With round one done and dusted, fantasy coaches are now in the midst of assessing many members of their 21 man squad.
As we weigh up whether to burn early trades or sit tight for another week, we see if players who were a little underwhelming in round one can bounce back with a decent round two score.
One thing to consider with trades in mind is what effect COVID-19 could have on the fantasy season.
As it stands right now, the footy will go on, but that could change at any second.
When considering trades, be sure to have the casualty ward handy, particularly if you’re looking at a player whose covering for another injured player.
If the competition was suspended for any amount of time, it could effectively change the round that player is due back in. Eg:
Hypothetically, if the comp was to go on hold for two months and a player was listed to return in round 9, by the time the comp re-started that player would be ready to go again and you may well have burned a trade.
Anyway, enough about the crazy world we’re currently living in.
Let’s have a look at who’s in the firing line, ones to whack on your watch list and my base stats buys of the week.
IN THE FIRING LINE
Zane Musgrove – With just 26 minutes of game time and a score of 13, Musgrove who is owned by 17.3% of coaches could be one to consider giving the hook.
He still has a break even of 20 so still is every chance of making some money but there’s certainly a few other cheap options that look more likely to gain you some early increases based on the evidence of round one.
Warriors forwards Eliesa Katoa and Jamayne Taunoa-Brown and Shark Toby Rudolf could be ones to have a look at as alternatives.
Brayden Wiliame – With many of his 26.6% of owners starting him in the tricky centre position, Wiliame’s lowly 16 points counted to their overall score.
He still carries the same break even of 17 and is only a try or 2 away from gaining some price rises so is probably a hold for now – at least until a better option comes along.
Warriors winger Adam Pompey is perhaps the only other option in the same price bracket but he only averaged 17 fantasy points in his five games last year.
Joe Stimson – With a score of 24 in 69 minutes of game time, Stimson is one to consider parting ways with early on, especially if he’s used in your starting 17.
He’s been named to start again this week so is still a chance of notching you a solid score and making some cash with his break even still at 29.
Has showed fantasy promise in the past but it’s probably worth considering he was getting amongst the tries at times playing at the Storm.
THE KING’S CULL
Latrell Mitchell – The one player I’d be absolutely looking to offload if he was in my squad this week is Mitchell.
The 16.3% of coaches who took the punt on him hitting the ground running this season were left sadly disappointed as he scored just 14 and was taken off after just 55 minutes by Coach Wayne Bennett.
There’s obviously a plan to ease him into the custodian role and it’s unclear at this stage how long it will be before he’s playing out the 80 again.
Sitting on a price tag of 624k and a break even of 66, I’d be getting him out now to free up space in your cap.
Named to start in the second-row this week, both Jamil Hopoate 231k and Tyrell Fuimaono 252k would have raised a few eyebrows when coaches were reading the team sheets this week.
Hopoate gets his chance for the suspended Tevita Pangai Jr but be prepared for Broncos skipper Alex Glenn to come into his position next week.
Similar story at the Dragons with Fuimaono filling in for Tariq Sims who will serve a one game suspension.
Both are capable of making more money off the bench particularly if they post a big score this week.
Just don’t buy them anticipating they’ll be part of your scoring 17 beyond this round.
THE REVERSE TRAP
After a solid score of 43 at fullback, Zac Lomax has unfortunately been named on the wing to cover for the injured Mikaele Ravalawa with Matt Dufty getting another chance at the back.
The ultimate scenario here is Lomax moving back to fullback next week when Ravalawa returns.
There’s always the chance of course Dufty has a cracking game and retains his place but even so, with a break even of 17 Lomax is a hold for this week.
One of the golden rules in fantasy is to never get excited by one good week, but there’s certainly a few worth keeping your eye on this week.
Isaah Yeo 2RF
Base stats 74
Played through the middle in an 80 minute performance last week where he made 33 tackles, ran for 170 metres and busted 7 tackles.
Yeo is well priced at 595k and has a break even of 11 which almost make him a buy right now.
The only thing holding me back at this stage is the fact he’s been named to shift back onto an edge this week.
Last week, James Fisher-Harris started on an edge and has been named at lock this week.
It’s hard to see why Ivan Cleary would tinker with a winning formula that saw his team down the defending premiers so it will be interesting to see where they play once the game kicks off.
Jesse Bromwich FRF
Base stats 50
A former fantasy gun who has been disappointing in the last few seasons for fantasy scores but could he be ready to recapture his best?
Scored 50 in round one all in base stats and with a price of 554K and a break even of 28, he could turn into a solid mid-range option if he can continue to produce the numbers he did last week.
George Williams HLF
Base stats 56
This English half’s style of game always looked suited to fantasy but his awkward price and the unknown of how he’d adapt to the NRL held most coaches back heading into round one, but after a very impressive 64 he’s certainly one to consider.
Busted five tackles on the weekend showcasing his willingness to run the footy, with his 29 tackles and 206 kick metres providing valuable points to his total.
BASE STATS BUYS OF THE WEEK
David Fifita 2RF
Base stats 64
If you weren’t one of the 42% who started with this devastating back-rower in round one, you’ll want to get on now before his price tag skyrockets.
With 150 metres and 8 tackle busts, the all action running forward is sure to post plenty of big numbers this season, even when he’s not scoring 70 metre solo tries!
His price of 717K is still unders but a break even of 28 means his price will continue to soar in the coming weeks.
Corey Horsburgh FRF/2RF
Base stats 59
After being named to start on an edge last week, Horsburgh ended up playing through the middle third.
Joseph Tapine instead played the edge role and they have been named to start that way again this week.
A solid work ethic in tackles and run metres means he has a strong base.
He also has the ability to post consistent offloads and tackle busts which are keys to the best fantasy forwards posting strong scores.
Priced at 499K with a break even of 15, he looks set to make some nice coin in the coming weeks.
The only possible negative is the return of John Bateman to the Raiders pack in a month or so.
I’m willing to take the punt he holds the 13 jersey with Tapine the man to make way when the Englishman returns.