Round 16 very much followed the lead of Round 13 in that, despite being heavily Origin effected, it produced a weekend of brilliant action.

We had a Golden Point thriller, a Saturday afternoon slugfest, a return to form from a humbled pre-season heavyweight, and the try of all tries.

Round 16 will be remembered for many things but it's tough to go past the first try of cult hero Alex Twal.

Below are 20 thoughts from a historic Round 16 of NRL action:

1. We couldn't start anywhere else other than Campbelltown Sports Stadium. Alex Twal's first NRL career try showed everything that is great about our game. What a celebration for a super popular player. The crowd, social media ... even the referee couldn't help but smile. What a moment!

2. We now have the official announcement of rugby league's worst kept secret - Shane Flanagan's return to coaching at the Dragons. I maintain that the Dragons have made the correct choice, dare I say only choice? The Red V need a total cleanout and need an experienced coach with runs on the board to oversee it.

3. Speaking on which, the Dragons should absolutely let Ben Hunt walk at the end of 2023. They gain nothing from releasing him early but they have to move on at season's end. They need to re-invest that million dollars-plus a season in younger players with a look toward 2024/25 and beyond.

4. If I'm the Dragons I'm also tapping Zac Lomax on the shoulder. There is still a magnificent footballer in the 23 year-old but the Dragons need value for every big money contract. Right now Lomax is just not producing that. Cut ties. Again, this needs to be a total rebuild.

5. The Bulldogs have sensationally been linked two two big name signings for 2024 in Matt Lodge and Tyrone May. I can't, for the life of me, believe the Dogs would go down this path. The Dogs are sending out major "sign anyone with a name" vibes and it's not good. How does a fringe first grade utility and a below par middle forward improve their squad?

The league community has seemingly moved on from Matt Lodge's drunken New York rampage. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

6. Speaking of the Dogs, they were obliterated on Sunday afternoon. The feeling at the game, as a Sharks fan, was that it was a training run. I can tell you now, Sharks fans were annoyed the magical half century was not achieved. Yes, it was a brilliant performance but absolutely a false dawn after last week's humbling in Melbourne.

7. I was a little worried heading into this weekend that we would cop a typical Origin shortened weekend. I need not have worried. We've now gone two brilliant weekends from two. Looking at Round 19, I'm shifting the fears to that weekend. Could be a rough one.

8. How good was enjoying two NSW Cup games on Saturday afternoon? The Roosters and the Knights scored a mountain of points in the early game while the Jets beat the Warriors in a monster clash at Henson Park. I cannot stress enough how much fans need to be watching these games. So much fun!

9. Genuine question: Should the Roosters be looking at Joseph Manu as their long-term option in the number one jersey? He's been awful in the six but returned to form in a big way in a pure running role. Worth pondering.

10. Also at the Roosters, I can't believe we're in Round 16 and talking about a monster clear out of players. This roster was arguably the second best in the competition in Round 1. Fast forward and we're talking about every spine position as well as possibly moving Joseph Sua'ali'i on early. Anybody see that coming?

NRL Rd 2 - Roosters v Warriors
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 11: Joseph-Aukuso Suaalii of the Roosters watches on during the warm-up before the round two NRL match between the Sydney Roosters and the New Zealand Warriors at Allianz Stadium on March 11, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

11. As an unashamed Scott Drinkwater fan, Friday night was a very enjoyable game to watch. With the greatest of respects to the Cowboys halves pairing, Drinkwater is there go to creative player. That match-winning try was the highlight of the round for me.

12. Speaking of highlights, is there anything better in our game than a prop forward crossing for a try? We saw the reaction to the aforementioned Alex Twal try but we also saw Thomas Hazelton cross for a four-pointer, also his first. All eyes on Pat Carrigan now to end cross for his first at NRL level.

13. Kyle Flanagan, at 18-4 down, got up and screamed at fans in proclaiming something along the lines of "this is my house". I dare say he's looking back at that this afternoon with a cringe expression. I love the enthusiasm but it felt like giving a send off to a batsman who had just clapped 140+ runs.

14. I have to admit, the Challenge Cup in England (think FA Cup knock-out style tournament for rugby league) is something I'm very jealous of. We don't have a second tier per say so it probably couldn't happen here but quarter final weekend felt so special.

15. How awkward must Brad Arthur's pre-game speech been on Saturday evening? He would have had to have directed his players to run at the Manly halfback, his son. They did and it worked wonders. Tough for both Arthur's you'd imagine.

TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 18: Eels coach Brad Arthur speaks at the post match media conference at the end of the round 10 NRL match between the North Queensland Cowboys and the Parramatta Eels at 1300SMILES Stadium on May 18, 2019 in Townsville, Australia. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

16. Back to the Dragons quickly; does anything think the club held onto Anthony Griffin for so long as they knew Hunt would request a release if he left?

17. How's Channel 9 promoting the upcoming Origin game as "the greatest game two in history"? Ummm, what!? If they'd gone with most anticipated, well still no, but greatest game two? Hasn't even happened yet. I don't know why but that bothered me.

18. I did not have Ryan Matterson and Daejam Asi as a halves pairing on my 2023 bingo card. I love rugby league!

19. As a Sharks fan I would hate to see Paul Gallen in Dragons colours. That said, if Shane Flanagan wants to go back to what worked for him in the past, we may see the Sharks legend make that short trip to Kogarah.

20. Can we please outline what exactly "in the act of scoring" means. On Saturday we saw two players stripped off the ball whilst held by numerous players, standing in the in goal. One was called a penalty as the player wasn't technically scoring. The other was ruled play on as he was in the in goal. Exact same situation, two different decisions. Which is it?