NRL Fantasy

A massive Thursday night NRL matchup between the Broncos and the Panthers at Suncorp Stadium, as two of the top three teams go head-to-head. The Panthers will be hoping for revenge, after the Broncos stunned the Premiers at home in round 1 winning 13-12. There’s plenty of talent on display for both teams, so let’s dig in and try and find the value for our DFS teams.

Draftstars has a massive $15,000 guaranteed contest for the first game of the round, with the winner set to pocket a cool $1,133. With several other contests available, including a qualifier for the $750,000 AFL Star Final, there’s a contest for everyone, so get involved and make this game even more interesting.


Team News

The Broncos are reeling, with the loss of Adam Reynolds (concussion) for this huge clash. Reynolds is replaced by Jock Madden at halfback. No other changes expected for the Brisbane squad.

The Panthers remain unchanged, after their massive victory over the Roosters in round 11.

Betting Markets

Brisbane Broncos ($3.10) vs Penrith Panthers ($1.37)

Points total – 39.5 points

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Early money was for the Panthers after their impressive display last week against the Roosters. Since the news of Reynolds’ missing out, the floodgates have opened, with the Panthers bet up to 8.5-point favourites. It’s a massive jump, but the loss of Reynolds cannot be understated. If the Panthers attack can play like they did last week, this could get ugly, however I’m not convinced their attack is fully clicking. The Broncos have a good chance at covering this number, however I’ll wait until the last minute as this will keep getting bet up.

Love It – Kotoni Staggs - $10,940

Uh, this feels bad to say, but Staggs could be a solid point of difference to your squad this week. He was in our hated column last week, and whilst Staggs didn’t light the world on fire, he didn’t fail, with a solid 37.3 score with no tries. This is a play against his opponent in this contest, Tyrone Peachey. Peachey isn’t as strong or agile as he once was, and desperately needs the likes of Hosking, Luai and Turuva to assist him defensively. I see the Broncos attacking this side of the field every chance they get, and a Staggs try or two wouldn’t surprise.

Love It – Nathan Cleary - $24,530

Tough not to pick Cleary here. With Adam Reynolds out, Cleary is the only genuine top shelf option at half/hooker in this game. Despite taking a back seat to Luai last week, Cleary still managed a score of 81, just 9 short of Luai’s score, despite Luai having a blinder. It’s a huge outlay, but with a realistic floor in the mid 50’s, to a ceiling of 100+, it’s hard not to have Cleary in your team this week.

Love It – James Fisher-Harris - $15,810

JFH is excellent value in this spot. If we take out his injury-effected 19 against the Raiders, Fisher-Harris is averaging 53.2 points per game this season. When comparing this to similar forwards in this slate, we see Patrick Carrigan and Zac Hosking averaging similar scores, however they are both priced $2000-$2500 more than the raging Panthers forward. His minutes will continue to creep up as he gains match fitness, and he gets through far more work than he is given credit for. Yet to fully hit his straps this season, but is still terrific value here for a mid-priced play.

Hate It – Reece Walsh - $17,790

The Broncos fullback was in our ‘love it’ list last week, and he rewarded owners with a fantastic 65.6 points in a losing effort. Whilst there’s every chance Walsh will again score big, I trust the Panthers defence to shut him down. Without the fear of Adam Reynolds, the Panthers will surely be able to zone-in on the boom fullback, and limit his attacking opportunities. Walsh has been impressive this season, and this could bite me, but I’ll rely on the Panthers defence almost every time.

Hate It – Scott Sorensen - $14,300

This one hurts. I never like to say a bad word about my man crush, however, I will be terribly surprised if Sorensen is able to match his tremendous performance from last week. Soro was in everything last week, scoring two tries on his way to a phenomenal 86.4. Like Walsh above, I expect Sorensen’s opponent to be homing in on the powerful backrower, and making sure he isn’t able to have another performance like last week. Expecting a high 30’s score here, so not horrible, but this is more a warning for those players who believe Sorensen will once again score huge.

Who Knows – Jarome Luai - $13,010

Luai, despite having a slow start to the season by his standards, has been unbelievably consistent in DFS for a five eighth. His first 9 scores were grouped between 31.7 and 47.4. Then, last week, Luai went to another gear, scoring 90.1 on the back of a try, 2 line-breaks, 2 line-break assists, and 2 try assists. It was a phenomenal performance, and one that has pushed him ahead of Nicho Hynes for the Blues 6 jersey. Can Luai put on another masterclass this week, or will he be back towards the 30-40 type score of the opening 9 rounds? Time will tell.

Draftstars Suggested Lineup



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