What to expect from your NRL side in 2013

mcklaren_95 Roar Rookie

By mcklaren_95, mcklaren_95 is a Roar Rookie


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    Looking at the performances of each team this year in the NRL, every team showed the ability to convert their opportunities and each club had their ups and downs throughout 2012.

    With preseason training under way and club transfers completed, which team will dominate in 2013?

    North Queensland Cowboys
    I’m a bit biased as I’m a diehard Cowboys supporter but, even so, I don’t see a premiership heading north in 2013. The Cowboys have a good roster, but struggle to travel and, unless they can win seven to eight away games, they will not threaten teams like Manly and Canterbury come finals time.

    Brisbane Broncos
    The ever-persistent Broncos need someone to take charge if they are to string a consistent season together in 2013. Scott Prince may be that man, but he isn’t guaranteed a spot says coach Anthony Griffin.

    If the Broncos can push all season, they must be at top form come finals and will be desperate for a top-four finish.

    Gold Coast Titans
    The financially troubled Titans need to keep their head in the game if they want to play finals in 2013. They may have the strongest back row in the competition (or at least a close second to the Sharks) but without Prince they will struggle to score points.

    The opportunity for Albert Kelly to become a top class halfback may work, but his inexperience won’t get them there in 2013 without some help from the forward back.

    Newcastle Knights
    With the super-coach in-charge in 2012, the Knights couldn’t trouble the top eight until it was too late.

    Jarrod Mullen was tested in trying to provide room for star backs Uate and Boyd with no luck, but the return of Kurt Gidley in 2013 may just give the Knights that edge to be in the fight for the premiership. Still, they strike me as finishing just outside the top four in 2013.

    Manly Sea Eagles
    No Des Hasler, no worries. The Sea Eagles have shown they can win when needed, no matter who is coach. With the addition of Andrew Johns to the coaching staff, Manly are set to continue improving in 2013.

    The loss of Tony Williams among others will hurt Manly, but the Northern Beaches will be up there again if their halves of Daly Cherry-Evans and Kieran Foran can stay fit.

    Sydney Roosters
    New coach, new season will be the focus for the boys from Bondi.

    Young halfback Mitchell Pierce can lead the charge back to the finals but, like the Manly halves, the Roosters need him to stay fit. An injury to Pierce could create a hole in the Roosters, who only have an inconsistent Daniel Mortimer to replace him.

    If James Maloney finds the form of 2010 and Pierce finds his of 2009, the Roosters will be the team to beat in 2013.

    Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
    2012’s grand finalists will be hoping to go one better. With the purchase of Tony Williams and the brilliance of Ben Barba, the Bulldogs for me go in pre-season favourites.

    Des Hasler will create the new competition standard and will pressure other clubs to copy their style of play.

    South Sydney Rabbitohs
    South Sydney showed in 2012 they can play finals football. One of the oldest clubs in the NRL, Souths supporters were pleased with 2012, but they didn’t win enough games against top eight teams to be competitive come finals time.

    Souths came out of their shell after moving Inglis to fullback and if he can play the way he did in 2012, the Bunnies are in there to break their premiership drought.

    Wests Tigers
    Sheens gone, Potter in. The Tigers will need to lift if they want to play finals again in 2013. At the start of the year they were favourites but they failed to capitalize on the chances they got, resulting in them missing the eight and action was required to sort out the mess.

    Sheens still being involved may hurt the Tigers, but with Potter in charge they must focus on the future and if Marshall fires, 2013 may be the year of the Orange and Black.

    Penrith Panthers
    Lucky to miss out on last place, Penrith should have done better in 2012. Ivan Cleary and Phil Gould wouldn’t be pleased with the team’s performance.

    The move from fullback to five-eighth by Lachlan Coote may have been the best decision for the Panthers, allowing Cootes’ kicking game to be used more often and gave them a more competitive edge at the end of the season.

    The outside backs at the Panthers can change a game in a blink. If the team plays with confidence in 2013, they should push for a finals berth.

    Parramatta Eels
    The wooden spoon may be what saves the Eels from total disaster. 2012 forced the Eels board into action and on the receiving end was Steven Kearney, but brought the end result of the return of Ricky Stuart to the NRL.

    After seeing a confident Blues squad in 2012, my opinion of Stuart has changed. He has great determination for success and if he pushes the Eels for results, I believe within the next three years Parramatta will be premiership contenders.

    Cronulla Sharks
    The Shire had a great year in 2012, Todd Carney finally held himself together and got away from the pressures of Sydney and focused on his football.

    The purchases of Chris Heighington and Luke Lewis will provide a stand in the back row, creating spaces for their quick outside backs. Paul Gallen continues to grow as a captain and in 2013 will only improve more as a leader.

    Canberra Raiders
    The Raiders flew under the radar in 2012. An injury to captain Terry Campese looked to knock them out of contention but the never say die attitude of a younger halves pairing of Sam Williams and Josh McCrone got them through to the finals.

    With the return of their captain, the Raiders will need more consistency and a top-four spot to win the premiership in 2013.

    New Zealand Warriors
    Across the ditch sees a team that needs to focus on football and not on other things. The Warriors potential was left in the past in 2012, with the team finding ways to throw away wins. In 2011 they were grand finalists, in 2012 they fell apart leading to a sacking of their coach and a change at the club.

    In 2013, with Matt Elliot in charge, the Warriors will need their players to keep fit, and look at purchasing a half to lead the team after the loss of James Maloney.

    To me they won’t be far off the top eight but won’t be there until they sort out the halves and spend some money on more top class players.

    Melbourne Storm
    The premiers. After being stripped of the ‘07 and ‘09 premierships, Melbourne finally got one back. The big three will yet again be the key for Melbourne in 2013 and if they fire and stay fit, the trophy cabinet will be a little bit fuller again.

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    The Crowd Says (16)

    • November 13th 2012 @ 5:16am
      Steve said | November 13th 2012 @ 5:16am | ! Report

      What’s happened to saints no mention

      • Roar Guru

        November 13th 2012 @ 7:48am
        Dogs Of War said | November 13th 2012 @ 7:48am | ! Report

        Not really worth talking about I suspect.

      • November 13th 2012 @ 11:33am
        james said | November 13th 2012 @ 11:33am | ! Report

        article title is “what to expect from your nrl side in 2013” and the author didn’t mention the Saints. even for a Dragons support surely you can put 2 + 2 together : P

        I put the dragons and tigers in the same basket for next year. some talent sprinkled through the team but not top 8 material. both rebuilding atm.

        • November 14th 2012 @ 1:30pm
          NickF said | November 14th 2012 @ 1:30pm | ! Report

          James I agree with you. I am a Dragons supporter. Here is the preview

          St George Illawarra
          No new signings except for Gerard Beale, but losses in the forwards and big loss of Ben Hornby the experienced skipper.
          Newbie coach Steve Price has not picked up where Wayne Bennett left off, in fact the team has gone backwards, with one of the lowest try count in the NRL. I can’t see a good year for the Dragons in 2013, one for the true believers.

    • November 13th 2012 @ 7:55am
      Manly Man said | November 13th 2012 @ 7:55am | ! Report

      Definitely not the most exciting team. Yaaaawn.

      Comment left via The Roar’s iPhone app. Download it now [http://itunes.apple.com/au/app/the-roar/id327174726?mt=8].

    • November 13th 2012 @ 8:54am
      Will Sinclair said | November 13th 2012 @ 8:54am | ! Report

      Mitchell Pierce?

      He’s the son of a great – Wayne PEARCE!

      • November 13th 2012 @ 1:59pm
        Rixy said | November 13th 2012 @ 1:59pm | ! Report

        Also, Mortimer may not be the best half going around but i dont know may clubs which would have a better back up option? Trent Hodgkinson maybe?

        • Roar Guru

          November 13th 2012 @ 2:15pm
          Dogs Of War said | November 13th 2012 @ 2:15pm | ! Report

          I would be surprised if Hodgkinson isn’t starting for the Bulldogs if we keep him. He offers more than Keating, plus it will mean a little change in style which could take other teams by surprise.

    • November 13th 2012 @ 10:19am
      Ads said | November 13th 2012 @ 10:19am | ! Report

      Western Suburbs Magpies – I expect they won’t exist anymore…

    • November 13th 2012 @ 10:51am
      Kerry Edwards said | November 13th 2012 @ 10:51am | ! Report

      our knights r going all the way this year
      I’ll .be at all the homer games red & blue it’s in me
      how about you go knights go 2013 premiers

      • Roar Guru

        November 13th 2012 @ 11:29am
        Cameron Kellett said | November 13th 2012 @ 11:29am | ! Report

        If the Knights have the patience and ability to listen to Wayne Bennett then I honestly think they will be in the finals for sure. Though just because Wayne Bennett is in charge does not always mean a team will win, it will help though, especially when the chips are down. I think the competition will be a lot more even and close next season.

      • November 14th 2012 @ 1:24pm
        NickF said | November 14th 2012 @ 1:24pm | ! Report

        Will you be at the Manly games supporting Joey Johns?

        • Roar Guru

          November 14th 2012 @ 7:03pm
          Cameron Kellett said | November 14th 2012 @ 7:03pm | ! Report

          I don’t like manly or knights, and Andrew johns is another kettle of fish. Just thought knights may have a fairly decent chance this season.

    • November 13th 2012 @ 11:39am
      PGNEWC said | November 13th 2012 @ 11:39am | ! Report

      Im a Newie follower too KE but with Beau Scott being the only big new signing, a clear out of players like Junior Seau and joel Edwards plus the inevitable breakdown of Mullens or Gidley or both Im a bit worried –I think we need more depth and someone to cover the halves. Plus Tinklers cash flow problems doesnt fill me with confidence.

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