1. Many fans are, rightfully, pointing out the huge gulf in class between the top and bottom sides. It’s worth remembering though that just a few years ago both the Eels and Panthers were awful whilst the Dogs and Sea Eagles were flying high. It all works in cycles. The only team immune to the fall are the Storm.
2. With the above said, I have to admit that prior to the Titans/Raiders game I was a little worried this weekend might be a write off. Luckily the Dragons and Knights put on a beauty on Sunday night.
3. The Dogs haven’t scored a single point in three weeks, yet aren’t last. That proves just how atrocious the Sea Eagles are right now. They can’t rely purely on Turbo coming back. Big trouble
4. Staying with the Sea Eagles, the Panthers ran a training drill on Thursday night. They scored three or four tries that an under 8s side would be embarrassed to concede. I hate to sink the boot but Brookvale Oval use to be an absolute nightmare away trip.
5. How good was it to see the Sharks in full flight on Saturday afternoon? Totally bias but Will Kennedy is one of the most enjoyable players in the game when he’s on point. He’s been the Sharks best in three of their four games this season.
6. Speaking of the Sharks, this weekend will show us where they’re truly at. A win over the Roosters sets them up as more than fodder. A big loss suggests yet another 2020 season where they can’t beat the big sides.
7. I don’t love the chances of the Bulldogs breaking their point scoring drought against the Storm. Has a side ever gone four games without a point? Time to check those record books.
8. That Cody Walker suspension was a brain fade of epic proportions. Luckily they have a pretty handy replacement ready to step in to help them against the Broncos. Cannot believe Benji was still available for the Bunnies to snap up late on.
9. The Cowboys’ next fortnight is so important. If they go winless against the Tigers and Bulldogs, I don’t like their chances of avoiding the spoon.
10. Tommy Raudonikis was one of a kind. I was absolutely broken to hear the news yesterday. I have a Jets shirt with the legend printed across it, which I will be wearing all weekend. Thank you Tommy!
Watch ZT’s Dan Nichols preview Round 6 via Rugby League Outlaws
11. The Titans need to win this weekend. They’ve been below par so far this season, although once again their two big name signings have been nine out of 10. Newcastle are wounded and are there for the taking.
12. That Panthers/Raiders game could very well be a preview for a deep finals match-up, perhaps even the decider this year. Very, VERY much looking forward to this potential classic.
13. Injuries look like an unfortunate regular for the 2021 season. Teams are already looking for NRL exemptions and it’s only Round 5. Unheard of.
14. Ryan Papenhuyzen may match his four-try effort from this past weekend against the poor old Doggies. Luckily he won’t destroy me in Supercoach Draft this weekend like he did last week. What a performance.
16. St George-Illawarra have been the surprise packet to date. I fully admit I had them 1-3 to start the season. They could legit be 4-0 with a bit of luck. Anyone willing to write them off for the finals?
17. The Eels aren’t getting the wraps they deserve as an undefeated side despite beating the Storm. A win over the Red V probably won’t change too many opinions but if they beat the Raiders next weekend I expect it to change.
18. The 6:15 game should become the 2pm Sunday game as soon as daylight savings ends. Luckily we only have one more late fixture before the Sunday afternoon footy returns. Call me old but I love the early Sunday game in the sunshine.
19. Anthony Milford is yet to receive a contract offer from the Broncos, and I don’t blame them in the slightest. With the Tigers, Sharks, Cowboys, etc. looking to splash the cash, he has the next ten-or-so rounds to put himself in the shop window. He still has all the talent but I can’t remember the last Milford blockbuster game.
20. Hard to see where an upset comes from this weekend outside of perhaps the Raiders against the Panthers. Again though, this game has a way of making fools of us know-it-all types. Let’s hope there are a few closer games than last week.