Parramatta Eels v Wests Tigers @ Bankwest Stadium – 7:50 AEST
First Try-Scorer: Billy Walters – $41
Billy Walters (BetEasy – $41) retains his spot beside Benji Marshall in the halves and presents as an interesting try-scorer option. He’s running up against one of the best defences in the NRL, however, the Eels right side is the most vulnerable area of their defensive line. Per Stats Insider’s ‘Try Location Analysis‘, 65% of the 20 tries Parramatta has conceded this season have come through their right edge. Walters is a keen runner of the football. If he can’t break the line with his running game, his effort-levels put him in positions to score. Just as it did last week:
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Shaun Lane ($11,090), Michael Chee Kam ($9,000)
Draftstars players picked the right week to fade Shaun Lane as he scored 32.9 points with just 18% ownership in Round 10, down from his 31% average. However, our predictive model suggests picking him back up this week with a projected score of 49 points. He runs up against what is still a questionable Wests Tigers right-edge defence this week with Dylan Brown able to play his more natural game down the left side upon Mitchell Moses’ return.
Michael Chee Kam is a must-play at his $9,000 price. Named to start for the first time this season, he’s projected to score 40 points.
DFS Fade: Russell Packer ($10,230)
While plenty will be encouraged by Russell Packer’s 44.8 points last week, our predictive model projects him to score just 34 points on Thursday night. He’s worth considering as a fade option in this one.
North Queensland Cowboys v Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles @ Queensland Country Bank Stadium – 6 pm AEST
First Try-Scorer: Francis Molo – $91, Cade Cust – $26
The Cowboys right-edge defence is the worst in the NRL at the halfway point of the season. As a ball-runner and fairly prolific try-scorer for a young five-eighth, Cade Cust ($26 – BetEasy) deserves consideration here. The Sea Eagles left side is sure to play a major role in their attack on the night.
As a smokey option, Francis Molo ($91 – SportsBet) starts his fourth consecutive game in the front row this week. He’s proven to be an effective ball-carrier this season to average 121 running metres per game. With Jason Taumalolo attracting so much attention, Molo is an appealing option for the Cowboys close to the line.
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Jake Trbojevic ($14,250), Shane Wright ($10,290)
The 50+ streak continues for Jake Trbojevic. Suggested as a play last week, the Sea Eagles lock cashed in with 51.9 points to make that the seventh consecutive week he’s hit the half-century mark. And it’s back to the well this week, too. Our predictive model projects Trbojevic to crack it again with a projected score of 58 points.
Shane Wright is also a picture of consistency, although, it’s not always good. With a projected score of 44 points this week, it fits his fluctuating form of 30.4 points, 49.9 points, 30.2 points, 43.5 points and 35.6 points across his last five matches. He’s a strong value consideration at $10,290.
DFS Fade: Reece Robson ($14,730)
Reece Robson posted a monster 97.9 points in Round 9 leading to a 52% ownership rate in Round 10. He only managed 32.6 points last week. Projected to score 48 points on Friday night, he’s a fade option at $14,730.
Brisbane Broncos v Melbourne Storm @ Suncorp Stadium – 7:55 pm AEST
First Try-Scorer: Kotoni Staggs – $23, Brenko Lee – $14
The Brisbane Broncos need a spark and Kotoni Staggs ($23 – TopSport) is their guy. Forget for a moment that he might be the worst defensive centre in the NRL. He’s a potential try-scorer for us today and will be desperate to make his mark on this struggling outfit. With five tries in four games this season, the Broncos have missed the 21-year-old over the last five weeks. Expect him to see the ball early.
If the Melbourne Storm right-side attack from last week is anything to go by, Brenko Lee ($14 – SportsBet) is a moral. Cameron Smith tormented the defence; first by setting up Nelson Asofa-Solomona in on a goal line block play out of dummy half, and second by using that same shape to bring the defence in before Lee went over the line untouched. Look for Smith to try something similar against a poor Broncos defence.
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Cameron Smith ($15,920), Kenneath Bromwich ($10,360)
It’s not often that you see Cameron Smith here given his huge price tag, but the veteran hooker is playing that well at the moment. He’s pulling teams apart from dummy half and hung 83.1 points on the Titans last week. With the Storm expected to put a few points on the Broncos and Smith to kick goals, he’s projected to score 68 points in another masterclass.
While the right side dominated last week, it’s the Storm left side that looks to be the source of points on Friday. Brisbane’s right side defence has been a turnstile all season. A strong enough ball-carrier and underrated ball-player, Kenny Bromwich shapes as an option in the back row with a projected score of 43 points at $10,360.
DFS Fade: Anthony Milford
Our predictive model isn’t expecting much from Anthony Milford despite his switch to fullback. Projected to score just 33 points, give him a week in the number one jersey before picking him up.
New Zealand Warriors v Sydney Roosters @ Sunshine Coast Stadium – 3 pm AEST
First Try-Scorers: Eli Katoa – $56
He started off the bench last week so it’s best to confirm lineups an hour before kickoff, but Eli Katoa ($56 – BetEasy) shapes as an appealing roughie. The Warriors need to start this one strong if they’re to be any chance at even keeping it close. We’re going to get a good idea of how this game will go inside ten minutes. If the Warriors fire up early, they’ll be looking to their left edge to turn that fire into points. With Kodi Nikorima sure to be involved and his developing combination with Katoa, the young backrower is a good chance to get one past the best defence in the NRL.
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Jack Hetherington ($8,500), Jazz Tevaga ($12,810)
The two new starters in the Warriors middle will have a lot of work to do on Saturday afternoon. Jack Hetherington starts at prop and after scoring 36.6 points in 57 minutes last week, is projected to score 40 points in this one. Meanwhile, workhorse lock forwad Jazz Tevaga’s projected score of 53 points might only be the start. He will go searching for work and could end up playing the full 80 minutes. While his ownership is sure to increase after last week’s 70.5 points, Tevaga is still a good value option.
DFS Fade: Brett Morris ($13,180)
Plenty will be playing for the Roosters to pile up points with Brett Morris likely to be at the forefront. However, our predictive model projects him to score just 44 points, which at $13,180, is on the pricey side.
Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks v St George-Illawarra Dragons @ Netstrata Jubilee Stadium – 5:30 pm AEST
First Try-Scorers: Ronaldo Mulitalo – $10
With so much of the focus on the right side while Shaun Johnson leads the NRL in try assists (15) and Sione Katoa in tries (10), Ronaldo Mulitalo ($10 – SportsBet) carries some value out on the left flank. He’s scored eight tries in his 13-game career, scored two in the week he fell to injury and returned to cross the line against the Warriors in Round 10. He has some lazy tendencies in defence and isn’t always the most willing ball-runner in hard sets, but Mulitalo knows how to find the line. He’s a great scoring chance with 53% of the tries the Dragons have conceded so far this season coming through their right side.
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Wade Graham ($9,700)
Wade Graham isn’t playing his best football at the moment. However, with the Dragons right side struggling defensively and Zac Lomax fifth in try causes with 11 for the season already, Graham has an excellent opportunity to play himself into form. The State of Origin forward is one of the best back rowers in the competition. A dip in production doesn’t change that. With our predictive model projecting him to score 44 points on Saturday, expect to see Graham start returning to his best.
DFS Fade: Zac Lomax ($12,740)
If Graham does play up to the standard we’re expecting, that spells danger for Zac Lomax. He’s going to be up against it trying to keep a lid on Graham without predictive model projecting Lomax to score 40 points. Consider other options.
Canberra Raiders v South Sydney Rabbitohs @ GIO Stadium – 7:35 pm AEST
First Try-Scorers: Elliott Whitehead – $26
Rugby league defence relies on communication and cohesion as much as it does physically making a tackle. While the Rabbitohs juggle their centres, wingers and back rowers due to injuries and subsequent reshuffles, they open themselves up to defeisve lapses. With the form Jack Wighton is in and his combination with Elliott Whitehead ($26 – Neds), expect to see the Englishman used close to the South Sydney goal line.
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Jaydn Su’A ($10,190)
As his teammates on the South Sydney edges fall around him, Jaydn Su’A is playing in the most consistent footy he ever has. We’re seeing the strong carries and impressive footwork for a man his size. He’s becoming a genuine threat in attack and his responsibilities will only grow with a rookie on the left edge. While he’s only scored 31 points in each of the last two rounds, our predictive model projects Su’A to up his game for 42 points on Saturday night.
DFS Fade: Dunamis Lui ($10,600)
With back-to-back games scoring 50+ points, Dunamis Lui is in hot DFS form. It won’t last forever, though. Our predictive model projects Lui to come back down to earth with a more standard 35 points in this one.
Newcastle Knights v Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs @ McDonald Jones Stadium – 2:00 pm AEST
First Try-Scorers: Kurt Mann – $21, Jake Averillo – $26
With the Bulldogs left edge conceding more tries than any area of any team in the competition coming into Round 11, Kurt Mann ($21 – BetEasy) is an appealing value option. He’s growing in confidence every week. While is ball-running has never been in question, the freedom he’s been given by Adam O’Brien has opened him up further. With Kalyn Ponga floating around the back down the right edge, this Bulldogs defence will have some tough decisions to make on the run.
A roughie playing within an awful defensive group, Jake Averillo ($26 – SportsBet) can motor in attack. If Lachlan Lewis can release his first line break assist of the season and put Averillo into space, he won’t be stopped.
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Bradman Best ($10,110), Josh Jackson ($9,610)
Bradman Best cashed in for 58.3 points last week with our predictive model projecting him to score another 44 on Sunday. With the Knights left side so dangerous and a consistent source of points, Best’s ceiling raises against a poor Bulldogs defence. He deserves serious consideration at $10,110.
Tasked with doing a lot of the defending of the dangerous Newcastle left edge, Josh Jackson is projected to improve on his 39 points from last week with 44 in this one. In a slate stacked with high-scorers at the position, Jackson is a low-cost and fairly low-ownership option.
DFS Fade: Kieran Foran ($11,610)
There is only so much Kieran Foran can do for this Bulldogs side. With a target sure to be on his back and the risk of re-injuring his toe from last week, Foran is a fade option with a projected score of just 37 points.
Gold Coast Titans v Penrith Panthers @ Cbus Super Stadium – 4:05 pm AEST
First Try-Scorers: Brent Naden – $10, Stephen Crichton – $10
Brent Naden ($10 – Neds) moves into the centres this week. While a position that typically scores fewer tries than where he was on the wing in Round 10, his tunnel vision can work in favour here. For better or worse, Naden only has eyes for what is in front of him when he takes possession of the football. If he’s presented with a touch close to the line, it’s unlikely that he lets go of it.
On the other side of the field, Stephen Crichton ($10 – BetEasy) is building a reputation as one of the best try-scorers in the NRL. With Jarome Luai and Viliame Kikau in fine form and Keegan Hipgrave possibly on his side after missing 12 tackles last week, Crichton is hard to pass up in this spot.
Round 11 Preview: Top 10 Missed Tackle Matches Since 2018
Draftstars Suggested Plays: Viliame Kikau ($10,300), Jarome Luai ($10,490)
With the points on offer down the edges against a poor Titans defence, Jarome Luai and Viliame Kikau jump out as a firey DFS combination.
Our predictive model projects Luai to back up his two previous rounds in the 30’s with 41 points on Sunday afternoon. Kikau’s projected score of 46 points might only be the start depending on who the Titans send out to defend him on their right side. At $10,490 and $10,300 respectively, the Panthers pair make for an exciting combination to mould a team around.
DFS Fade: James Tamou ($12,410)
Following some promising DFS form over the last fortnight, James Tamou is getting on the pricey side at $12,410. With a projected score of 44 points, there is better value out there in this one.