Bryce Cartwright was brought into the Titans by Garth Brennan as a creative outlet in the forward pack. Brennan has worked closely with Cartwright since he was 12 years old and like Titans fans know what Cartwright is capable of.
Despite the promise, Cartwright got sin-binned in his return to Penrith Park and had a bizarre brain snap against the Storm that resulted in avoiding tackling a player, baffling pundits and fans alike.
Only assisting with one try this season and staring down the barrel of a stint in reserve grade adding to the Titans’ woes and being on around $500k a season, Cartwright has failed to live up to the hype and is one of the worst signings of the season.
Jack Bird was brought in by Wayne Bennett to replace Ben Hunt who was St George bound. Bird signed a four-year deal worth $4 million to bolster the Broncos’ halves.
Bird didn’t start well with the Broncos as he missed a large portion of the Broncos’ pre-season with a controversial shoulder injury. He then struggled to make an impact in both the centres and then at five-eighth after being promised a half role by Bennett himself.
There is no doubt Bird is a talented player but the Broncos had the option to sign proven halves such as James Maloney, Cooper Cronk and Blake Green but opted for the Shark’s premiership winner. Bird is a talented player but has failed to prove his salary and ability with the Broncos.
Leilani Latu was coming off career-best form with the Panthers and a season ending injury, and Titans coach Garth Brennan was looking to bring in a big forward pack for the Titans.
Latu had the attributes to be a successful signing for the Titans, becoming a fan favourite at the foot of the mountains and having the ball playing skills not typical for a front rower.
Latu is rumoured to be on around 500k a season and only averages 60 meters a game for the Titans and has been playing reserve grade for Tweed Heads since round four.
Matt Moylan traded places with James Maloney, leaving his boyhood club Penrith for Cronulla. Moylan has had questions asked over his defense at fullback and five-eighth.
Moylan has been playing mostly five-eighth for the Sharks and is yet to score a try, howeve,r has registered four try assists in nine games. Moylan has had criticism over his reported contract of $900k a season with the Sharks.
Even captain Paul Gallen admitted that Moylan was struggling to click in the Sharks’ system.
Jarryd Hayne came back to Parramatta after a short-lived gig in the NFL and a controversial stint with the Gold Coast Titans.
Hayne looked to reignite his rugby league career after taking Parramatta to a grand final in 2009. With Semi Radradra leaving, Hayne was bought in to replace the void of the try-scoring Fijian. Injuries and poor form have riddled Hayne’s return to the Eels with four games and no tries, playing a factor to the 16th placed Eels and summarising Parramatta’s recent woes in one signing.
Kieran Foran joined the Bulldogs after two average seasons with Parramatta and the Warriors, linking up with former coach Des Hasler at the time.
Foran has failed to fire for the Bulldogs looking like a shadow of the former grand finalist’s self.
Only assisting and scoring one try respectively whilst playing a pivotal half role in a struggling Bulldogs outfit, Foran is having a tough time fitting in.
With salary cap constraints and form concerns Foran may be on the outer with the Dogs.
Fan favourite Josh Reynolds was forced out of the Bulldogs, and joined the Tigers aiming to cement the five-eighth position under a new look Ivan Cleary side. With Reynolds suffering numerous injuries and Benji Marshall’s return to the Tigers, Reynolds has struggled making an impact at his new club.
On a reported 750k a season with the Tigers and only playing 29 minutes this season, Reynolds averages nearly 26k a minute, not far behind Bill Gates earning on average $78k a minute.
Leaving the Roosters as a representative player, Evans joined Parramatta and was expected to bulk up the Eels’ forward pack.
Evans has been underwhelming with an average of 6.3 runs per game and 49 meters gained. Dropped to reserve grade playing for Wentworthville and suffering an injury, Evans has failed to perform for a struggling Eels side and has proved to be a poor signing.
Written by: Thomas Craig