Brisbane will enjoy the consistency of playing on a Friday night for the first 10 rounds of the season, get the bye ahead of Origin II and III so will only be without their Maroons contingent for one week, but do have a tough run home with six matches against top-eight opposition from 2013 in the final seven rounds (against the Storm, Sea Eagles, Bulldogs, Rabbitohs, Knights and Storm again).
They'll rack up the travel miles early on, with only three of their first 10 games being played at ANZ Stadium (plus two designated "home" games at Perth's NIB Stadium and Waikato Stadium in New Zealand), but should have a good run into the finals with six of their final eight games on home turf – and just two of those against top-eight opponents from last year. Any Origin players in their side will miss three matches during the middle part of the season.
Will play six of their first 10 games at home, but their toughest period will be in the middle of the year. They'll lose their rep stars for two games before Origin I and III, in away matches against the Raiders and Dragons, and only play twice at home between Round 11 and Round 20 (with two byes). Finish the season with a tough hat-trick of Souths, Cronulla and Manly before the finals begin.
They'll start the season with six home games in the first nine rounds, although that includes designated "home" games against the Rabbitohs at the SCG in Round 5 and the Roosters at Allianz Stadium in Round 8. They face a tough run home with three of their final four matches on the road, with trips to Canberra, Brisbane and Newcastle.
The 2013 wooden spooners have one of the toughest fixture lists in the competition, starting with a visit from the Warriors then back-to-back away clashes with grand finalists the Roosters and Sea Eagles. In total they play 14 of their 24 matches against teams who made the finals last season. Eels fans also won't get to welcome Ricky Stuart back to Parramatta Stadium, with the two games between the Eels and Stuart's Raiders to be played in Darwin and Canberra.
Last season's fast finishers could be set for a repeat performance in 2014, with six of their final eight games to be played in front of the red and blue faithful at Hunter Stadium, including four of their last five. They'll be expected to pile on some points ahead of the finals against Parramatta and the Dragons in Round 25 and 26. They'll be on the road for five of their seven games over the Origin period, although they do get to face a Roosters side missing its Origin stars in Round 14.
There will be plenty of action at Penrith's Centrebet Stadium early on with five of the Panthers' first seven games at home. The Origin period could be where the Panthers make their move – all seven of their opponents over that period missed the finals in 2013. In fact they have a favourable draw in general, only having to play the Roosters, Rabbitohs and Sea Eagles once each during the regular season.
Souths will start and end the season with blockbuster matches against the Roosters once again. They'll be without Greg Inglis and any other Origin stars for three weeks in the middle of the season, with none of their byes coming before Origin games. They play three of their last four at ANZ Stadium before their Round 26 meeting with the tricolours at Allianz.
There will be pressure on Ricky Stuart's side early on with clashes against finals contenders North Queensland, Newcastle and South Sydney inside the first month of the campaign. They'll get to face the Cowboys again – this time minus their Origin stars – in Round 11, and have a fairly cruisy run home with five of their last seven at Canberra Stadium, including their "hoodoo" game against the Dragons and meetings with wooden spoon candidates the Tigers and Eels in the final fortnight.
The premiers play at home just three times in the first seven weeks – but at least get to host the World Club Challenge in 2014, lessening the usual impact of travel for the NRL champions. They face a potential nightmare run in the middle of the season where they'll be without their Origin stars for matches against the Bulldogs, Knights and Sharks, but have a great run home with six of their final nine games at Allianz Stadium. They'll get a couple of good tests ahead of the finals as well with match-ups against the Storm and Rabbitohs in Round 25 and 26.
Manly's first three games of 2014 – and six of their first eight – are home games, with half their games in the first two months of the season to be played on Sunday afternoons. They have byes ahead of the first two Origin games so should remain at full strength for most of the year, although they face a tough final stretch with six of their last eight games on the road.
Cronulla have one of the easiest draws in the competition, with just 11 games against top-eight sides from last season. They play both the Rabbitohs and Roosters in weekends preceding an Origin game, meaning all rep stars will be unavailable. Their run home will be arguably their toughest period, with four of their last five being away games.
Melbourne will play six of their first nine at home – a stretch that includes both their clashes with fierce rivals Manly – and have a fairly comfortable run in the dreaded mid-year period with two byes before Origin matches. They'll be tested after Origin though with five of their final seven games before the finals on the road, including visits to the Broncos, Knights and Roosters.
The Tigers have one of the toughest draws in the competition, with two matches against each of the Roosters, Rabbitohs and Sea Eagles. They'll at least get to face depleted teams in the pre-Origin rounds, with games against a Broncos team minus their Maroons stars in Round 11 and a Rabbitohs side without Greg Inglis in Roudn 14.
The Origin period will be the main talking point for the Titans. On the plus side: they get four straight games at Skilled Park from Round 11, with just one away game between Round 11 and Round 18. On the negative side: they don't get any byes directly before an Origin match, meaning they'll be without their Blues and Maroons stars for three games. They'll get the chance to assert their superiority over their Queensland rivals with games against both the Cowboys and Broncos inside the first six weeks.
The team with one of the toughest draws last season has one of the easiest this time around, with the Warriors only having to face the Roosters, Rabbitohs, Sea Eagles and Storm once each. They do have several tricky away trips early on, including away games in North Queensland in Round 3 and Melbourne in Round 8, but will spend most of the second half of the season at home and even get a bonus "away" game against the Bulldogs at Waikato Stadium in Round 10.