Scout Report: Round 13 teams wrap
James Graham, Paul Gallen and Billy Slater are among the big names back in action this weekend, while Corey Parker gets a rest. All 16 NRL clubs are back in action this week, meaning most Fantasy sides can be close to full-strength.
Rookie Broncos hooker Matt Parcell has been added to NRL Fantasy, while Aaron Gray, Dane Gagai, Peta Hiku, Jeremy Hawkins and Sione Mata'utia have all become dual position players available at both centre and winger/fullback.
Here's this week's big team news.
Broncos v Sea Eagles
Broncos: Maroons Justin Hodges and Sam Thaiday return after being rested last week, but this week it's Corey Parker's turn to get a rest between Origin clashes. It's a blow for a lot of NRL Fantasy coaches, but he should be back and scoring big next week. Lachlan Maranta is pushed out by Hodges' return, with Jordan Kahu moving back to the wing. Ben Hunt and Andrew McCullough keep hitting those big scores and are keepers, while Jack Reed looks a bit of a trap despite a negative break even this week – having scored three tries in the past fortnight.
Sea Eagles: Feleti Mateo returns for James Hasson in Manly's only change this week. Daly Cherry-Evans looks set to return after Manly's Round 14 bye. With scores of 63, 2 and 41, Tom Trbojevic has had a mixed start to his Fantasy career but like any winger relies heavily on tries to boost his scores, so is a risky buy at $189,000. Blake Leary's minutes dropped from 80 to 51 on the weekend with Tom Symonds playing the bulk of the game in the forwards, now that Jamie Lyon is filling in at five-eighth.
Wests Tigers v Titans
Wests Tigers: David Nofoaluma replaces the injured Tim Simona in the centres while Aaron Woods is back in the side as captain for the first time, in the absence of the injured Robbie Farah. Keith Galloway returns on the bench, bumping out Brenden Santi. Popular cash cow Kyle Lovett is also on the bench, with Chris Lawrence starting in the back row.
Titans: Dave Taylor is named to start after moving to the bench last week, with Ben Ridge back to the interchange, while Mark Ioane replaces Matthew White on the bench. Lachlan Burr played just 50 minutes at lock after back-to-back 80-minute performances, in a blow for his Fantasy owners. Burr also dropped the ball over the line in what could have been a match-saving try late in the game and had a whopping nine missed tackles, but he still got a $21,000 price rise and has a low break even again this week. Ryan James has yet again probably hit his peak, but I'll be holding him for a couple of weeks with the Titans one of the teams playing in Round 14.
Knights v Raiders
Knights: Captain Kurt Gidley is back at halfback, with Tyrone Roberts out for a couple of weeks with an ankle injury. Kade Snowden is also back, with Korbin Sims moving back to the bench and Joseph Tapine dropping out. The team may be struggling but Dane Gagai had a big game at fullback on the weekend with 76 points, and is now a dual position player with a break even of 18.
Raiders: Jordan Rapana is back on the wing, with Sisa Waqa shifting to centre and Jarrad Kennedy back to the bench. Shaun Fensom has played big minutes in the past couple of weeks and the big scores have followed, but his minutes might drop again now that Kennedy is back in the forward rotation rather than filling in for Rapana in the backline. A surprising number of people are apparently considering selling Iosia Soliola, but he is a definite keeper in the centres.
Rabbitohs v Warriors
Rabbitohs: No changes for the Souths 17 this week, although Ben Lowe and rookie centre John Olive have joined the extended bench. George Burgess is again named to come off the bench, but he outscored brother Tom (who started on the weekend) 42 to 37 anyway. Those who've held onto Chris Grevsmuhl were rewarded with a two-try effort off the bench, but don't expect that to happen too often. Nathan Brown has emerged as a cash cow option, scoring 41 last week and holding his place in the starting side.
Warriors: Nathan Friend has again been named to start, despite being benched behind Siliva Havili before kick-off on the weekend. He did still get a $10K price rise and will get another one this week if he scores more than 17. Shaun Johnson has had a superb turnaround this season – he didn't score a single 50 before Round 7 but has hit at least 50 every game since then, including back-to-back 70s in his last two games. Bodene Thompson also hasn't scored less than 50 since Round 5 and is a genuine point-of-difference buy in the back row.
Panthers v Storm
Panthers: Matt Moylan is out until about Round 19 with an ankle injury and Robert Jennings has a hamstring injury, with Dallin Watene-Zelezniak moving to fullback while Dean Whare returns in the centres and Waqa Blake shifts to the wing. Elijah Taylor remains a rock solid option in the back row after making a typically impressive 57 tackles on the weekend.
Storm: Billy Slater has been named at fullback in Melbourne's only change to their 17, although there are seven names on an extended bench. Cameron Smith is having a bit of mid-season lull by his usual standards, despite not having much of a rest yet over the Origin period, but he's obviously a keeper. Likewise, Tohu Harris hasn't scored a 50 since Round 7 but is still a hold at this stage.
Sharks v Roosters
Sharks: Paul Gallen is back at last, bumping Jayson Bukuya to the bench. Chris Heighington is also back in the 17, while Sosaia Feki and Ricky Leutele are named on an extended bench after recovering from their injuries. Andrew Fifita has been in super Fantasy form, but his scores might drop a little with fellow workhorse Gallen back in the pack. Jack Bird keeps going strong.
Roosters: No changes this week after thrashing the Storm on Monday. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck is a eating up run metres for fun at the back and his average score this season is nudging 50. Sio Siua Teukeiaho has peaked, although the Roosters do play in Round 14 so could be worth holding until then for overall points.
Bulldogs v Dragons
Bulldogs: Moses Mbye is in the centres again in good news for Michael Lichaa's long-term prospects as an 80-minute hooker, while James Graham is back from his knee injury. Aiden Tolman has been a strong performer this season but his workload could drop a little with Graham back.
Dragons: Joel Thompson is back from his hamstring injury, bumping Jake Marketo out of the 17. Tyson Frizell and Trent Merrin are both still keepers despite scores in the low 30s at last start, while Josh Dugan is in sensational form.
Eels v Cowboys
Eels: David Gower returns on the bench as Joseph Paulo drops out, while Junior Paulo has taken the starting prop spot from Danny Wicks. Nathan Peats remains a great bye-round purchase as long as he doesn't sneak into Robbie Farah's NSW No.9 jersey.
Cowboys: Rory Kostjasyn is added to an otherwise unchanged side this week. Matt Scott stunned everybody with his 105 on the weekend, but he's not a must-buy. Jason Taumalolo is probably a keeper now. Lachlan Coote, Michael Morgan and Johnathan Thurston continue to excel, while Sam Hoare has a break even of 4.