It’s that time of year again. We’re in the final week before football is finally back, TLT is right around the corner and the contributors here at NRLSCTalk show you all our teams before the inevitable billion changes that will come on Tuesday evening.
The aim for me this year (apart from beating the rest of these chumps) is just overall rankings improvement. In 2016 and 2017, I had career years with finishes of 103 and 507, earning keyrings in the first two seasons they were available. Last year was a fall from grace though. A final ranking of 6,928 (dropping over 4k in the last round) was simply not good enough and I’m after redemption.
My strategy so far is not an uncommon one. I’m stacking my forwards and going cheap in the backs. Cash generation is key in the little caper, and CTW’s just need one or two decent chances to sky their price, as opposed to the slow burn of most cheap forwards. Plus, there’s so many potential cheapies in the CTW that it’s a plan that may just work out, until none of them are named and I have to reset everything. If everything goes to plan, it’s a very real strategy to go with 5, 6 or even 7 sub-$250k backs.
So without further adieu, here is my current SuperCoach side as we head into the final week of the offseason. As always, the caveat on this is that Team List Tuesday is just days away and will more than likely throw everything you see here right out the window. Until then, here’s what I’ve got:
There have been a few guys who haven’t left my side since the game first opened. I’ll give you a quick rundown on them
Jai Arrow – If you listened to Ep#2 of the SC Report Podcast you’d have heard my thoughts on Arrow. An absolute beast scorer when given over 55 minutes, scoring 84.6 PPG in the 10 games he achieved that mark. But he’s “discounted” due to the other 11 games where he averaged 45.1 PPG in 45.7 MPG.
Cam Murray – Murray was touted as the big breakout candidate this time last year, and now Angus Crichton has left and gifted him a starting spot. He should (stress, SHOULD) step into an approx. 65 MPG role at the very least, and he averaged 60 in less than that when he started last year. The Ethan Lowe signing had me scared for a while but Charity Shield put my mind at ease.
Dylan Brown/Zac Lomax– These rookies are both (near) basement priced and all-but-locks for their teams round one sides. These guys and whoever is the Warriors #7. No brainers.
Kalyn Ponga – I’ll throw Ponga in here as well. He’s a guy I was watching closely over the preseason as I wasn’t 100% locked in on him, but despite everything, he’s never once left my side. What can I say? I’m in love.
The Risky Picks
My biggest gamble of 2019 is in the forwards. I’ve gone a bit mid-price mad with all three of Shaun Lane, Isaiah Papalii and Cam Murray. Murray is a pretty safe bet to be a great scorer and earner this year, but the other two are more risky propositions. Both have the potential to have big SuperCoach seasons but we all know the story on mid-pricers. It’s a risk but one I’m (relatively) comfortable taking.V
At the moment, my POD pick is that of Cody Walker. At time of writing, this gun half is still a POD with just 5.8% ownership, which is just ridiculous. I have to admit, Cody wasn’t high on my radar before all the shenanigans at Penrith had me doubting Cleary, but Walker is a straight swap (via Morgo). This is a guys who plays in one of the NRL’s top attacking sides (582 points scored in 2018, ranked #1), has never averaged under 60 PPG, can put up some massive scores along the way (nine of 74 points or more last year) and would have been the biggest beneficiary of the new try contribution rule in play this season.
The fact that he’s in 5% of teams is ludicrous. With all that being said, I may just cut him for Jahrome Hughes if I need an extra $100k come Tuesday evening. Sangster’s boy is another massive POD at 2.4% ownership.
Did somebody say captain?
The one player I would have loved to fit in but who isn’t (currently) there is James Tedesco (or Tom Trobojevic if it weren’t for the injury affected start to the year). There’s something to be said for locking in the games best players and no longer having to worry about a trade there. And these guys are that added captain choice that can make your round. But with the lack of forward and hooker cheapies seemingly available to us, I wanted to make those spots a little bit heavier, and such these two positions have to suffer.
I’ve gone with my guy, Ponga, and the more value options of Morgo and Walker in the halves. Hopefully, I’m not left rueing my choice too early on in the year.
At the risk of having this
years title stripped, I would…..
Fix up my god-awful centre-wings. I know it’s the strategy and easiest way to make good money in this game, but it’s such an eyesore. Give me room for a couple more gun-ish players like Gutherson or Ramien and I’d be much, MUCH happier.
However, if there was just one name I would absolutely want in my team but haven’t been able to fit in, it would have to be Lachlan Fitzgibbon. I’m tempted to list Tom Trbojevic, Viliame Kikau or Tevita Pangai Jnr here considering all three were in my initial squad before their trial injuries.
Fitzy’s been in my squad for the majority of the preseason but finds himself on the outer now. His combination with Ponga was a highlight of the Knights 2018 season and I can see it just getting stronger this year. I believe he has the potential to bump up with average another 5 points and would love to have him from the start.
Unfortunately, I’ve had to cut him so I could fit in a bit more depth across the squad. I wanted to have some cash available to me so ensure I’ve got the wiggle room to deal with the inevitable cheapie carnage when teams are released, but he was hard to let go.
Bonus section: My Team Name
As anyone who has read my last few NFL season intro articles would be able to tell you, I’m a big fan of clever and original team names (my NFL Fantasy team is called Mike Vick in a Box). But I’ve been horribly un-clever in NRL Supercoach over the last few seasons and have simply been rolling with “Semisonic” as my moniker. That being said, I’m looking for something new and brilliant. If you’ve got any suggestions, let me know.