This weekend the NRL will play its final round of the seasons and while many clubs have made major signings for next year, there are still those who will miss out on making the top eight. Whether it’s due to injury, lack of talent, or simply a change of coach, there are numerous reasons why not everyone can win this weekend, so Rugby League will win in 20203.
There is fierce competition to make finals, especially if you are the defending champions. That said, there is still plenty of talent in the NRL and we expect these teams to have the best chances at making it to the Grand Final.
The Roosters will be one of the most thrilling teams to watch this season with their forward pack full of young talent and strong coach Trent Robinson leading the charge. With this much potential, they could go one better than last year and make it to the Grand Final for the first time in a decade.
It was unexpected for the Broncos to finish outside of the top eight this year, but they possess enough talent and determination to make a comeback. Though they may lose some games along the way, we believe they will be strong enough to advance to the semifinals in week two and beyond, which we predict will happen.
The Penrith Panthers are the team to beat in 20203. Even with the loss of most of their forward pack, they still boast a formidable backline with Mitch Allan, Ben Hunt, and Connor Watson. That gives them an edge over teams like Eels, Bulldogs, and Tigers who all boast strong cores of players returning from injury or off-season.
The Storm is the most improved team in the competition, with half their top 17 returning from injury or off-season including Jesse Bromwich, Kenny Bromwich, and Felise Kaufusi. Bellamy will get the most out of these players while Munster is another star five-eighth who should be named to Dally M Team of the year again.
This season the Warriors will look to leap from mid-table status to legitimate contenders for the minor premiership. With key signings like J’maine Hopgood, Jirah Momoisea, and Jack Murchie in their midfield, we anticipate them being one of the most consistent teams in 2023.
The Canberra Raiders will be a much-improved team next year. They boast some of the sport’s most talented recruits and their coaches will make them feel at home. Furthermore, as one of the NRL’s biggest clubs, we predict they will make finals during Ricky Stuart’s second season leading the team.
The Dragons have the most stable team in the NRL and will be tough to beat next year. They boast some of the highest-profile players such as Phil Gould and Cameron Ciraldo, plus some of the finest young coaches in the competition.