Ben Barba could make an NRL comeback as early as this month after being cut by French rugby side Toulon.

The French giants have told Barba he is not part of the club's plans once their season ends in a matter of weeks.

If Barba wants to return to the NRL he still needs to serve a 12-match suspension for a second strike under the NRL's illicit drug policy. That means that if Barba was signed by a club before Round 12, he would not be eligible to play until the final round of competition.

Barba will also need to front the NRL integrity unit and set a clear path for his rehabilitation before a contract with an NRL club is approved.

With all that in mind, it's more than likely that any club signing Barba would be considering him for the 2018 season. So which clubs are likely to consider signing the former Dally M player of the year?

Brisbane Broncos

This seems like an easy club to tick off the list of potential suitors. With Darius Boyd currently holding down the fullback position and Jack Bird joining the club in 2018, it seems very unlikely that the Broncos would be interested in signing another one.

This, of course, is before we even consider that Barba was let go by the Broncos coach Wayne Bennett upon his arrival in 2014.

Canberra Raiders

Jack Wighton is under contract with the Raiders for 2018 and it seems very unlikely the signing of Barba would unseat him from that position. The Raiders could use some depth at the position though with backup fullback Zac Santo currently off contract at the end of the season.

Historically the Raiders have found it hard to secure talent to Canberra but in recent years this seems to have changed with Ricky Stuart building a solid team with a great culture. Would Barba consider following in Dave Taylor's footsteps and choosing the Raiders to rebuild his NRL career?

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs

It's a possibility. Barba has played under Bulldogs coach Des Hasler and in 2012, led the league in tries scored. A return to the Bulldogs for Barba could be a sensational NRL "redemption" story along the lines of Sonny Bill Williams returning to the NRL.

With the signing of Kieran Foran and Aaron Woods, the Bulldogs are reshaping their squad for 2018 and they are still missing a few puzzle pieces. Fullback is one of them and Barba could slot straight into the role.

Could Foran help Barba back into the NRL fold or is it a recipe for disaster?

Cronulla Sharks

This could be one of the more likely destinations if Barba does make an NRL return. The Sharks actually re-signed Barba back in January before he then decided to make the move to French rugby.

But with reports of a big offer to Dragons fullback Josh Dugan and the emergence of Valentine Holmes, do they have a position for him?

Gold Coast Titans

The fullback position at the Titans in 2018 is very unclear. Superstar Jarryd Hayne has an option to stay with the club next season on a big money deal but has yet to accept. In recent weeks since his return, he's also been bumped from his preferred position by utility Tyrone Roberts. Roberts is also off contract at the end of the season though.

If Hayne decides to move on from the Gold Coast, Barba could be a legit option for the club.

Manly Sea Eagles

Can't see Manly having any interest in Barba at all with young gun Tom Trbojevic holding down the fullback position. That said, with the loss of Brett Stewart and Steve Matai this season, the club is quite short on outside backs and will be flush with cash in 2018.

Melbourne Storm

What could Craig Bellamy do with Ben Barba? He's taken average players and made them stars. He's had great players and helped mould them into future Immortals. Could he take a broken Barba and rebuild him back to his former glory?

With Cooper Cronk leaving at the end of the season and Billy Slater, as yet, undecided on his future after this season, signing Barba could be a master stroke by the veteran coach.

Newcastle Knights

The Knights are desperately trying to sign talent to fast track the rebuilding process and 2018 looks bright for them with the addition of star in the making Kalyn Ponga. Ponga is pencilled in as the club's fullback in 2018 and we doubt that will change.

Coach Nathan Brown has also been keen to sign the "right type" of player for the club going forward and it seems that Barba would be at odds with that mantra.

New Zealand Warriors

Could Ben Barba escape the media and the temptations of Sydney and set up his career again with a stint across the ditch? It worked for Kieran Foran.

The difference being that the Warriors had a position for Foran to play and Foran himself has ties to New Zealand. The same can't be said for Barba and with Kiwi international and club captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck holding down the fullback position, it seems unlikely the Warriors will be Barba's path back to the NRL.

North Queensland Cowboys

The Cowboys are losing youngster Kalyn Ponga at the end of the year and Lachlan Coote has been struggling with injuries. Some cover at the fullback position is needed going forward.

The club had recently been linked with trying to sign Warriors utility Tui Lolohea who can provide cover across the whole backline, including the halves. Could Barba be a similar option if they miss out on Lolohea?

Parramatta Eels

Brad Arthur is a no nonsense coach and the Eels have had plenty of "redemption" stories amongst their players. Guys like Manu Ma'u and Suaia Matagi have both spent time in jail and managed to turn their lives around. But the club has also had plenty of scandals as well and we doubt Arthur would want to rock the boat (or form) of Corey Norman by bringing in any distractions.

Added to that, Eels fans see Bevan French as the future of the club at fullback. Even with French injured the last few weeks, the club has hardly missed a beat with Clinton Gutherson stepping into the role seamlessly.

Penrith Panthers

Penrith has taken a number of players cast adrift by other clubs for various disciplinary reasons and attempted to rehabilitate them, could the Panthers try to do the same with Barba?

Yet again though, Barba's preferred position of fullback is blocked at the Panthers by club captain Matt Moylan. Could signing Barba allow Moylan to follow his destiny as the next Darren Lockyer and move to five-eighth?

South Sydney Rabbitohs

The Rabbitohs have plenty of options in the fullback position with Greg Inglis leading. Currently sidelined for the season with injury, the Rabbitohs have turned to Alex Johnston to fill the sizeable hole left by Inglis but could also just as easily let Cody Walker play at the back if needed.

Johnston is currently off contract but with Inglis and Walker on the books for a number of years, the Rabbitohs don't have a need to sign Barba.

St George Illawarra Dragons

The Dragons have spent big in 2018, signing Broncos halfback Ben Hunt and also re-signing one of the form players so far this season in Gareth Widdop. Along with Cameron McInnes, the Dragons spine is looking very solid in 2018.

They have real question marks around their fullback position going forward with Josh Dugan currently off contract. It seems unlikely the Dragons would look to Barba though even if they do lose Dugan to a rival club, with youngsters Jai Field and Matt Dufty waiting in the wings

Sydney Roosters

With the signing of James Tedesco, the Roosters would seem to be out of any race to sign Ben Barba. Tedesco is one of the best fullbacks in the game and with the rest of the spine containing Luke Keary, Mitchell Pearce and Jake Friend, the Roosters will be one of the favourites for 2018.

Wests Tigers

Last but certainly not least is the Wests Tigers. Since sacking Jason Taylor and signing new head coach Ivan Cleary, the Wests Tigers have been working hard to rebuild the club. They will lose star trio Mitchell Moses, Aaron Woods and James Tedesco but in doing so, they now also have a lot of money to spend.

Already they have signed Bulldogs five-eighth Josh Reynolds to replace Moses and Ben Matulino to replace Woods. Could Barba be signed to replace Tedesco?

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