It’s finally footy time! I’d be excited about Titans v Warriors after two whole months off, but Broncos and Eels are just about the most watchable teams right now, and this should be electric. Well done to the NRL!


Let’s dive right in and break down this MASSIVE $40,000 Draftstars slate. I’ll run through the options at each position to give you a feel for where you can find great value, and where you can differentiate from the field. 


A reminder if you have not played NRL DFS before or looking to brush up on your fantasy game make sure you check out our helper articles.




Market Odds

Broncos 1.90, Eels 1.90. The bookies can’t split these two teams, so all angles are in play for building lineups. Currently as of Wednesday morning the Total Points Over/Under is at 40.5


Weather Forecast

Sunny Day in Brisbane into a cool evening with very light wind. Perfect for footy!


Check out Smatho's thoughts in our mini preview below



Fantasy Plays

WFB: Starting with the Eels, my projections for the back three are very similar, so I’ll be focusing on the cheaper Clint Gutherson $8,210 and Blake Ferguson $8,640 and using far less of Maika Sivo $10,580. The Broncos back 3 is a little different, with Jamayne Isaako’s $8,900 goal kicking and involvement giving him a scoring edge over volatile scorers Corey Oates $7,340 and Jesse Arthars $7,000. I lean towards Isaako and use the other two as punt plays who need a try or two. I think all of the options are in play, so this is a spot that can be decided after you’ve built the rest of your lineup.


CTR: Kotoni Staggs $11,230 has been too cheap to start the season but Draftstars have bumped him all the way to $11k. The kid can play but he is pretty expensive for a Centre. That’s not to say that Michael Jennings $8,420 and Waqa Blake $7,780 are bad plays if you want to differentiate here, and both can easily return value if things go their way. If you want to play old man Darius Boyd at the minimum $7,000, I can’t stop you, but I can’t see him doing it twice in a row after a decent game in Rd 2.


HALF: The likely value here is Dylan Brown $10,080, although his price did rise after a massive 86 in Rd 2. The question is do you need to use him when you could take the huge scoring potential of Mitchell Moses $15,120 or Anthony Milford $14,100, who both score 50s for fun. The answer might depend on whether your team contains Payne Haas, but more on that soon. Brodie Croft $11,880 is the other option, and while I rank him 4th for value, he’s not far behind the others at all.


2RF: Jamil Hopoate $9,990 is a nobody right now, but he’s a starting 2RF and they play big minutes with very few exceptions. I don’t see how you can pass up his value. Patrick Carrigan $13,770 had his salary bumped up for his brilliant 60 minute role in the middle of the field. 2RF sorted. If Alex Glenn $10,700 and Joe Ofahengaue $10,330 are hovering around the $10,000 mark and both are worth consideration. Shaun Lane $11,490 is the first Eel I would consider using as a pivot from Carrigan (or use Carrigan at FRF), he has similar scoring potential for a similar price. Marata Niukore $9,320 could be a great play starting at lock where I expect 50+ minutes and 40+ points. Ryan Matterson $14,600 isn’t bad value as such, but there might be better places to spend your money. Peri Terepo $8,130 could be a sneaky bench play if you want to take a punt on someone that can score 40+ if things fall his way.


HOK: Andrew McCullough heading off to the Knights has flipped the script on the hooker position. It now looks like Jake Turpin $11,230 will have a chance to play 80 minutes, while Reed Mahoney $14,040 will get a rest coming back from injury. Turpin is cheaper than Mahoney as he was in Rd 2, it’s an easy decision.


FRF: Other than Carrigan, the value here is Thomas Flegler $11,180 (but beware Matt Lodge $13,170 being a late inclusion and messing up his minutes), and the big points are obviously coming from Payne Haas $19,170, who is still a good play at a big price if he can get to around 70 points (as he often does). The Eels duo of Reagan Campbell-Gillard $9,750 and Junior Paulo $12,600 are hard to split for value, but they’re both well behind the Broncos options. Kane Evans $8,640 is the only bench prop I’d consider taking a punt on.


Final Word: As I see it the wide open positions on this slate are at WFB and HLF. If you can find a way to play Moses or Milford with Haas you will have your best chance at a unique lineup build, but it won’t be easy. Good luck with your lineups, back your gut, and be sure to enjoy having some top notch sport back on our screens.



Always remember to gamble responsibly. When the fun stops, stop. If gambling is having a negative impact on your life, seek support at Gambling Help Online.  18+ only.