The first bye round is over, and if we’ve learned anything it’s that bye planning is for mugs and you’re wasting trades bringing almost anyone. Did I mention I hate Dean Pay lately?
The difficult part about this week is that a large number of the keepers who play round 16 have huge break evens. Just nine of the top 40 players by average have break evens below 50, while 18 have break evens above 80. Making matters worse are that nine of them have break evens above 100. As a result, I’m not listing any of them as buys this week (with one notable exception) since the optimal time for most of them will be next round.
If you can hold off getting those guns for a week and use this round to set up your trades for next week you could easily save yourself $100k. That is if the players you’re holding out don’t also lose $100k.
With the likelihood of multiple players resting this weekend, it’s imperative that you wait to make your trades until the last minute. Make sure you keep up with Stilesy’s late mail as usual.
Best call – BUY James Fisher-Harris. Managed a very strong 78 last weekend. As long as he’s playing in the middle then he’s a keeper and still an option this week despite not playing Round 16. The same could be said for Addin Fonua-Blake but I didn’t list him as a buy last week so I’d rather not dwell on him.
Worst call – HOLD Villiame Kikau. Didn’t even suit up for the Panthers last week, hopefully, you were able to trade him out before lockout.
John Bateman ($566,300 2RF|CTW – 79 last round, Average: 69.4, BE 104)
The lone upside of Corey Harawira-Naera’s ridiculous late relegation to reggies was that those who saved a trade were able to flip him straight for Bateman. Even with his triple figure break even this week, he won’t lose a significant amount of cash and is the top scoring CTW this season by average. He’s nearly 5ppg ahead of second place (Briton Nikora) and third place (Latrell Mitchell), with no one else averaging more than 63. This is approaching Damian Cook levels of importance – if you’re not playing Bateman you’re going to have a bad time.
Andrew Fifita ($538,100 FRF – 0, AVG: 66.0, BE 38)
$538k for one of the best FRF’s in Supercoach is a steal, and he’s one of just two of the top 10 FRF eligible players who will take the field for Round 16 (assuming Payne Haas sticks around for Game 3). You shouldn’t need much more convincing.
Esan Marsters ($520,000 CTW – 0, AVG: 61.3, BE 70)
Unlike the other keepers mentioned above, his BE might be higher than his average but it’s not unachievable and he’s definitely someone you can play in your final 17. I’d probably be favouring Bateman over Marsters this week though. Ideally you’ll want both before Round 16.
Matt Moylan ($486,700 5/8|FLB – 0, AVG: 57.8, BE 67)
If you’re selling Adam Reynolds, Cody Walker or even Kalyn Ponga, there’s not a lot of options this week. Moylan may be the best one, with his dual position ability a godsend for those who also own Cameron Munster. He returned successfully from a hamstring injury with 78 against the Dragons, and the Sharks upcoming draw favours him (Eels, Raiders, Bulldogs and Broncos). He’s also a great point of difference play with just 3% ownership.
From the other options, Shaun Johnson is slightly more expensive and may not even play this week while Anthony Milford is horribly inconsistent. Which leaves Moylan as the most consistent option in the halves this week. Just think about how dire things are if that is the state of things.
Kotoni Staggs ($232,200 CTW|2RF – 0, AVG: 29.2, BE 19)
If you read Wenin’s teams analysis, he’s once again taken a bit of my thunder by listing Staggs as a player of note. His scores are pretty pedestrian, and he breaks both of the general bye coverage rules. He’s not a keeper and he’s unlikely to make any real cash – again as Wenin stated a 40 average might see him increase by $60k. Not really worth a trade under normal circumstances.
The fascination with Staggs from my point of view comes from the combination of his very cheap price, low break even and dual position flexibility. He’s also got great job security on a Broncos team that may have turned the corner and plays Round 16. That 30 points could come in handy.
His price enables you to bank some cash off a cow like Maika Sivo or Reuben Garrick, or those looking to offload Sam Burgess. The downgrade allows you to make a run at a single keeper this week, or gear up for two gun trades next week. He won’t play in your 17 outside of that bye round and his low 30s scores aren’t great but are also not a complete auto emergency nightmare. If you’re lucky he’ll cross for a try in Round 16.
Nelson Asofa-Solomona ($394,400 FRF|2RF – 0, AVG: 46.4, BE 5)
With the cupboard pretty bare for Round 16 coverage, Asofa-Solomona becomes an interesting proposition for those trying to stock up. His price has bottomed out right now, down $60k from the start of the season.
His PPM has significantly increased as well, 1.3 in Round 10 and 1.8 in Round 11. He did score a try in his Round 11 score, but his base and power stats have been great for both rounds as well, 62 and 50 respectively. This has occurred with a slight uptick in minutes as well, from the late 30s to low 40s, and hopefully this trend will continue. The only concern is that there was injury related reasons for a minutes increase in those games (Christian Welch – knee in Round 10 and Dale Finucane – HIA in Round 11).
NAS had some huge games during this period last season – 92 in Round 16 against the Roosters and 89 against the Dragons in Round 17. A few games like that would be vital for Round 16 and see him peak at about $500k just when you need to move him on after Origin. A bit of a risk but there’s potential there with only 3% ownership.
Every Bulldog not named Aiden Tolman
Dean Pay is a clown and I couldn’t trust the selections he makes out of a top hat every week.
Joe Tapine ($345,100 2RF – 32, AVG: 22.4, BE 72)
TeamTapine? More like #TeamTapinay. Into the bin.
Hudson Young ($347,000 2RF – 51, AVG: 35.4, BE 30)
Out for five games due to being a grub. Another who can go into the bin. Not a priority sell through since he won’t lose any cash.
Sam Burgess ($465,700 2RF|FRF – 54, AVG: 62.7, BE 74)
It’s now evident why Burgess’ scores have fallen off a cliff in the last month, with the Bunnies backrower scheduled for shoulder surgery after their game on Friday. Given the amount of players who could be rested this week from Origin, you may need to hold him. Just don’t expect much more than his current three round average of 43.0.
Cody Walker ($648,500 5/8 – 0, AVG: 74.8, BE 133)
Adam Reynolds ($472,900 HFB – 43, AVG: 56.8, BE 71)
Both Souths halves are out this week, with Walker being rested and Reynolds out for a decent amount of time with a back fracture. Walker’s massive break even and the fact he will miss Round 16 makes him an obvious sell, plus there would be some concern around his scoring with Reynolds missing for an extended period. Reynolds has to go since he isn’t a keeper and will be missing a very important part of the season.
Jarrod Croker ($407,400 CTW – 26, AVG: 50.7, BE 104)
Hopefully, you didn’t pick him up in Round 8 when his value was over $530k. He’s now just a shade over $400k and with a three-round average of 25.3, it’s impossible to think of a reason to keep him other than being related to him.
Corey Allan ($243,200 FLB|CTW – 18, AVG: 28.5, BE 26)
He’s not a John Palavi level of a failed cash cow, but he’s clearly the worst of a great bunch this season. It’s pretty difficult to play 80 minutes and average less than 30 but here we are. Keep in mind that the average Supercoach player scores about 44-45 a game.
Bryce Cartwright ($420,800 2RF|5/8 – 29, AVG: 47.7, BE 43)
His bye round coverage has passed, let’s hope we never hear of him again.
Kalyn Ponga ($755,600 FLB|5/8 – 0, AVG: 77.3, BE 43)
If you can cover him during this period Ponga, then I think he’s a hold. With Walker and Reynolds also out, and uncertainty about Cameron Munster and James Tedesco that’s probably going to be impossible for most coaches.
There’s a big issue with holding him though, which is the Knights playing Friday evening after both Origin games. If he’s rested from both games, he’ll only play two of the next five rounds. Even with that, the only trade I could outright recommend without some dual position trickery is for Roger Tuivisa-Sheck.
Ponga is currently averaging 90.8 per game at fullback this year (let’s ignore the catastrophe of him picking him at five-eighth for the first three games). Assuming he scores 180 over his next two games (Round 14 and 15) you’d need to find someone who could average 45 from Rounds 13-16 to cover that score. If he misses Round 17 as well, then you’d only need a replacement to average 36 to cover.
From a maths perspective, it seems pretty clear that you could trade Ponga out and find someone who plays every game from here until the end of the season. Unfortunately, the options at fullback and five-eighth who play Round 16 are pretty slim, unless you don’t own RTS (you should). The Warriors captain could give you 70 points a game for the next five round (350 total). That would be a difference of 180 points over Ponga, which would probably be enough to justify two trades. For reference, right now 180 points is difference between first and ninth overall.
Looking past RTS, at five-eighth your options are Moylan, Milford, Norman and Johnson, who all could spring one or two big games but are equally capable of a string of 30s and 40s. The same could be said at fullback where the best non-RTS options are Peta Hiku and Josh Dugan. You could probably end up +100 points by trading one of the above players but is that worth two trades? Ultimately it will come down to your team and how you can cover.
Now you might say “Carlos, but what about Turbo being back this week?” Given that he’ll miss Round 16, will probably slot straight back into the NSW origin side and may have a leg holding together by a piece of floss I’d still have him behind RTS as a trade option this week. If you already own RTS then I think Turbo is worth a punt if you’re desperate for numbers.
Finally, his break even is about half his average, so even if you do trade him out now you’re going to need nearly $800k to get him back as you will need him for the run home. You’d probably need one of Uncle Nick’s Salary Sombrero’s to pull that off. Hold if you can, especially for head to head players.
Cameron Munster ($651,100 FLB|5/8 – 0, AVG: 69.9, BE 146)
If you think Munster is a keeper, which he most certainly looks like this season, then the break-even is irrelevant and you should be holding. That’s not even taking into account the disastrous situation both halves positions are in this week. If you can afford to sell Munster this week you must be doing pretty well.