SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 19: Tepai Moeroa of the Eels runs with the ball during the round 19 NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and the Canterbury Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium on July 19, 2018 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

Tepai Moeroa signing with the Melbourne Storm on a mid-season deal may have been the most surprising move of the 2021 NRL season.

After switching to rugby union at the end of the 2018 NRL season, Moeroa made just seven appearances for the New South Wales Waratahs over a year and a half in the 15-man game.

He then switched back to NRL, with the 112-game former Parramatta player signing with Craig Bellamy's outfit in the Victorian capital.

He made his club debut for the Storm on Saturday night in what turned out to be a narrow win over the Manly Sea Eagles, playing just ten minutes from the bench, but coming up with seven tackles in a busy stint.

Moeroa will be keen on attempting to expand his role in the Melbourne system over the remaining games in 2021, but is also keen on staying in Melbourne beyond the conclusion of 2022.

He told the media on Monday afternoon that while he enjoyed his time in union, things didn't work out and he is now keen on using the Storm's reputation for developing players to his advantage.

“I’d love to stay at the Storm (beyond this season),” he said.

“The players and the coaching staff have all been welcoming, and they have a reputation for developing players.

“I’d be crazy to not want to stay.”

He acknowledged the challenges of breaking into the Melbourne outfit though, who currently sit at the top of the table and haven't lost since early in the season, currently on an insane 17-game winning streak.

“It’s hard trying to debut for Melbourne as they’ve got outstanding depth in the forward pack,” he said.

“If I can hold on to a bench spot or something like that and play some finals footy, it would be awesome.”