Scout Report: Round 17 teams wrap
NRL.com's Lone Scout analyses this week's big ins and outs for Holden NRL Fantasy.
- Official Round 17 team lists
- Injury list: The Round 17 casualty ward
- Suspensions: Latest from the NRL judiciary
Bulldogs v Sea Eagles, Friday night at ANZ Stadium
Bulldogs: Quite a reshuffle for the Dogs this week, with Josh Jackson and Michael Ennis forming a very makeshift halves combination in the absence of Blues brothers Josh Reynolds and Trent Hodkinson, while Damien Cook starts and hooker and Aidan Tolman returns from injury at prop. Jackson ($312,689) is probably playing for his spot in many Fantasy teams this week, coming off scores of 14 and 32 in recent weeks and unlikely to get through his usual workload again if he does play in the backline as named. James Graham ($342,073) is the only Bulldog to average better than 50 over the past three games. Winger Drury Low ($128,693) has a break even of -11.
Sea Eagles: Jack Littlejohn ($219,581) gets one last chance to make a bit more cash this week with Daly Cherry-Evans on Origin duty. Fellow cash cow Josh Starling ($209,852) is a sell after this week. Brett Stewart ($254,485) is not traditionally a good Fantasy scorer – he only passed the 40-point mark once between Round 1 and Round 12 – but in the past three weeks the Manly custodian has been on fire, stringing together scores of 44, 49 and 60. No guarantees he can keep it up but he's a decent priced point of difference if you're in the market for a fullback.
Dragons v Cowboys, Saturday at WIN Jubilee Oval
Dragons: Peter Mata'utia has been named to get another run at centre in place of Josh Dugan, although Dylan Farrell is on the bench and could be a late inclusion in the starting side. Dan Hunt is also back from injury on an extended bench. Gareth Widdop ($303,912) has settled into a strong run of scoring since Benji Marshall joined the Dragons, with Monday night's 66-point effort against his old club the Storm Widdop's best Fantasy return since scoring 76 in Round 1. Marshall himself has been more erratic, with two 58s and two scores less than 30 in his six games so far this season.
Cowboys: One-time Roosters next-big-thing Tautau Moga ($107,000) has switched clubs to the Cowboys and has been named at centre, with Matthew Wright ($164,391) shifting to fullback and Michael Morgan ($286,218) replacing Johnathan Thurston in the halves. Jason Taumalolo ($236,825) starts with Ethan Lowe ($284,562) named on the bench, and both are probably sells next week. Winger Curtis Rona ($185,914) will continue making cash for a while yet after impressing in Brent Tate's absence.
Roosters v Sharks, Saturday night at Allianz Stadium
Roosters: Cheapie Nene McDonald ($110,928) is back in the side in place of NSW winger Daniel Tupou, while Dylan Napa starts in the back row and Kane Evans and Remi Casty come onto the bench with Aidan Guerra and Boyd Cordner also on Origin duty. Jake Friend ($388,591) spent about 20 minutes on the bench last week due to the inclusion of fellow rake Heath L'Estrange on the bench, and his score dropped to an unspectacular 45 as a result. James Maloney ($338,922) remains a frustrating Fantasy player this year, with just 24 points last week, but he has still been great value over the bye rounds.
Sharks: Todd Carney is obviously a sell if you have him. Fa'amanu Brown ($142,178) is suddenly great value as Carney's replacement at five-eighth with a break even of 8. Bryce Gibbs and Tinirau Arona start this week in place of Blues Paul Gallen and Luke Lewis, with five new names (Sopoaga, Roqica, Robinson, Masima and Politoni) on an extended bench. Winger Jacob Gagan ($109,962) has a break even of 4. Gallen ($462,336) is a must-have this season with scores of 71, 92, 73 and 99 in his past four games.
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Wests Tigers v Panthers, Sunday afternoon at Leichhardt Oval
Tigers: Injuries hit the Tigers hard last week, with rising Fantasy star James Tedesco not expected back this season and Tim Simona and Suaso Sue also sidelined after a bruising encounter with the Raiders. Tedesco is a major blow for those Fantasy coaches who picked him up since his last injury. The injury doesn't even benefit those who kept hold of back-up fullback Kurtis Rowe, with Blake Austin being named in the No.1 jersey this week instead. Joel Luani and Martin Taupau will start in place of Robbie Farah and Aaron Woods.
Panthers: Cheapie Isaah Yeo is out with Kevin Naiqama replacing him in the backline, while Tyrone Peachey has again been named on the bench despite being a late inclusion in the starting side last week. James Segeyaro ($393,420) has been close to unstoppable of late, owners of Josh Mansour ($379,003) will be happy to see James McManus get the nod ahead of the bulldozing Panthers winger for NSW in Origin III. Jamal Idris ($262,556) produced five tackle busts and a try assist in his return to the side last week for a solid 39 points.
Rabbitohs v Titans, Monday night at ANZ Stadium
Rabbitohs: George Burgess was a late withdrawal on the weekend due to an ankle injury and has been left out of the side altogether this week, with the Rabbitohs set to play it safe and bring him back in Round 19 after next week's bye. Popular Fantasy centre Kirisome Auva'a has also been left out to return from his ankle injury in a couple of weeks. Apisai Koroisau ($206,265) is back in the starting side ahead of star No.9 Issac Luke, while Nathan Merritt replaces Greg Inglis at fullback and Ben Lowe and Jason Clark start in place of Chris McQueen and Ben Te'o. Lote Tuqiri has been named on the bench. Alex Johnston only just avoided a price drop on the weekend after scoring just 7, and is worth holding for one more week.
Titans: Paul Carter ($224,612) is back at lock while the Gold Coast's Origin trio are away. Daniel Mortimer ($117,535) has a break even of -13 and looks set to keep his spot in the halves despite the likely inclusion of Albert Kelly, who is on the extended bench and played the full 80 in Queensland Cup on the weekend. Mark Minichiello ($267,435) has scored 69 and 59 in the Titans' past couple of games since being moved into the starting side.