Monday 1 March 2010

Fox Sports Fantasy NRL Guide 2010: Back Row Forwards Primer

Fox Sports Fantasy NRL Guide 2010 Primer: BACK ROW FORWARDS

READ THIS FIRST! Fantasy NRL Fans - you cannot afford to miss this breakdown of the Bargains & Busts of 2010.
Or via - Updated for Round 1!

For a few years now Fox Sports Fantasy NRL has been the best Fantasy competition on the internet for keeping competitors interested in the game from week to week.

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So before you finalise your team for 2010 - check back here for every position broken down to sort the stars from the duds.

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Nathan Hindmarsh Eels 10.0 1007
+ You know exactly what Hindmarsh will bring to the table each week (45/14/100 in 2009) and you'll love him for it. The 10.0 price tag may not be so welcome though and it is almost too high to be comfortable spending in 2010. While you'll get plenty of tackles from Hindy - his hit up counts vary and he's not a pure line breaking forward. His offloads jumped significantly in 2009 to 52 from 10 the year before. Consistency you will get in Hindmarsh, for explosiveness look elsewhere for your Fantasy side.

Anthony Watmough Sea Eagles 9.5 889
+ Manly's left side attack will always be a threat with Watmough running lines down it. The loss of Matt Orford may result in Watmough taking some time to adapt to his new playmaker but he's good enough to be as damaging as ever. He will miss tackles, make errors and concede penalties so don't be shocked by that part of his game. But his numbers (24/16/137) are complemented by 8 Tries, 13 LBs, 4 Try Assists, 3 LBAs, 54 Offloads & 143 Tackle Busts. You will get some huge games from Watmough in 2010 - but he's not quite a home run every week.

Sam Burgess Rabbitohs 9.5 0
+ Burgess will be a force in the NRL and should come under serious consideration for your Fantasy NRL squad. His numbers in Super League last year were solid at 24/16/117 but he has big upside carrying the ball. If he plays in the backrow at Souths and gets good minutes there's every reason to think he could be a 30/17/140 guy with line breaking, tackle busting and offloading potential. You'll have to spend 9.5 to get him but you'll enjoy the experience. 

David Stagg Bulldogs 9.0 1005
+ Put in a monster Fantasy season in his first year locking the scrum at Canterbury. Clocking up 44 Tackles per game is Fantasy NRL gold but it was his work with the ball that made Stagg a real asset. Averaged 12 runs for 77 Metres in 24 games with 4 Tries, 3 Try Assists, 5 LBAs, 4 LBs, 44 Offloads & 58 Tackle Busts. Missed the trials through injury and might miss Round 1 - but once fit you can't do much better than the Bulldogs #13.

Corey Parker Broncos 8.5 1056
+ Now the prime goalkicking forward in the game (hookers don't count!) with Craig Fitzgibbon off to England. Having the potential to add 4-10 points through goals each week makes Parker a real Fantasy option even at 8.5. Hard worker (31/13/88) who might play closer to the ruck in 2010 after being used as a wider running lock in 2009. The Brisbane pack has lost a lot of leaders in the past few years - Parker must continue to take up the slack.

Bronson Harrison Raiders 8.5 952
+ The bargain buy of the backrowers in 2009 is going to cost you in 2010. Harrison went from bench player at the Tigers to regular 80 minute player at Canberra and his Fantasy value skyrocketed. In 24 games averaged 30/12/88 vs 19 games for 20/6/48 in 2008 - the difference is startling. Offloads at will (74 in 2010) and makes things happen (5 Tries, 8 Try Assists, 10 LBAs, 6 LBs & 64 Tackle Busts) running the ball. Canberra struggled last year and he still produced Fantasy points so he's going to get picked by a lot of teams.

Paul Gallen Sharks 8.5 786
+ Takes it upon himself to run the ball for Cronulla... which isn't always the best thing for the Sharks - but it is great for your Fantasy team. A stat junkie who always seems to pick up a try every other game - a huge asset for a forward. Stat line of 31/19/152 to go with 52 Offloads and 44 Tackle Busts - in just 16 games. If he's rehabbed his shoulder injury back to 100% consider him and for 8.5 - you should have him in your sights regardless of Cronulla's form.

David Taylor Rabbitohs 8.5 670
+ The human road train is exciting to watch but you run the risk of disappointment if you draft Taylor into your Fantasy team. That's not to say he's not a force in any given week - but the week's he does nothing you'll rue spending 8.5 on him for the privilege. Huge second half of 2009 saw his stat line read 22/11/96 with 5 Tries, 8 Try Assists, 7 LBAs, 11 LBs, 23 Offloads & 66 Tackle Busts. Plus he did that in only 49 minutes per game. Has handling issues and misses tackles but you're selecting him for the games he explodes in.

Glenn Stewart Sea Eagles 8.0 842
+ Since adding some genuine playmaking ability (6 Try Assists, 12 LBAs in 2009) - Stewart's grunt numbers have suffered particularly in the hitup counts. Still averaging 34/13/86 isn't bad when you also have 3 Tries, 6 LBs, 23 Offloads & 76 Tackle Busts to go with it. Will be a key link man on the right once again in 2010 but his running numbers could once again drop as they have for 2 straight seasons. Still a good play at 8.0 however. 

Trent Waterhouse Panthers 8.0 840
+ Penrith boast one heck of a backrow with Waterhouse lining up alongside Luke Lewis & Frank Pritchard - and Waterhouse is the most reliable Fantasy play. Averaged 74 minutes per game for 34/15/102 with 3 Tries, 3 Try Assists, 6 LBAs, 6 LBs, 45 Offloads & 64 Tackle Busts in 21 games. Those are Fantasy numbers you take to the bank and live off all year. At 8.0 that's a good investment.

Ben Creagh Dragons 8.0 789
+ The Dragons love to run Creagh down the left off a Ben Hornby short ball and Creagh's 8 Tries, 10 LBs & 57 Tackle Busts suggest it worked a lot of the time. His stats are solid 21/14/114 and he plays nearly every minute. There's no reason to think Creagh won't be central to the St.George-Illawarra attacking game plan yet again in 2010 - so consider him for yours.

To be added...

Andrew Ryan Bulldogs 7.5 799

Anthony Tupou Sharks 7.5 768

Anthony Laffranchi Titans 7.5 866

Simon Mannering Warriors 7.5 726

Luke O'Donnell Cowboys 7.5 563

Feleti Mateo Eels 7.5 513

Frank Pritchard Panthers 7.5 566

Luke Lewis Panthers 7.5 490

Chris Heighington Tigers 7.5 538

Gareth Ellis Tigers 7.5 618

Alan Tongue Raiders 7.0 604

Ryan Hoffman Storm 7.0 875

Micheal Luck Warriors 7.0 718

Zeb Taia Knights 7.0 907

Jeremy Smith Dragons 7.0 378

Dene Halatau Bulldogs 6.5 373
+ Looked set to partner Andrew Ryan in the Canterbury second row to start the season but a foot injury puts him out of action for 8 weeks. Former Tiger will be worth looking at once healthy though.

Tom Learoyd-Lahrs Raiders 6.5 438
+ Probably Canberra's most important forward... suffered a knee injury in the final trial and will miss 2 months. Huge loss for the Raiders and now Learoyd-Lahrs faces a really tough task to reclaim his NSW Origin jumper. Cruel blow for a talented big man.

Ashley Harrison Titans 6.5 460

Mark Minichiello Titans 6.5 622

Willie Mason Cowboys 6.5 485

Michael Crocker Rabbitohs 6.5 234

Dean Young Dragons 6.5 667

Nate Myles Roosters 6.5 391

Luke O'Dwyer Titans 6.0 355

Jacob Lillyman Warriors 6.0 428

Scott Bolton Cowboys 6.0 634

Steve Southern Cowboys 6.0 383

Ben Smith Eels 6.0 515
+ Busted cheekbone in trial will put him behind the 8-ball getting a start in the beefed up Parramatta pack. Was more than useful in run to Grand Final last year though, so will get a look in first grade once fit. Avoid for now.

Eddy Pettybourne Rabbitohs 6.0 614

Matt Prior Dragons 6.0 591

Liam Fulton Tigers 6.0 0

Gary Warburton Bulldogs 5.5 444

Danny Galea Raiders 5.5 380

Joe Picker Raiders 5.5 273

Will Matthews Titans 5.5 199

Chris Bailey Sea Eagles 5.5 649

Joe Galuvao Sea Eagles 5.5 0

Todd Lowrie Storm 5.5 600

Ben Matulino Warriors 5.5 297

Cory Paterson Knights 5.5 157

Evarn Tuimavave Knights 5.5 123

Matt Hilder Knights 5.5 736

Shane Shackleton Eels 5.5 492

Nathan Smith Panthers 5.5 549

Nigel Plum Panthers 5.5 256

Neville Costigan Dragons 5.5 405

Anthony Cherrington Roosters 5.5 98
+ Roosters had high hopes that 2010 was the year Cherrington realised some of his potential... did knee in final trial and won't be seen again in 2010. Shame.

Lopini Paea Roosters 5.5 413

Alex Glenn Broncos 5.0 526

Ben Te'o Broncos 5.0 458

Mickey Paea Bulldogs 5.0 117

Reece Williams Sharks 5.0 461

Sam Tagataese Titans 5.0 96

Manase Manuokafoa Cowboys 5.0 194

Joseph Paulo Panthers 5.0 307

Junior Moors Tigers 5.0 0

Mark Flanagan Tigers 5.0 0

Lagi Setu Broncos 4.5 384

Corey Payne Bulldogs 4.5 398
+ Recruited from the Wests Tigers for 2010, but won't play for Canterbury until 2011 after requiring shoulder surgery.

Daniel Harrison Bulldogs 4.5 0

Lee Te Maari Bulldogs 4.5 51

Yileen Gordon Bulldogs 4.5 325

Shaun Fensom Raiders 4.5 35

Grant Millington Sharks 4.5 469

Shane Rodney Sea Eagles 4.5 389

Atelea Vea Storm 4.5 153

Kevin Proctor Storm 4.5 101

Cameron Ciraldo Knights 4.5 18

Mark Taufua Knights 4.5 514

James Tamou Cowboys 4.5 224

Steve Rapira Cowboys 4.5 293

Matthew Bell Panthers 4.5 423

Ben Lowe Rabbitohs 4.5 407

Jason Clark Rabbitohs 4.5 0

Shannan McPherson Rabbitohs 4.5 378

Nick Kouparitsas Roosters 4.5 85

Joel Thompson Raiders 4.0 185

Vic Mauro Sea Eagles 4.0 39

Jake Marketo Dragons 4.0 0

Daniel Conn Roosters 4.0 70

Riley Brown Titans 3.5 62

Dan O'Regan Storm 3.5 11

Hep Cahill Storm 3.5 30

Epalahame Lauaki Warriors 3.5 0
+ Seriously who does the player lists for Fox Sports? This guy hasn't been in the NRL since 2007!!!

Constantine Mika Knights 3.5 44

David Fifita Tigers 3.5 0

Simon Dwyer Tigers 3.5 19

Willie Mataka Tigers 3.5 57

Rohan Ahern Broncos 3.0 29
+ Season ending injury in trials.

Taniela Lasalo Eels 3.0 8

Junior Paulo Dragons 3.0 0

Boyd Cordner Roosters 2.5 0
+ Torn ACL. Season over.

Rodney Moefa'auo Sharks 2.0 0

Billy Rogers Storm 2.0 0

Justin Horo Eels 2.0 0

Tim Robinson Eels 2.0 0

Daniel Penese Panthers 2.0 0

Jack Bosden Dragons 2.0 0

Aidan Guerra Roosters 2.0 0

Jason Baitieri Roosters 2.0 0

Jason Schirnack Tigers 2.0 0

Matt Hyland Tigers 2.0 0

Nu Akeripa Tigers 2.0 0

Rhys Curran Tigers 2.0 0

All feedback welcome.