Boasting a trio from the Melbourne Storm's 2022 forward pack as their marquee signings in Jesse Bromwich, brother Kenny and Felise Kaufusi, Wayne Bennett's Dolphins side has struggled to attract star players in the backline, most notably missing out on Reece Walsh and Cameron Munster.
As the season gets closer and predicted Round 1 lineups come in, the troubles the Dolphins may face are becoming clearer to see, and Daley gave a blunt assessment, going so far as to say they are favourites for the wooden spoon.
Daley began highlighting the depth of the Dolphin's forward pack, which also includes Mark Nicholls and Jarrod Wallace but then turned his attention to their backline, focusing on the weaknesses in a halves pairing of Antony Milford and Sean O'Sullivan.
“When you look out wide there's not a lot of guys that really you would say have that line breaking ability, I think they've got some speed there with Edrick Lee, Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow... then who is going to create that space to get them in,” Daley told The Big Sports Breakfast.
“Who is going to create the opportunity to put them in that space, I can't see Milford rediscovering his best football.
“I think he'll have a solid year under Wayne (Bennett) because I think he enjoys playing under him and Wayne can get the best out of these players but I think his best is past him.
“Sean O'Sullivan plays with a lot of control but you don't see him as a line breaking half, he's more of a control number seven.
“I just don't see where the points are going to come from, to get them into positions to be able to put on their plays or play off the cuff or whatever style of footy they may play under Wayne Bennett but I just don't see the creativity there.”
The Dolphins, who are believed to be well below the salary cap, will likely have to wait until 2024 before a new star joins their backline, prompting Daley's final comments on their prospects of finishing last.
“They'd have to be favourites for the wooden spoon, I haven't ranked them 1-17 yet but I think they'll be close,” Daley said.
The Dolphins have a tough round one matchup against the Sydney Roosters to kick off their season on March 5, but they'll nevertheless be hoping they can pull off the upset in their first-ever NRL game.