So this is it – head-to-head grand finals and of course, the finale for the overall race! Shout out to Munsters Inc a.k.a. Bear13, who sits 54 points off top spot and well within a chance of taking out the $50k. And I know some of your crazy cats have serious coin up for grabs in head-to-head leagues as well, so it’s all-important this week.
Since it’s the final week, it’s not about taking punts anymore, so I’ll be pretty short and to the chase – unless it’s reporting injury news, if I don’t think they’re SuperCoach-relevant this week, I ain’t gonna talk about them. It’s been a pleasure to write for you all again this year, but I’m keen for a break. Let’s go!
As always we must thank Matt Hawker and his ridiculously good site – here’s a direct link to the Minutes section where I borrow these screenshots from – SO GOOD!
Obviously the Broncos lost Macca in the 24th minute, which saw Alex Glenn (80) shifted to hooker predominantly although Thaiday (41) and McGuire (65) also pitched in. Fifita (56) came on the field on the right edge for the remainder of the game, with TPJ (61) shifting onto the left edge but also spending time in the middle. In terms of forwards, TPJ is obviously a gun but he’s hard to trust given his fluctuating minutes. McGuire is stable in his minutes, but is very much meat-and-potatoes. Glenn is a sneaky POD option as there could be points on offer as he runs off Milford, but there’s a high chance he spends time in the middle again as he spells Turpin (if not even starts at hooker). Not much else of note here.
Rhyse Martin (17) obviously went down early, and this saw Elliott (80) shift from lock to the edge and the likes of Klemmer (61), Fualalo (46) and Tolman (72) get the extra game time. Jackson (67) got an early shower due to the comfortable scoreline. Tolman, Klemmer are both potential 50-65 scores if you need a safe option, Jackson has some upside as he’ll most likely play 80 and will run at Moylan. Martin is very hard to trust given his injury, and the fact that he probably doesn’t kick? Holland did a great job as back-up after all… Elliott is a smokey if he gets to play on the left edge if Martin is out, running at Townsend.
Gooper only played 54 minutes due to HIA, this saw Lowe come on the field and play the remaining 26 minutes. Lolo stood up and played 68 minutes, while McLean (47) and Scott (45) were both good in decent game time. Still, you’re only looking at Lolo as a must-have, and Hess (80) and Gooper (usually 80) for PODs – both of whom could go quite large this week given the susceptible Titans’ defence.
Aitken was the big casualty in this game, as he limped off with a hamstring injury after 19 minutes. This saw Dufty come off the bench and play 61 minutes, with Nightingale (43) shifting to the wing, before leaving shortly after halftime with a suspected dislocated elbow. The Dragons are a mess at the moment however a game against the Knights isn’t the worst way to sign off the regular season. Leilua Jnr has been impressive in his last 3 rounds with a 3RA of 77.3 – but this depends on him being named to start in final team lists. Tariq on the right edge has dropped off his scoring lately but he is a sneaky chance to score some attacking stats this week I think! All in all, I’d avoid Dragons’ forwards this week.
Moeroa (65) went off for a HIA. With no Brown, no Alvaro, Terepo (62) got the big minutes in the middle as the starting lock. Aside from him, there is literally no one else you could consider from this pack right now. Niukore getting 54 minutes on the left edge, but available at CTW, if you were super desperate. But you’d expect them to get beaten quite soundly this week…
Lachy Fitz (25) went off after a sickening head knock, this saw Josh King (53) come on and get big minutes, and actually play pretty well! Watson also left the field with a groin injury after 50 minutes, which saw Buhrer replace him at five eighth. Guerra (70) and Barnett (80) are your constants and I think both are sneaky chances of attacking stats this week. The Ese’ese and Saifiti combo are getting consistent minutes, but just not enough of them to be relevant for SuperCoach.
Whare (29) came off with a suspected broken arm and this saw Peachey shift to right centre (while playing injured anyway) and May (51) come on and take over at five eighth. Yeo (78), Kikau (80) and at a pinch JFH (62) are your only SuperCoach options in this pack, as RCG (50), Merrin (37), Tamou (37) just don’t get the minutes and/or have the workrate to be relevant at the moment.
Cook, Crichton are your must-plays from the Bunnies, as they continue to churn out 80 minutes. Surgess still got decent minutes with 76 and he’s hard to overlook this week, but his workrate is certainly lower than usual. Murray (51) got bigger minutes as well which does impact Surgess’s work rate given how busy Murray is while he’s on the field. Clark (11) was sinbinned. Nothing else doing here, unless you wanted to consider a Hail Mary play with Sutton who is also consistently getting 80 on the left edge.
Papalii (57) has been an interesting prospect playing at lock, and he looms as a real POD if you need one in Round 25. Whitehead is another option as he is locked in for 80 minutes, although he is heavily reliant on attacking stats to do well. Will they come this week? I’m not so sure myself. Hodgson (80) is in fine form on the field and generally speaking, in SuperCoach terms too but again, would you play him over Cook or Smith? Nothing else of relevance aside from those few names.
The Roosters lost Napa to suspension for three weeks, but they regain JWH which to be honest is a win for them. Napa was sinbinned and played 39 minutes, whereas JWH had been averaged 50-55 minutes for the last five rounds before his injury. Cordner has been building some real form SuperCoach-wise and is locked in for 80 minutes – running at Mitch Moses this week sounds juicy too! Liu is getting big minutes on the right edge as well (67 this week) but there’s not really any way you can trust the rest of the forwards aside from Cordner right now. Radley is a gun on the field but his minutes fluctuate too much (43, 36, 40, 49, 50, 47 is ugly reading) to trust him for SuperCoach purposes.
Jake Turbo (80), Marty Taupau (49) – they’re the clear guns in this team. Especially while Trent Hodkinson (16) remains on the bench to spell Fainu (64). Shaun Lane could be a bit of a Hail Mary play given his high attacking upside, especially if he gets to stay on the right edge. This will depend on how Barrett uses Gosiewski (76) though, who is named on the bench this week.
Interesting how Fifita blows up last week and this week comes out and gets his highest minutes since Round 13 with 66! He was a beast, but jeez those minutes are hard to predict right now. Woods went from 61, 61 off the bench to 44 last week. Gal’s minutes declined from 72, 69, 62 and just 60 last week. I find it hard to trust any of them, even Fifita. Wade Graham making it through 80 minutes was a great sign though, and I think he is a real POD against the Bulldogs this week. This week, does Woods get more game time against his old (half a season old) club? Does Fifita play big minutes again? Or is it Gal’s turn this week? I don’t even think Flanno knows…
Smith (Cam that is) was back to 80 minutes and playing without a care in the world. You couldn’t even tell he had been injured the previous week. Stimson and Kaufusi both got 80 minutes on the edges but with whispers that Hoffman is back, I wouldn’t be able to trust Stimson to play the full 80. Finucane’s minutes dropped back to 52, and this puts him back within five minutes of Glasby (48) and JBrom (47). CS09 and a POD of Kaufusi would be the only two forwards I’m looking at here…
No injuries in this game to upset the minutes, so the only players of interest are Eisenhuth (consistently getting 65ish minutes in the middle), Chee-Kam (80 minutes on the right edge, available at CTW/2RF and that’s about it. Farah isn’t really even an option now that he’s getting 60-65 minutes, with Liddle (19) pinching minutes off him.
James was on fire until he was forced from the field due to HIA, playing 57 minutes. Arrow (49) continues to be managed but somehow smashed out 65 or so this week – what a PPM monster! Ash Taylor came off in the 72nd minute due to a head knock. The minutes for the Titans are messy but Proctor seems nailed on for 80 each week (barring injury), Peats and Rein (78 and 53) are sharing minutes on the field at the same time but inconsistently, and James usually will play 80. Arrow is around 45-50 minutes these days but his PPM still puts him in gun territory when he plays the 50.
Tohu’s first game back saw him play 69 minutes before an early shower due to the comfortable scoreline. Manners (57) also got an early mark after having a strong game, and this saw Papalii come on and Blair (68) shift into the middle. Luke (75) might be an option but it’s really hard to go past Cook/Smith at the moment. Not much else of relevance – it’s basically Tohu or nothing here!