SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 19: Ricky Leutele, Edrick Lee and Jayson Bukuya of the Sharks celebrate a try scored by Lee during the round three NRL match between the Cronulla Sharks and the St George Illawarra Dragons at Southern Cross Group Stadium on March 19, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Parramatta is eyeing off Edrick Lee as they look to fill the void left by Semi Radradra.

Edrick Lee has failed to fire over the past two seasons, best known for his shocker against the Melbourne Storm in Canberra’s preliminary final in 2016.

He was deemed ‘surplus to requirements’ a few months later, released to Cronulla Sharks, where he was barely sighted in first grade all year.

But it appears Parramatta are contemplating throwing the former Maroons’ 18th man a lifeline, despite already possessing a strong depth pool for their backline.

Despite the departure of superstar Semi Radradra, the likes of Jarryd Hayne, Michael Jennings, Clint Gutherson, Bevan French, Josh Hoffman, Kirisome Auva’a and Brad Takairangi all remain in the Eels’ squad.

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The loss of Radradra could have massive ramifications on Parramatta’s season, the Fijian flyer doing a lot of heavy lifting for the side’s forward pack coming out of their end.

While Lee doesn’t bust tackles like Radradra, he certainly has the potential.

Lee stands at seven centimetres taller than Semi, and two kilograms heavier. If Brad Arthur could help Lee reduce his errors, the winger could be anything.

Coming off a lacklustre season where he featured in the NRL only five times, Lee would be a cheap pickup, particularly after the Sharks picked up the likes of Josh Dugan, Aaron Gray and Matt Moylan for their backline.

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Whether he can recapture the form that saw him named in Queensland’s State of Origin squad a few years ago is anyone’s guess, but if there’s someone that could find out, it’s Brad Arthur.

37 COMMENTS

  1. Is it a life line… he should be playing first grade at any club but for some reason the sharks can’t use him properly

    • markeyy, Lee can’t catch a football, especially under pressure. He single handedly destroyed the Raiders hopes a few season ago and needs to go to catching school to learn the fundamentals (along with Tom and George Burgess) if he wants to be truly worthy of playing first grade. His ability to read the and judge whether to come in, slide, stay on his opposing winger or drop back to cover a kick also needs work IMO as well. So no, I don’t think that he is an automatic starter in first grade simply because he is big.

  2. I highly doubt the Sharks would release him unless they have a big name winger lined up, they missed out on Mitchell Pearce which means they still have room under the cap. The only reason Lee didn’t play much last year was because Beale and Feki were the wingers who are both better players. Beale has moved on meaning Lee will be fighting it out with Aaron Gray for the other wing spot and if Lee doesn’t get it he’ll be next cab off the rank when injuires hit. With no salary cap pressure Flanno won’t release his backup winger unless he has better options coming, the Sharks picked him up on the cheap in the first place after he was released by Canberra three weeks before Round 1 last year.

  3. +1

    But he IS handy if you want to change a light bulb in an 8 ft ceiling and don’t have a step ladder. 😂😂😂

  4. Sadly no one can ever replace Semi. I consider Semi the best winger I’ve ever seen (only Wendell came close). We’re going to miss Semi greatly this coming season.

    As for Lee, I agree with some of the comments posted above in that he is NOT first grade material. No matter how big or strong or fast you are, if you can’t catch a ball under pressure then you shouldn’t be playing first grade. If Parra do sign him, then he’ll be playing with Wenty unless there’s a string of injuries for those players ahead of him.

  5. SSTID mate I know I have said this before but if you see a comment that you think is just there to get you riled up just scroll past mate. Don’t get caught up in other people’s rubbish, especially those you don’t know or more importantly don’t know you. Stop feeding them mate and hopefully it will end.

    • I’m not disagreeing at all mate. That’s just how I think he should deal with it. Like I said, they don’t know him other than what he posts on here so i just think he should stop wasting his time on it.

  6. On the story. I see this as a depth signing, with very low risk involved, so am not fussed if it happens.

    I don’t know what Lees problems stem from. If it is confidence related that can be fixed with the right coaching. Either way, more depth never hurts.

    • Cheers eels47. It is always the same two in any case. They totally destroyed a good forum with their BS and they got the “angry eagle” thrown in a cage! I would appreciate it if all here would put these two clowns in their place or at least ignore them trying to ingratiate themselves upon you with comments like, “I agree, eels47” as they try to rub up against your legs and purr softly!

      We were having a great discussion too that I would appreciate the “regular gang” (ALL those the “angry eagle” and I regularly discuss and banter with). Interested in the thoughts of the regular “normals” only! I will repost here:

      ParraMatt January 27, 2018 at 5:32 am
      Im not a fan of so many coaches using halfs as a quick fix to there dummy half woes.Sure i understand the reasoning behind it but IMO i dont think it will get you a title.I see your dummy as one of the remaining positions that is truly a specialist position.The attributes one must have is far greater than what alot seem to understand and its from years of playing in the position you learn this.Sure the basics are obvious but theres so much more to it right down to breathing techniques while in play,positional play.Referees are tried to be taught coming thru how the need to understand the short cuts on the field is so important.This is a instinct a dummy must naturally have an cant be taught.Yes some halfs will have this but alot wont.And yes alot of dummys were halfs coming thru the juniors but most are in the number 9 well before first grade.When did a team last win the comp with a half playing 9

      [The “angry eagle” had a relevant on topic here that got removed because of the feminists even though it was not offensive]

      SSTID_1970 January 27, 2018 at 11:58 am
      ParraMatt, I thought moving Peter Wallace to hooker was a dumb move but the Panthers struck gold with that move (OK, I’ll give Barney Rubble that one – although the suggestion probably came from Fred Flintsone).

      “I see your dummy as one of the remaining positions that is truly a specialist position.”

      So not a case “as long as the ball gets to the intended receiver it’s good enough” then? Next you will be saying that “quality service from dummy half” actually matters! OK, now that I have gotten that out of my system… you are spot on ParraMatt. That is one of the MAIN reasons why the Storm have been SO good for so long, they have the best in the business in this position in Cam Smith (can’t stand him but I will give him that). Smith plays the opposition like a maestro plays a Stradivarius violin. Playing someone out of position at dummy half is often the single most reason why a teams attack fails and their momentum is killed. So many times I have seen a backline look crisp and moving as one or forwards running into gaps only to have the pass go astray or be misdirected or on other occasions a dummy half choose the wrong option and either way an opportunity is wasted.

      “This is a instinct a dummy must naturally have an cant be taught.”

      Great point! Instincts CANNOT be taught, THAT is why it is SO important for that game at grassroots level that these things are identified early and kids are placed in the correct positions. Let’s talk about “the elephant in the room” at a grassroots level… the POLITICS that goes on, with the coaches son, or the coaches best mates kid etc. getting a position in the spine they are just not cut out for. Other kids who possess the instincts and the ability to respond to them and were born for these positions are moved elsewhere (square pegs in round holes, I bang on about it all the time). If we are honest, either playing the game or supporting our kids who play the game, we have all seen it. It is much, much worse in soccer by the way. This needs to be changed FAST. But how? There is a real shortage of quality hookers and halves these days. It seems everyone is more interested in being a FB. I have played FB and loved it but it is NOT for everybody. The same thing goes for the halves and hooker (i.e. dummy half).

      Honestly, I can see how moving DCE to hooker could work but I question the timing of it at this point as there are so few options to cover the halves at Manly it would be weakening a crucial position in order to fill another. That would be like removing the pillar of a foundation to use it somewhere else. You are still going to have a BIG problem.

      • This was actually an opportunity for “the 3 Amigos” to prove their wisdom. Are you boys still conferring? Do you need more time? Perhaps ParraMatt, Kev and Stefan69 are in fact the true “wise men” representing Parramatta and might beat you to the punch and press the buzzer first if you don’t hurry up. Tick tock, tick tock…

      • It isn’t just that instinct, it is defending in the middle. Halves are generally jept hidden out wide, or have the protection of a second rower a la Lockyer and Carroll. Moving to hooker requires more direct front on defence. That is one reason Wallace made the switch effectively. He is willing to put his body on the line and stand in front of the big boys. Lets not kid ourselves though, while he has made a good go of it, Wallace is not a top tier hooker. Maybe if he switched younger he mightbhave got there.

        I think DCE has the required instinct, but the defence will hurt him without doubt. He just doesn’t strike me as willing or able to take the hits. I firmly believe he is a hslf, and a good one, who just needs a decent 6.

        As for junior leagues, it is obvious there is a real lack of “footballers” coming through. I think the problem is junior coaches try to emulate the game plans of NRL coaches. Too much structure and not enough skill development. Something needs to be done, but i too am not sure what.

        • Yes mate but I think my point is a valid one about the politics in the game at grassroots level. My kid has been affected by it even though he was a gun hooker but politics robbed him of the position because he chose to be loyal to his old coach and when he got punted the next year the new coach didn’t have a position for him. He went to another club and the incumbent hooker was rubbish but his dad was best mates with the coach and the whole team suffered for it. I’m telling you it happens. Either that or coaches do not properly recognise the requisite skills for the position or is unable to correctly identify the skills of the kids in their team.

          As ParraMatt says, instinct cannot be taught and if the kids that show signs of this are not recognised or put into the appropriate positions then this will affect them as they progress in the game.

        • Wallace was one of the best, if not the best defensive halfbacks before his switch. Despite other limitations few questioned his toughness. As a result the switch was a success. I don’t think DCE has the defence, toughness and attitude to make a successful switch. Besides elite half-backs are even rarer than dummy halves. Unless a seriously good halfback somehow falls into Manly’s lap, a DCE switch would only weaken the most important position in the game.

  7. When we got Semi he couldn’t catch or read the play and he turned out all right.
    If anyone can get him going it will be Arthur.
    Worth the punt if we can get him cheap enough but I wouldn’t be throwing to much coin at him.

    • Great point kev. I will never forget when Semi stepped out of play to try to knock a kick for touch back in with his feet clearly on the ground. He definitely came a long way.

      • Agreed. It would be a low risk signing, given his price and our depth, so if BA thinks he’s worthy of a contract, then welcome aboard Edrick Lee.

        I know we are still running at 28 out of our 30 man squad, and unless something has changed we are leaving the 30th spot vacant until June 30 (max allowable time) for Semi, so the next signing (which has to be done by March 1) will complete the roster, unless we were to drop / swap a player of course.

        • Semi won’t be back any time soon eelsalmighty.
          He will stay in France and chase the big dollars.
          We might see him back in 3 or 4 years time but no sooner.
          BA is doing things right and is holding the two last spots open for the right player.
          We won’t just jump at anyone to fill the spots. Some clubs might run into salary cap issues before the deadline and we are in a prime position to pounce. If no one worth while comes along we will promote from within.

        • I think you’re spot on Kev, but I’m sure we’ll leave the spot open (until June 30) just in case (for Semi).

          I think we’ve been looking for another big forward, even before F. Pritchard retired, and that’s looking very unlikely now, hence maybe (maybe) BA does have his eye on a few out of favour players he thinks he could get back to FG and/or maybe we do get lucky and find the right player in the next few weeks.

        • These transfer windows and player trade deadlines, it might as well be in hieroglyphics mate. It is that indecipherable it might as well be written in a dead language. You will need to send me a flowchart so I can follow what you are talking about. 😉

        • It’s pretty simple. Out of your 30 man squad you need a MIN. of:

          24 contracted by the 1st of November (the year prior – 2017 for the 2018 season)
          29 by the 1st of March (for that season)
          30 by June 30.

          It ensures clubs are ready for the season, allows them to add a player prior to the June 30 window, and ensures they don’t meet their salary cap by running a small squad (less than 30 players).

          As per above, we are at 28, and I’m expecting us to leave a spot for Semi (mid season, just in case), so If nothing comes up by the deadlines, we will simply promote a junior from within to make up the numbers.

        • Cheers mighty. I’m burning the midnight oil ATM so it is a bit late to fully digest this now but I will so the link for future reference. Thanks for sharing the “wisdom”. DON’T start me mighty… 😉

  8. Sadly he’s not not even a back up winger anymore, younger guys like Ramien, Katoa and Lumelume are in front of him in the pecking order

  9. the 2 pass rule is (or was, its been a while since ive coached) what is killing the skill development of junior hookers IMO. For those who don’t know essentially until U12s 2 passes are required each play otherwise possession is lost. So junior coaches only teach their hooker to pick up and pass to the half. They aren’t given the opportunity to run from dummy half, so they don’t learn how to capitalise on fast play the balls, engage markers or target weaknesses/shortages in a defensive line. Essentially all decision making is removed from the position. Now when we consider most 1st grade players are identified by age 15, and we don’t allow hookers to develop their tactical instincts until age 13, it is clear to me why we aren’t developing quality hookers.

      • Well in that case you know more about this than me eels47. I was unaware of it’s existance until now. There may be more to it but this also is an important piece in the puzzle as I see it. I think another part of the problem is the wrong kids are being put into these positions for whatever reasons, be they political or coaches failing to see the potential that is there or wanting to utilise a specific kid elsewhere where there is a weakness, who knows.

        I guess you can always look at the Cooper Cronk example of a player who was playing at hooker up to his debut in first grade when he was moved to the halves and never looked back. I am not sure how this can be adequately addressed though. But there needs to be a change to help identify and train these kids from an early age. Perhaps the NRL can invest more into training clinics or something of that nature as Newcombe and Roche did years ago to try and identify and mold emerging young talent. Your thoughts boys?

        • Yeah, when i started playing over 30 years ago the rule was in place. I guess the purpose is to encourage the play away from the ruck. But it does work to limit the ability and creativity of the dummynhalf snd the half. That said, it is only until 12, and kids younger thssn that would need to be quite exceptional to be able to make the decisions on playing what they see.

          What it does do, at least in my experience from many years ago, is see players who don’t like to run get put in those positions, which can lead to the “lesser” players in the top positions. These guys then struggle once they are allowed to play a bit as they don’t have the skil to stay in those positions as they get older.

    • Brilliant insight into the problem we were discussing on an earlier thread, gregjm. It explains a lot. I was not aware of this rule and my experience is limited to under U15s and above so this is news to me. Valuable insight and a weakness in the grassroots system that impacts later development IMO. If kids with the requisite skill sets and instincts required to succeed in this position (as well as in the halves) are not properly identified they could be lost to other positions where their true potential may not be realised.

      I can understand that the purpose of the 2 pass rule would be to stop large boys getting into dummy half and steamrolling the opposition but to hamstring hookers (dummy halves) by so limiting their options from dummy half is akin to touch football where possession is lost if the dummy half is touched in possession of the ball. It seems pointless and limits the options available to kids at this level. It also would be responsible for producing a generation of automatons that don’t know how to think or react to changes in the defence or options that they see in front of them (a staggered defensive line, a slow retreating defender, a sliding defence etc.). Kids with instincts and skills need to be able to adjust and play to what they see in front of them. Or am I wrong about any or all of this?

      • Yeah SSTID I do think you are wrong about the junior rules. Mod rules only apply to under 12s. Before this participation is paramount. Getting kids to enjoy the game, develop skills, develop fitness and learn about teamwork is more important than results. Kids will leave in droves if the larger, more mature children are allowed to dominate possession in games. This is even more critical in areas where large amounts of islander kids are participating. Remember also girls compete with boys until this age too. There is plenty of time after 12 to learn the intricacies of dummy half play. In fact they should bring back age/weight restrictions during this period as well.

    • That rule is critical to junior football. It stops possession being dominated by the one or two biggest fastest kids.

      The generation of automatons are caused by recruitment tactics. In generations past footballers were identified and turned into athletes. Now athletes are identified and turned into footballers. It has caused a glut of tall, strong backrowers and outside backs who do not require high levels of skill, instinct and natural affinity with the game. Little blokes who do not have the desired body shape, but usually have the skill and intelligence are neglected. This is why we have a serious lack of quality halves and hookers. Would the likes of Langer, Johns Alexander, Toovey etc be developed today? Think about the glut of seriously top line halves that were competing for rep honours in the 80’s and 90’s and compare it to the lack thereof today. At any one time we have 2 or 3 top halfbacks and after Smith the lack of dummyhalves is even more rare.

      This is also a long term consequence of the move to the 10 metre rule, IMO, the worst rule change the game has ever experienced. But that is another rant or another day.

  10. I read recently that junior league in qld doesnt have the same junior rules as nsw(not sure if its true) if is true it explains why qld seems to have alot more natural 6,7,9`s available to them.As for comments being raised about politics in junior league it is so true.Alot of the time the kids getting the chances are who the perants know not so much the kids talent.I do feel however this is becoming stronger and stronger.Seems so much now that kids making early rep teams are basically penciled in by the age of twelve and alot off the time it seems its from being coaches pet or the perants being chummy with the coaches.At this point once the kids are in the junior rep system its so hard to be overlooked.It doesnt seem to matter that by the age they are 16 alot of the time these kids shouldnt be in the top 18 at there club let alone be playing rep they are in the system.At this age most kids have worked this out and shrug there shoulders and walk away.I ask many my sons mates why they stopped playing and they all pretty much say one thing.My dad aint a ass lick and im not a islander.Im glad to say most my sons mates have gone back playing out of love of the game and the mateship it brings but its sad so many walk away around that 15 age because of politics only to return in there 20`s outta love Plus there now the size of the some the rep boys they were playing back then at 14

  11. Seems many have forgotten manu vataveis horror night under the high ball….he went on to be safe and great…..

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