We’ve finally reached the first bye and, for obvious reasons, need all the players we can muster this week – making the mail all the more crucial.
Also, Vale to the Queen Tina Turner, whose impact on the NRL has been immeasurable.
As usual, the updates across the round will be on Twitter @AStilesAuthor
DOLPHINS V DRAGONS, THURSDAY 7:50PM
DOLPHINS: Brenko Lee, who is seemingly in perennial doubt, could drop out again this week which means those who went early on Valynce Te Whare could be rewarded with a start. The 24 cuts didn’t reveal anything but final team will be crucial here.
24 HOUR CUTS: Edrick Lee, Simbiken, Collins
DRAGONS: No changes expected at this stage with Jack Bird ready to go after sinking a good deal of owners last weekend.
24 HOUR CUTS: Musgrove, Fifita, Turner
EELS V COWBOYS, FRIDAY 8:00PM
EELS: Not expecting any changes at this stage with the team named according to their mass outs.
24 HOUR CUTS: Dunster, Murchie, Lumelume
COWBOYS: Jason Taumalolo has been sighted! And then promptly cut 24 hours out. No other changes expected.
24 HOUR CUTS: Taumalolo, McIntyre, Duffy
WARRIORS V BRONCOS, SATURDAY 5:30PM
WARRIORS: Another side where I’m not expecting any changes at this stage after plenty of cattle have returned.
BRONCOS: Ditto for the Broncos regarding changes, though on the opposite end with plenty of cattle out through Origin. Should be 1-17.
RABBITOHS V RAIDERS, SATURDAY 7:35PM
RABBITOHS: Keaon Koloamatangi is a massive watch in a crucial bye round should be be cleared to return. Physio has him at rounds 13-14 so hopefully he is on the earlier end for potential owners. His return would obviously trigger a shuffle in the forwards. KK is apparently on track after making it through training, but Campbell Graham will likely be ruled out.
RAIDERS: Another side where I’m expecting no changes, though as with last week, any time Tom Starling is named there is a chance he either starts is or benched according to his TLT position.
KNIGHTS V SEA EAGLES, SUNDAY 4:05PM
KNIGHTS: Kurt Mann is on the extended bench and falls into the range Physio predicted for his return. My guess is he would be eased back from the interchange with Adam Elliott retaining the lock role for now. Jackson Hastings will also kick goals ahead of Kalyn Ponga.
SEA EAGLES: Cooper Johns has underwhelmed this season and could be replaced by new recruit Jake Arthur. There was also some rumours doing the rounds about Josh Schuster as he posted something about a setback on Insta, but that has yet to translate into anything else I’ve seen around the traps.