The top of the NRL ladder paints a compelling picture as the Roosters, Panthers, Raiders, Knights and Eels all remain unbeaten to start the season.
After Parramatta’s upset over Melbourne on Thursday night, Round 2 was largely another difficult one for punters to navigate with plenty of multis winding up in the bin nice and early.
The confusion didn’t stop there though as the Knights and Dragons all came through as the underdog, which in turn has seen our NRL Futures market receive a bit of a shake-up.
If you’re a numbers nerd craving your fix, we’ve got you sorted with all the firmers, drifters, best bets and bad beats in our Round 2 edition of The Offload.
Performance of the Week
Pretty hard to ignore what the Eels accomplished on Thursday night.
After dominating the Rabbitohs in Round 1, just about everyone fancied the Storm to improve to 2-0 at Bankwest as the short-priced favourites.
Brad Arthur and his men had other ideas though as the Eels put aside another forgetful first-half performance to score two tries in the final 20 minutes on their way to a 16-12 win.
Maika Sivo was the star of the show crossing the line twice, but really, it was a total team performance from Parramatta.
The Eels completed 88% of their sets and landed some big tackles, particularly when the game was on the line to improve to 2-0.
Just like last year the Eels have started fast, and as a result have improved from $13.00 into $11.00 to win the Premiership. With a couple of very winnable games coming up against the Tigers and Sharks, that quote might be into single digits before we know it.
While it pained us to see the Tigers go down again, the 34-year-old Brett Morris was extraordinary during the Roosters’ 40-6 win in Campbelltown.
The 15-year veteran reeled in all three Dally M votes with an equal number of tries on Sunday, a winning result for those that backed Morris to Score a Hat-Trick as the $11.00 favourite.
Morris is the only player to claim all three votes in the opening two rounds of play – a deserving result as the Roosters continue to remind everyone that they belong in the premiership conversation.
With a big game ahead on Friday against the Rabbitohs, the tri-colours will look to flex their muscle again with Morris and James Tedesco both looking unstoppable.
- Ken Maumalo Anytime @ $2.25: the Auckland native has quickly turned into one of the most consistent customers in the league of late. After crossing the stripe on Friday in the Warriors’ loss to the Knights.
- The Over on Knights Games: the Warriors and Newcastle combined for 36 points on Friday, a nervous watch for anyone that took Over 35.5 Total Points. If you’ve been keeping count, you’ll know the total has now gone Over in each of the Knights’ last seven games.
- The Broncos as the Underdog: safe to say this one might intact for a while. The Broncos have now lost each of their last 17 games as the dog following Friday’s defeat to the Titans.
- Alex Johnston Anytime @ $1.90: it was a long wait, but Johno has now scored a try in six of his last seven games after crossing the line in the 74th minute against Manly.
- The Over on Dragons Games: go ahead and back the Over on the Saints this week. Each of St George’s las six games have gone Over the total.
- Roosters -9.5 @ $2.00: looking back, this line was always way too short. The Chooks have now covered in 19 of their last 21 games against Wests following their 34-point win.
- Mikaele Ravalawa Anytime @ $2.25: be sure to make Ravalawa next time the Dragons hit the road. The big Fijian has now scored in each of his last five away appearances for the Red V.
- Playing Against the Bulldogs at Home: after failing to score a single point against Penrith on Saturday, the Dogs have now failed to cover the line in eight of their last nine home games.
Don’t Forget About…
The former Bronco turned Titan made his old teammates pay not once, but twice during Friday’s 28-16 win on the Gold Coast with a pair of tries paying a handy $11.00.
Speaking of doubles, what about Viliame Kikau?
Penrith’s star second-rower opened the scoring against the Dogs with a try in the fourth minute paying $13.00, followed by another midway through the second half to salute @ $10.00 in our 2 Or More Tries market.
Not to be outdone, Paul Momirovski added a pair of his own for good measure inside the final 10 minutes – another huge collect for those that took the $8.50 on offer.
It’s Getting Hot in Here
For a couple of Queensland clubs.
While Brisbane showed some signs of life once again in the first half, their 0-2 start to the season has seemed them firm into outright favourites to secure back-to-back wooden spoons.
The Broncs were the joint $3.50 favourites in our Most Losses market heading into Round 2, but they now find themselves as the sole $3.25 favourites ahead of the Bulldogs ($4.50) and Dragons ($5.00).
Also receiving a trim were the Cowboys.
Still winless under new coach Todd Payten, North Queensland has firmed from $10.00 into $7.50 after receiving a touch-up at the hands of the Red V on Saturday night in Townsville.
If You’re Not First, You’re Last
The book made a minor profit on Thursday night when Maika Sivo scored first against the Storm and things only got better from there.
Jarrod Wallace, at a very cool $41 quote might I add, saw the book up in a big way heading into the weekend slate, but the tide did swing back in favour of the punters early on Saturday.
Cody Walker scoring seven minutes in to Sea Eagles-Rabbitohs was the largest First Try Scorer loss of the weekend, but the book still managed to come out on top thanks to Sebastian Kris opening the scoring at 14-1 in Sharks-Raiders.
It’s only early days, but this week’s award goes to Sione Katoa for another scoreless performance in Sunday’s wet and windy loss to the Raiders.
To be fair, Cronulla’s star winger had a chance in the late stages, only to be dragged out of bounds by three Canberra defenders.
The 26-year-old was as short as $2.40 Anytime against the Green Machine though – a reasonable price for a guy that finished sixth on the Top Try Scorers list last year.
Speaking of Top Try Scorers, Kyle Feldt, where you at?
The North Queensland captain was just nudged out for first place on that same list last year but has so far been a complete no-show.
Like Katoa, the Cowboys winger was a major disappointment for punters that took the $2.15 about him Anytime against the Dragons.
- Warriors/Knights Over 38.5: who would have thought talent rich side like the Warriors would be held to just 16 points? The Kiwis and Knights combined for only 36 points on Friday, falling just 2.5 shy of the total points line. With Kodi Nikorima missing a crucial conversion in the 68th minute and the Warriors committing some costly errors not long after, this was a sick watch.
- Raiders -5.5: there wasn’t much to like about the Raiders in the second half on Sunday. The Green Machine did just enough to withstand a late Cronulla onslaught, but they still allowed a controversial try to Josh Dugan in the final minutes to see their 12-6 advantage turn into a narrow two-point lead. All in all, disgusting stuff if you took the Raiders at the line.
The Eels have been the biggest movers this week following their remarkable win over the Storm last Thursday.
Parramatta has firmed from $15 into $11 in our Premiership market, while the Roosters and Rabbits remain steady $6.00 second elects to the Panthers.
On the other end, the Broncos, Cowboys and Dogs have all drifted from double digits out to triple figures at 0-2 to start the season.
As far as the eight is concerned, now might be the time to jump on teams like the Warriors, Knights, and Titans.
To Make the Top 8
- Titans: $2.00 into $1.90
- Warriors: $2.20 out to $2.50
- Knights: $1.80 into $1.65
Bloody Good Bets
We saw some outstanding (and very ballsy) head-to-head bets from a few high rollers over the weekend.
- $15k @ $2.80: Parramatta Eels to Win
- $50k @ $1.45: Gold Coast Titans to Win
- $40k and $30k @ $2.00: Sydney Roosters to Cover the Line (-11.5)
Don’t Tell The Misso
And of course, some absolute blunders that may take some serious explaining to the better half.
- $40k @ $1.53: Melbourne Storm to Win
- $45k @ $1.70: North Queensland Cowboys to Win
- $25k @ $2.00: North Queensland Cowboys to Cover the Line (-2)
It was a pretty rough weekend for most NRL bettors following Parra’s shock result, but one savvy Neds nuffie did manage to snag this winner.
- $10 into $5,635.60: Cody Walker Anytime, David Fifita Anytime, Sydney Roosters 13+, Sydney Roosters to Win, Half-Time/Full-Time: Roosters/Roosters, South Sydney Rabbitohs to Win, Manly/Souths Over 40.5 Total Points, James Tedesco Anytime Try Scorer, Brett Morris Anytime Try Scorer, Xavier Coates Anytime Try Scorer, Latrell Mitchell Anytime Try Scorer