Round 7 of the NRL gets underway on Thursday night and we’ll be treated to another eight games, with plenty of opportunities to back a winner!
The undefeated Panthers put their record on the line against the Knights first-up this week and understandably, they are clear favourites to win again.
I’ve run the rule over every player, every side and every game, and you can find my complete NRL Round 7 Tips below.
The Panthers look well placed to extend their unbeaten start to the season past the Knights in Round 7’s opener on Thursday night.
Penrith’s start to the season has been close to faultless; it has been from a winning perspective, but digging deeper into their form, and they’ve systematically dismantled almost every other side that they have drawn to play.
The Knights have been almost impossible to trust from a betting perspective, but what’s new?
They do enter this match off the back of a tough win over the Sharks, but they’d need to go to another level to become the first team to beat the Panthers this year.
Our Titans enter Round 7 with their tail between their legs and will need to improve drastically to defeat an impressive South Sydney outfit on Friday.
It was an all-round disappointing performance against the Sea Eagles. Granted, that side is a completely different prospect with Tommy Turbo on the paddock, but it’s hard to make excuses for a 36-0 score line at any rate.
The Bunnies meanwhile carried on with something of a lacklustre performance (for their lofty standards) against Wests, but it was ultimately still enough to get the chocolates.
I’m confident that plenty of points will be scored, so I’m going to take the over.
The biggest mismatch of the round looks like materialising in Friday night’s primetime slot.
The Broncos have been bad for a while now, and compounding that truth in Round 7 is the fact that through everything, Parramatta has clearly been their bogey side.
To the Broncos’ credit, their performance against the Panthers last week was the best they’ve produced this year by a country mile, but I’d need to see them do it again before I consider trusting them.
I can’t find any reason at all why this might be a close contest.
The Bulldogs will chase their first win of the season away to the Sharks on Saturday afternoon.
Granted, the Bulldogs are largely young and inexperienced, but they are also yet to show any real direction and winning intent under Trent Barrett, and clearly every match this season is going to be a major test.
The Sharks were unlucky not to get there against the Knights last week, and their form prior to that was good.
This is another mismatch with seemingly, another pretty clear result.
The Cowboys are seeking a hat-trick of wins in Round 7, but they’d surely need to go to another level to beat the Raiders on Saturday night.
Round 5’s tough performance and win over Wests was franked when they weathered a competitive first half against the Dogs last week, and ultimately iced the result.
I expected them to have one win by this point of the season, so they’ve slightly overachieved, and you can’t knock Todd Payton so much – he is at least trying things.
The Raiders weren’t able to take advantage of their frosty home conditions in Round 6 and lost to the Eels, but this is a decent drop in class for them. They can cover 11.5 points as favourites.
Wests Tigers (proudly sponsored by Neds) face another tough task in the resurgent Sea Eagles on Sunday afternoon.
They continue to return tough efforts and keep themselves in the contest for the full eighty week in, week out, but unfortunately for the Tigers, they don’t get the result more often than not.
That has resulted in just one win this season, and they are now perched just one position above the winless Bulldogs.
The Sea Eagles’ slow start to the season now looks to be in the history books, and they are seeking a hat-trick of wins in Round 7.
Last week’s demolition job of the Titans really was something to behold, and it underlined the importance of Tom Trbojevic to their set-up.
With Turbo still fit, they can win again.
One of the better matches of the round will see the fifth-placed Roosters take on the sixth-placed Dragons, with both teams eager to avenge Round 6 losses.
Things looked dire for the Roosters when Luke Keary was ruled out for the season, but Sam Walker has ably stepped into the role, and with the exception of last week’s loss to the Storm, they’ve been impressive.
The Dragons have continued to overachieve, but were halted by the hot and cold Warriors in Round 6.
They’ll be quietly confident in their chances of recording the upset, and I think they are up to it.
Mismatches seemingly bookend Round of the NRL Premiership season, with the Storm heavy favourites to defeat the Warriors in Melbourne on Sunday night.
The Storm have returned to competition in typically slick form this season, dropping a couple of games, but winning convincingly more often than not.
They face arguably the league’s most inconsistent side, the Warriors, who seem to lose to bad sides and beat good ones.
They have typically played well in Melbourne recently, and with that in mind, I’m staying out of match betting this week.