Boasting a crop of workhorse middle forwards, one of the league's best playmakers and a former Origin star at a cheap price, Cronulla could be the destination of a few promising Fantasy targets in 2021.
Players to watch
One of the Fantasy success stories of 2020, Rudolf started the season as a $228k rookie and lifted his value by more than $300k by the end of the year with an average of 40 points per game.
The middle forward scored well regardless of whether he started the game or came off the bench, and there's good reason to expect further improvement this season.
For one thing, he's now got a year of NRL experience under his belt and has shown he can rack up 50 points in base stats on his day, and for another, he looms as an increasingly vital member of a Sharks pack that features experienced but ageing big men like Aaron Woods, Andrew Fifita and Aiden Tolman.
2021 NRL Fantasy Price announcement - Shaun Johnson
On the lookout for a middle forward who can get you 55 points a game without help from attacking stats, and who was only in one per cent of teams last season? Tolman could be your man. The former Bulldog is a workhorse and the kind of player who racks up strong Fantasy scores on a regular basis.
He averaged 54 last season, making a whopping 232 metres and 46 tackles in 71 minutes in his final game for Canterbury. The only concern will be game time, especially if he comes off the bench and finds himself in a battle for minutes with the likes of Braden Hamlin-Uele, Woods, Rudolf and Fifita.
Analysing the Sharks' 2021 draw
Let's get the risky stuff out of the way first – Moylan's injury record is not good. He played eight games last year and 11 the year before and has only played more than 20 games in three of his eight NRL seasons so far.
His Fantasy scoring hasn't been stunning lately either – in his five 80-minute appearances in 2020 he scored just 28 points a game.
So why is Moylan in this list? The potential upside.
A former NSW Origin representative, Moylan starts 2021 priced as a 23-point player – the best value he's been since his rookie season – and well below the 33 average he posted in his most recent full season (2018) and his career-best average of 41.
With a starting price of $310,000 all he'd need to do is score in the 30s to be a handy money-maker in the halves, and if he can get back to something like his best he could be a genuine cash cow.
The Sharks’ 2020 season review
Cronulla wouldn't have played finals football last year without the attacking nous of Johnson, who led the league in try assists and had his best Fantasy season since 2017.
Now in his 30s, Johnson is no longer quite the ball-running threat he once was (he averaged about one tackle break per game in 2020, having made more than two per game in previous years).
But he's made up for it with improved playmaking in attacking positions – his 23 try assists last year was easily the best return of his career – and he delivers strong base stats in kick metres, run metres and tackles without the errors that plagued his early years in the NRL.
The catch? An achilles injury is set to keep him sidelined for the first couple of months of the season, meaning he'll be one to keep an eye out for mid-year.
2021 NRL Fantasy player prices
Aiden Tolman MID $725,000
Shaun Johnson HLF $722,000
Briton Nikora EDG $626,000
Blayke Brailey HOK $595,000
Aaron Woods MID $586,000
Siosifa Talakai EDG $545,000
Toby Rudolf MID $545,000
Andrew Fifita MID $541,000
Wade Graham EDG $541,000
Sione Katoa WFB $540,000
Braden Hamln-Uele MID $492,000
Chad Townsend HLF $446,000
Ronaldo Mulitalo WFB $433,000
Jesse Ramien CTR $431,000
Mawene Hiroti WFB $400,000
Josh Dugan CTR $393,000
Jack Williams MID $380,000
William Kennedy WFB $377,000
Royce Hunt MID $360,000
Matt Moylan HLF, WFB $310,000
Connor Tracey HLF $304,000
Braydon Trindall HLF $303,000
Teig Wilton EDG $292,000
Billy Magoulias MID $278,000
Nene Macdonald WFB $253,000
Franklin Pele MID $228,000
Jack A Williams HLF $228,000
Jensen Taumoepeau CTR $228,000
Kyle Patterson HOK $228,000