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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Turner

GameDay Squad Rugby League: Round 14 Player In Focus

Each week we will do a deep dive into a player that had a strong performance in the previous round. The player may not have had the top score of the weekend but a solid outing nonetheless. I’ll look to cover the previous rounds performance, outlook for the season ahead, outlook for 2024 and beyond and my recommendation for this player. Let us know your thoughts on who we have down below on all of our social channels: twitter, facebook, instagram, discord.

NRL Fantasy round 14 player in focus

Player of the Week

Player Name: James Tedesco Age: 30 Club: Sydney Roosters Position: Winger/Fullback Round 14 Score: 90 2023 Ave Score: 49

Round 14 Performance

Teddy is back! After the Blues disappointing loss in Game 1, Teddy had come under some criticism. Against the Bulldogs he showed his critics how good he still is. In this performance he came away with 2 tries, 1 try assist, 1 line break, and 11 tackle busts on attack, this came to 63 points. It’s great to see him put together back-to-back 90-point performances. He’s averaged 200 running metres and 10 tackle busts across these two games, this is more like the Teddy we know. He won’t be scoring two tries every week but hopefully we see the tackle busting Teddy continue this good form.

2023 Outlook

After a rollercoaster of a year, Teddy is starting to put some great fantasy performances together. Over the next six weeks the Roosters have the Panthers, Knights, Raiders, Sea Eagles, Storm and a bye. Teddy is likely to miss the Knights game due to NSW duties and will be on short turnarounds for the Raiders and Storm fixtures. After seeing Teddy play the full 80 off a short turnaround from Game 1, I believe he can be a good starting option even over the Origin period. However, we have seen Trent Robinson rest his Origin players in the past but this year it might be different as the Roosters currently sit outside the top eight. It’s just something to keep in mind especially if the Roosters have one of the last games of the round. Coaches might be caught out if Teddy is a late out and they don’t have a backup ready to go. Once the 2023 Origin series is complete, Teddy will likely be a starter for me most weeks. To begin the season, I had Teddy projected to rank 2nd in the WFB position and after this weekend’s performance, he is still 2nd in my WFB projections.

GDS Dynasty Ranking

At 30 years old, most of Teddy’s career looks to be in the past but I believe he still has a few good years in him. He is contracted to the Roosters until the end of the 2025 season. If Teddy is able to stay fit, he should still remain as one of the top five WFBs through till the end of his contract. I have players like Mitchell and Edwards ranked above him through the dynasty lens but there really isn’t much in it.

JT’s Call

It’s more common for a WFB to have quiet games than other positions. This is due to the low number of base points that WFBs generate through tackles and running metres. Earlier this season Teddy did have me concerned that he may have lost a bit of his edge but that has been put to bed after his last two performances for the Roosters. Teddy has been an elite option at WFB for many seasons now and he has the sort of game that is great for the GDS scoring as tackle breaks are worth three points. This season he is averaging 5.5 tackle breaks a game, this is down from 7.2 in 2022. I think he can work his way back to around 7 tackles breaks a game.

When making my WFB selections every week, Teddy is usually somewhere in the mix for me. Often, I select him to start but it really comes down to if I believe other WFBs have better matchups. We all know his fantasy pedigree, but Teddy is someone that I’ll be watching very closely over the next month. I’m comfortable to start him for sure but when it comes to games when he may be named to back up from Origin, I would always have a backup option in case Robinson decides to give him the week off. If you don't have his card, I would be doing what I could to acquire one as soon as possible. This would be a play for this season and your squad's future.



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