In a series analysing who will line up in each position for all 16 teams in the opening round of the Telstra Premiership in 2021, NRL.com looks at the Sydney Roosters.
NRL.com says: Coach Trent Robinson said Victor Radley won't play in round one but Sam Verrills is still racing the clock after both suffered ACL ruptures during the 2020 season.
If neither makes round one then the last bench spot if a toss-up between Hutchison as a utility or another forward such as Daniel Fifita.
Co-captain Boyd Cordner is set to miss the start of the season after a series of head knocks so Sitili Tupouniua is likely to kick off the year in the run-on side in the second row.
Sam Walker shapes as the long-term halves option but may not quite be NRL-ready yet - Lachlan Lam looks set to start the season at five-eighth with Luke Keary moving into the No.7 jersey. Hutchison and off-season recruit Adam Keighran are other playmaking options.
Jamie Soward says: Their depth has taken a bit of a hit over the last three years. There are question marks over the halves duo but Lam will get the start. Walker will push for a start but they have an abundance of talent.
Fully fit their 1-20 is the best in the comp. They'll have to have a worst-case scenario plan for the back row if Cordner needs an extended break but this is a side I'm expecting to compete for another title.
Roosters in 2021
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