Choose one|Brett Morris, Josh Mansour, Tom Trbojevic

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Updated: July 15, 2016

Choose one| Who is the best replacement for Semi Radradra?

The Origin period is done and dusted with many coaches facing the gruelling prospect of finishing the season with limited trades. Round 18 also provides Supercoaches with an unprecedented and unexpected challenge with injury to Eels winger Semi Radradra.

Byes to popular Origin period teams Raiders, Bulldogs, Cowboys and Tigers will create chaos  however it is Radradra’s position in many teams that is questionable after recent form and off-field issues.

Outside of CTW guns Jarrod Croker, Tohu Harris, Joseph Leilua and Cameron Munster, there is a log-jam of quality options. With coaches spoilt for choice, it is hoped we can sift through the madness and decide on who is the best option for the run-home.

Brett Morris
Choose One

Since joining the Bulldogs in 2015, Brett Morris has added a new dimension to coach Des Hasler’s attack.

A three-match, seven try performance since returning from a knee injury has coaches salivating at the thought of an in-form Morris. Outside of brother Josh, Brett Morris has piled on Anthony Milford-like attacking numbers over the past month.

All good things come to an end and heres why. Lets look at Morris’ work-rate on the wing. By comparison to former winger, now centre Curtis Rona, the Bulldogs left-wing has seen no considerable difference in work-rate over the past two seasons. In fact there is less than a 3-percent difference in the work-rate of Curtis Rona (18.2) and Brett Morris (18.7) when on the wing since 2015. This is indicated by their base statistics (in brackets) and base PPM.

What this means is Morris isn’t receiving more ball, rather executing his opportunities better. It should be noted that the Bulldogs have faced poor defensive teams in the Roosters and West Tigers, plus an under-manned Broncos side over the past three weeks.

Josh Mansour
Choose One.

Mansour’s representative debut was a foregone conclusion, however many owners of the Panthers’ winger would of choose not to believe it. It was always the case, a healthy Mansour would be on the cusp of Blues selection and this season he proved that with a return to form.

When we look at Mansour’s stats, we don’t necessarily look at tries or base statistics, rather evasive attacking numbers. Offloads, tackle busts and line breaks equate for 21.1 points per game, or 66-percent of his total attacking output.

This number was noticeably down last season, whereby Mansour fell off the radar of many coaches. What if he scored tries like Brett Morris or Semi Radradra? We would have a bona-fide Supercoach gun on our hands. Unfortunately that is not the case due to the Panthers’ struggles in the halves and at left-centre.

Mansour will always be inconsistent given his lack of scoring opportunities, however if he does score, expect a 80-point score.

The Panthers winger is the second most traded in player this round with Radradra owners exiting with the Blues debutant.

Tom Trbojevic
Tom Trbojevic. Choose One.

Manly young-gun Tom Trbojevic may not be all hype after all. He flashed glimpses of his potential last season only to be pigeonholed on the wing and used as an injury replacement.

Under new coach Trent Barrett, Trbojevic has been set free, not by choice but circumstance. He has been one of the lone bright-spots in a relatively dark season at Manly.

With the writing on the wall regarding fullback Brett Stewart, Trbojevic has been trust into his most favoured position and coaches are taking notice. The Manly flyer is this weeks’ most traded in player with 5-percent of all trades ditching Radradra for Trbojevic.

What sets Trbojevic apart is his ability to consistently put up attacking numbers. We’re not taking about a consistent try scorer or someone who always breaks the line, but a player who is tallying up just about every attacking statistic each week.

Trbojevic’s evasion statistics are a winner with 13 line breaks and eight offloads, but also his creative numbers that include nine try assists. Evidently this has occurred in all three backline positions he has played this season.

In terms of attacking output, centre (42.5) has been the Manly winger’s best position. This followed by wing (33.9) and fullback (25.5). Base stats are also at their highest at centre, though they are inflated by defensive workload.


Verdict

There is nothing to suggest Bulldogs’ star Brett Morris will not be a 60-point FB/CTW. The Bulldogs fabled left-edge will continue to throw up opportunities as seen with Curtis Rona over the past two seasons. Morris has shown the ability to capitalise on his chances and will likely remain a Supercoach gun. Expect a couple of performances with limited attack to drop his price/average in the coming weeks.

Mansour’s poor try scoring ability rules him out of this contest however he is the best of the next bunch of names at the CTW position, including Jake Wighton, Jordan Rapana, Euan Aitken and Will Hopoate.

Price, consistency and duel position make Tom Trbojevic an attractive option. While his ceiling is lower than Morris, his high floor and consistent base and attacking numbers will prove crucial for the run home. We’ve seen it all before, when a team lacks superstar players, it only takes one in-form back become Supercoach relevant. Expect most of Manly’s attacking stats to stem from Trbojevic with the Manly fullback to bypass Morris by season’s end.

Winner – Tom Trbojevic. 

Integrated stats explained. Choose One.

Integrated stats explained.

Have your say. Who would you choose at the CTW position?
Choose one| Brett Morris, Josh Mansour, Tom Trbojevic – NRL Supercoach

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