I was a little off with my picks last week, only shooting at 50%. 26/40 this season.
THURSDAY: Broncos V Panthers – Suncorp Stadium – 21.50NZT
MIlford, Niu and Te’o have all been dropped for Brisbane, which is a side searching for rhythm. It doesn’t help that they come up against the only undefeated team in the comp this season through five rounds.
There’s no doubt the Panthers are going to do an absolute number on the Broncos. Brisbane are weak defensively, poor on attack, and lack confidence, polar opposite Penrith.
The divide between great clubs and bad clubs is getting bigger.
Panthers will run riot.
TIP: Panthers 13+
FRIDAY: Knights V Sharks – McDonald Jones Stadium – 20.00NZT
A couple of important inclusions for the Knights will help their chances, but with all that’s happening up top in Cronulla, it’s hard to see what kind of Sharks outfit are going to run out this week as coach John Morris quits.
Newcastle need to find some answers quickly, as they have been poor over the last fornight.
Both of these sides have had their fair share of injury concerns, and the last thing anyone wants to see is more from this game.
I feel like it will be a really close, gutsy game.
TIP: Knights 1-12
Storm V Roosters – AAMI Park – 22.00NZT
It’s a very interesting contest this one. While the Storm would be the first to admit they haven’t been at their best post-Cam Smith, they are still winning the games they should despite not having their best outings.
The Roosters youngster Sam Walker in only his third game of his career will be aware of his opponents and the threats they cause.
Both backlines are star-studded with some brilliant finishers.
The Storm edge the Roosters in the forwards, just, and I think their bench will have a major impact.
TIP: Storm 1-12
SATURDAY: Sea Eagles V Titans – Glen Willow Oval, Mudgee, 17.00NZT
The Sea Eagles breath a sigh of relief with a win last week, and have Tom Trbojevic back for the first time in season.
That will be a confidence boost for Manly.
The Titans named the same 17 that dismantled the Knights last week, as Fifita was a man amongst boys.
It’s hard to just shut him down, because he’s a unit, but also they have a good forward pack where others can stand up and deliver.
Manly will have a plan to try keep the ball away from him by keeping it themselves.
Gold Coast will do enough to win this, they are looking very confident.
TIP: Titans 13+
Rabbitohs V Tigers – Stadium Australia – 19.30NZT
Cody Walker back from suspension, and the Tigers are back from being booed off the field at Leichhardt last week.
They owe it to their fans are an abysmal display, but it doesn’t get any easier against Souths who are red hot.
The way the Rabbitohs play is champaigne rugby league. A fast, mobile side that can seemingly score at will.
The Tigers have been weak through the middle, and that’s where the Rabbitohs are very strong.
TIP: Rabbitohs 13+
Raiders V Eels – GIO Stadium – 21.30NZT
This game could be the game of the round. Both strong teams backing up after bad losses, there is a definite point to prove.
Caleb Aekins makes his club debut for the Green Machine at fullback, and Dylan Brown is suspended for Parra.
Both sides are vying for the ‘bully’ title in the forward pack. There are plenty of players in both these sides that are real monsters on defence, but it’s what they also bring in attack that can be just as dangerous.
Canberra is always a tough place to win at, so the Eels will really have to dig deep to get a result here.
TIP: Raiders 1-12
SUNDAY: Dragons V Warriors – Netstrata Jubilee Oval – 16.00NZT
The Dragons are improving every week, and the Warriors seem to be getting worse.
While the Red V have had a simpler draw, they are winning these games and are proving they won’t be the easy beats.
The Warriors momentum went out the door last week, but with some key forwards returning this week, it will help their underwhelming go-forward.
St George Illawarra have a good record over the Warriors too, but that’s not to say the Warriors won’t produce one of “those” performances and upstage their rivals.
TIP: Dragons 1-12
Cowboys V Bulldogs – Queensland Country Bank Stadium – 18.05NZT
While this game ends round six in an uninspiring way, it still has to be played out.
I guess there’s more pressure on the Bulldogs to win this, as the only winless side in the NRL this year.
The Cowboys looked a lot better last week, but have some injuries that won’t do them any favours this week.
For Canterbury Bankstown to get a win, they really need to start better. Something they haven’t looked like doing at all in 2021.
This game is a bit of a coin toss for me, but the Cowboys should be good enough across the park to win.
TIP: Cowboys 1-12
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