I can't see them coming close to making the 8.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
25,146
9,238
Brisbane
Klemmer would be a huge loss. Not because he's the best traditional front row forward in the game, but because he epitomizes the club.

This is beginning to feel less like Newcastle and more like the Wests Tigers.
 

soup

State of Origin Rep
6,574
4,401
Klemmer would be a huge loss. Not because he's the best traditional front row forward in the game,
Uncanny. I just said words to this effect in another thread and then read your post. Completely agree.
 

Super Freak

International Captain
24,643
11,771
Brisbane
He would be a great pick-up for the Knights. They are really starting to form a formidable pack.

I wonder what it means for Daniel Saifiti, though. I think he has improved quite a bit in the past couple of seasons and last season was his best year of his career so far. He deserves a starting spot next season but it seems Brown favours Ese'ese so I can see him being moved back to the bench. I can't see Klemmer playing from the bench.

Still, they are going to have a pretty good pack next season regardless.

8. Herman Ese'ese/Daniel Saifiti
9. Danny Levi
10. David Klemmer
11. Lachlan Fitzgibbon
12. Mitch Barnett
13. Aidan Guerra

It would be better if they had Slade Griffin, but he's out for the season.
 

Super Freak

International Captain
24,643
11,771
Brisbane
Raiders have lost Ata Hingano for 8 months.

He will undergo surgery to repair the dislocated shoulder he suffered against Australia.
 

Morepudding

NRL Player
1,263
757
Does anyone else think Ivan Cleary is an absolute cat? The whole "Get on the bus or leave" mentality he had at the tigers, and then he leaves to coach his son at the team that sacked him only a few years ago? I mean, it's pretty bloody weird. How anyone could have any respect for him now is beyond me.
 

Broncs_Fan

NRL Player
2,140
842
Does anyone else think Ivan Cleary is an absolute cat? The whole "Get on the bus or leave" mentality he had at the tigers, and then he leaves to coach his son at the team that sacked him only a few years ago? I mean, it's pretty bloody weird. How anyone could have any respect for him now is beyond me.
Yes.
 

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