The Round 5 ‘But’
Well its been 5 Rounds and a few weeks ago I told you guys that its right about this time that we get a clear indication of what teams really look like for 2012.
So here is the ladder at the end of Round 5:
- Sea Eagles
Now for every team I believe there is an easy assumption to make BUT there is also a counter to that assumption. There is always a ‘BUT’ whenever you say something about any of the teams and there position on the table. Instead of trying to explain it I will just get into:
Melbourne Storm are easily the best team right now playing rugby league
when you consider the strongest players in the side are a shoe-in for representative selection, the biggest test for Melbourne always comes around Origin time. We say the same thing every year but its worst for them this year because Cooper Cronk has to be the QLD starting halfback.
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs are an interesting case when you considering that not much changed over the off season for them as far as player additions and subtractions go. This means that Des Hasler has made a huge difference to this squad
the Bulldogs are in the same position as Melbourne. Surely the loss of Ennis (who has already won the Hooker position in my opinion) will make a big difference to them come Mid Year.
The Brisbane Broncos don’t seem to be suffering from any hangovers with the loss of Darren Lockyer from there team
I don’t trust Corey Norman in that 5/8 position and Brisbane have a nasty habit of losing key players to injury. Especially in their forward pack. A Thaiday or Wallace injury could see the season get tougher from them.
The North Queensland Cowboys are a premiership winning team when Jonathon Thurston plays like he did on Monday night
he won’t play like that all season long. He seemed calm on Monday night and that’s not something he does very well. He loses his head and his team suffer for it. They’ve been suffering for it since the 2005 Grand Final loss.
People seemed to have doubts about the St George Illawarra Dragons this season. To me it seems like they are sitting nicely in 5th place with there perfect balance of attack and defence. Which shows considering the difference in their FOR/AGAINST is only 2 points
the mediocre attack they have shown so far is not enough to defeat Melbourne, Brisbane (as we saw on the weekend) or the Bulldogs. It won’t win them a premiership but they are still a top 8 team.
The Cronulla Sharks are playing good footy (that was pretty simple). They are finishing games like they should and they are riding the Todd Carney speedway all the way
honestly how long does it last? The Sharks have only met one of the teams that sit above them on the ladder (Cowboys) and I think that’s when they may slide back down to earth. No team with John Morris deserves and Top 8 position.
The Sydney Roosters have done one big thing before the start of the season – they put everybody on notice. Nobody gave them the respect they deserved (including myself) and they’ve have fed everybody a large warm serving of humble pie
its the same story with the Sharks. The Roosters met Melbourne and the Storm gave them a whooping (44-4). The real test for the Roosters has to be playing the Bulldogs and Dragons. If they win those games then the punters will know how legitimate these Bondi boys really are.
The Penrith Panthers hate playing at home…they’ve played there twice this year and lost both times. Not to mention the 3 times they lost there last year (capping it off at 5 games lost in a row at home). Safest bet is to put money on them winning away from Centrebet Stadium
no matter where they are playing this year they are frustrating to watch. Sometimes its like watching two different teams playing on the field. One week they are scoring tries all over the shop and the next they can’t even find the line. I’m sure its because of a new coaching style and lack of experience in the halves.
The Canberra Raiders lost Dugan but it doesn’t matter because Terry Campese is playing like a superman. He looks healthy and comfortable controlling the ruck. Canberra could potentially be a top 8 team come finals time
if Campese goes down its all over. That’s the biggest risk for Canberra fans right now and I wouldn’t be surprised if it happens very soon.
The Newcastle Knights don’t look very good right now. They are definitely not the team I thought they were going to be at the start of the season.
that’s not to say they won’t turn it around. With that much skill on the park its hard to believe they won’t be great. Remember that Newcastle had the biggest changes over the off season and a new coach to boot, it takes a long time to gel that together.
The Warriors are finding it hard to back up what they did late last year. The luck seems to have turned against them and I personally am not convinced that they will back up last years performance
you are not allowed to right off this team. Last year the lost 3 out of the first 5 matches (sound familiar) and not long after that they played in the Grand Final. I truly believe that Shaun Johnson is the best young halfback in the game and he can take them to the finals. Trust me!
The South Sydney Rabbitohs are having there best defensive season to date. The most points they have lost by this season is 14 and that was against the Storm. Its not hard considering they where the worst defensive team last year
they still don’t know how to finish games they are winning early on. The Roosters and Broncos games should have been put in the W section but they didn’t have the confidence to close the game out. They might turn it around but it won’t see them playing finals football in my opinion.
The Manly Warringah Sea Eagles aren’t winning games they should be winning. They should have beat Cronulla in Round 3 and they should never have given Parramatta that much respect last week
Manly can rebound better than any team in this competition. They haven’t played one game at Brookvale yet (they will this weekend) which really hurts them because they have a great record there. Just like the Warriors you should never write off a team with this much youth and potential.
It hasn’t been the best start to the season for the West Tigers. They lost players to injury and judiciary. Their big signing Adam Blair looks confused and most Dragons fans are starting to realise that Moltzen wasn’t actually worth the trouble
its really tough to tell. Some times I see life in the Tigers and other times they look like a NSW Cup team. They looked flat against the Raiders two weeks ago and they where lucky to get a win against the Sharks in Round 1. It looks like they need a huge kick up the bum to get them going again.
The Gold Coast Titans suck this year. Is anyone surprised?
I actually believe things will get worse for them. Titans will go back to back with the wooden spoon. Unless they can stumble across some amazing player in there under 20′s team, I really don’t see anything changing.
The Parramatta Eels are a shell of a team when Jarryd Hayne is not on the field. When he plays they look exactly as we expected them to look. You can see how much Hayne enjoyed playing a game where he didn’t have to lift the load last Saturday night
that’s the only good thing I can say about the Eels right now. Sandow looks fat and Ben Roberts is average at best. These are your two halves? The Hindmarsh Retirement buzz can only get these guys so far. The amount of times they looked confused and backwards against Manly was atrocious for a professional football team.
So what’s the best part about all of what I have written? Teams have 21 more rounds to prove me wrong. The NRL is such a close competition that people are scared to predict where teams finish. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t at least attempt to make a prediction based on amazing or terrible games. One things for sure, we aren’t scared to tell you what’s good and bad about the teams here ‘On The Try Line’
Posted on April 6, 2012, in On The Line Defence and tagged Cooper Cronk, Corey Norman, Des Hasler, Jarryd Hayne, Johnathon Thurston, NRL, Shaun Johnson, Terry Campese, Todd Carney. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.