With the Origin squads being released, and the discussion to follow, Round 12s round of NRL action has largely been forgotten.

As a Sharks fan, good. As a rugby league fan, good!

I'm usually here hyping up the week that was but outside of the three close games, it was a pretty uninspiring round of football.

That said, it was one that certainly presented plenty of talking points.

Below are 20 thoughts from Round 12, and of course Origin selection.

1. NRL fans, as per annual tradition, are being asked to accept a below par competition for 80 per cent of the next two months. Star players will be unavailable or backing up from Origin football, not to mention the plethora of byes and short rounds. Ours is the only elite competition in the world that lets its product suffer for a third of the season.

2. With the above said, all eyes are now on the interstate series. Before we break down the squads, I have to say that this weekend of football is the most uninspiring I can remember seeing. A Kayo Stadium matchup between the Dolphins and Raiders looks the only highlight.

 2024-06-01T09:35:00Z 
 
 
Kayo Stadium
DOL   
25
FT
26
   CBR
   Crowd: 10,024

3. Both sides produced Origin shocks overnight. The Blues omitted both James Tedesco and Apisai Koroisau while the Maroons overlooked the form back-rower of the competition in David Fifita. Yikes!

» NSW Game 1 squad
» QLD Game 1 squad

4. I do have to praise Michael Maguire for taking a punt. He's moved on from one of the superstars of the modern era, in Tedesco, while he's handpicked his own captain in Jake Trbojevic. He's picked his side, and will live or die by it. I respect that.

» Blues squad reaction
» Maroons squad reaction

5. The main shock, for mine, was overlooking three time Premiership captain Isaah Yeo for both a starting spot and the captaincy. I dare say we may see a late change on the night but Yeo seemed the obvious choice for the armband.

Panther captain Isaah Yeo receiving a pass at NSW Blues training. (Photo by Joshua Davis)

6. Moving on from Origin, the Sharks were dealt a harsh reality check on Saturday night. As a fan I'm hoping it was just "one of those nights" but Penrith's recent record over the Sharks is flawless. If a team hopes to do anything come finals time, they're going to have to learn to beat Penrith. Sitting top of the table and winning two from three top class games helps soften the blow but in no way is there anything positive to be taken out of that contest.

 2024-05-25T07:30:00Z 
 
 
PointsBet Stadium
CRO   
0
FT
42
   PEN
   Crowd: 13,500

7. Unfortunately we witnessed a round that saw five blowouts. Five games saw a team run up 40 + points. Truthfully, Sunday saved the round by producing the two best games of the weekend.

8. I wish Thursday night's game had been held at Belmore rather than Accor. The atmosphere remind me of the Covid years. No hate on the fans. A random Thursday night game with two below par teams was never going to attract 35,000. Imagine that 15,442 crowd at Belmore though. It would have been heaving!

9. I never thought I'd miss the Friday 6pm game but looking at this week's fixture, I cried a single tear. The NSW Cup will have to see us through this difficult weekend.

10. Outside of Penrith, this competition is so wide open. The Broncos lost another game they'd have expected to win, the Roosters rebounded from last week, while the Sharks were blown off the park. The Dolphins lost to a depleted Warriors outfit. Melbourne lost! Does anybody want to lose to Penrith on Grand Final night?

PENRITH, AUSTRALIA - MAY 10: Panthers fans show their support during the round 10 NRL match between Penrith Panthers and Canterbury Bulldogs at BlueBet Stadium on May 10, 2024, in Penrith, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

11. We probably say this every year but I can't ever remember such a competition wide injury crisis like this. Souths and the Warriors have been decimated while the Titans, Manly and Brisbane are all way down on troops. There are always injuries but this just feels different.

12. I don't blame Shane Flanagan for saying his Dragons were "so bad you have to laugh" after Thursday night's "effort". You have to laugh, or else you'd cry. Plenty of Dragons fans were crying tears of frustration seeing that coming off a bye. Despite some positive signs, they just can't really get going.

RELATED: And then the wheels fell off: Dragons showing signs of mental weakness as fadeouts mount

13. Brad Athur handled his removal as coach of the Eels with class and grace. Interviewing so soon after being sacked can go one of two ways. He made the most of it and should be held in high esteem. It won't be long until he's back in a role somewhere.

14. The Warriors showed incredible guts and bravery in standing down Addin Fonua-Blake this past weekend. The club's culture is bigger than any one player, including their superstar prop. Other clubs could learn from this.

Addin Fonua-Blake in action. (Photo: Flickr- @NAPARAZZI)

15. I do get a little annoyed by the fact Mitchell Moses has missed a month of footy and all the talk this weekend was could he return and play Origin? Eels fans would want him thinking only of helping the struggling blue and golds.

16. A question was posed online earlier as to "who is running the Tigers" while Shane Richardson is in England and Benji Marshall is in Fiji? During a bye round ... in 2024, where you can teleconference within seconds. With a back room full of stall who have mobile phones. It's worth remembering players, coaches and officials are all allowed lives outside of the game.

17. Reece Walsh does have an error in his game but he plays the game at twice the speed of most other players. It's going to happen and it's a trade off you have to make. All the top class players seem to see things that others can't. Obviously you want to take the errors out of his game but if he isn't trying the things he does, he isn't Reece Walsh.

18. This is going to sound horrible but sometimes an injury can work out, long-term for a club. Thomas Weaver has instantly improved the Titans attack since coming in for Tanah Boyd. You never want to see a player injured but sometimes it's the only way a coach will make a switch.

NRL Pre-Season - Broncos v Titans
SUNSHINE COAST, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 12: Thomas Weaver of the Titans looks to pass during the NRL Trial Match between the Brisbane Broncos and Gold Coast Titans at Sunshine Coast Stadium on February 12, 2023 in Sunshine Coast, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

19. Death, taxes and a try on debut for an outside back. Three absolutes. Tony Francis crossed for his first try, operating with one arm, in a brilliant effort in his first NRL appearance. I love it!

20. In a pretty subpar round of footy, I found myself actively hoping for Golden Point in the Broncos/Titans clash. Something about that rivalry! As with most local derby games, form goes out the window. What a win by a Titans side held together by tape. Loved it!