NRL 2018 Season Preview & Predictions
by Ken Edwards, 25 February 2018
Examine all NRL odds for the coming season.
The Bankers Bet
At $1.18 to make the finals, there is no more reliable team in Australian sport than the Melbourne Storm. Since 2006, the Storm have finished in the Top 4 in 10 of the last 12 seasons and have played in seven of the last 12 Grand Finals.
The Big Slide Backwards at Brookvale
The Manly Sea Eagles were a big surprise in 2017, finishing sixth with a 14-10 record after being predicted by many to struggle. They overperformed last year, they have an ongoing salary cap, they lack a five-eighth and lack power and experience all over the park. The price of $1.75 for Manly to make the Top 8 is too short. Expect that price to seriously blow out in the first month of the season.
The Big Improvers
There were positive signs in coach Nathan Brown’s 2017 rebuilding process. The club welcomes experienced players in Guerra, Pearce, Lillyman, and Heighington. Fullback Kalyn Ponga is an exciting prospect that the Cowboys couldn’t squeeze under their salary cap. Great Top 8 value at $2.75, or if you’re feeling lucky, $31 to take out the GF.
Scott and Thurston are fit again. Dally M medallist Jason Taumololo is a menacing human wrecking ball. The Cowboys’ ‘culture’ is the envy of every other team in the NRL and they have picked up the buy of the off-season in Jordan Mclean. “Do it for JT” on Grand Final Day at $5.50.