4: Sydney Roosters
Luke Keary still needs to prove he can carry this exceptional Roosters team. In his second season being the chief playmaker, Keary will need to find the right halves partner if they want to challenge for the title. Lachlan Lam should be lining up next to Keary for the beginning, but we will see how the two work together. They will welcome back Victor Radley and Sam Verrills to boost their already world-class forward pack; expect James Tedesco to still be the best fullback and help the Roosters finish in the top four.
3: Parramatta Eels
I have picked the Eels to finish in the top four for the past two seasons and I’m sticking with that trend. The Eels have one of the best rosters in the game and have a settled spine that consists of Clint Gutherson, Dylan Brown, Mitchell Moses, and Reed Mahoney. The four have played more than enough games to finally take this Eels’ team further into the finals. They will need to find the balance in attack and defense as in the beginning of last season, when their attack was flawless, but they struggled further into the season. They have recruited well going into this season and boast a top five forward pack. Surely the Eels can get out of week two of the finals this year?
2: Canberra Raiders
They made it all the way to the preliminary final without Josh Hodgson last season: imagine if he was there? Would the Raiders have suffered that massive loss against the Storm? The Raiders will be prepared and will be a top four team this year. Jack Wighton is coming off career-best form and will be up there again as the best player in the regular season. Losing John Bateman hurts, but they are blessed with an incredible forward pack, led by Josh Papalii. Ricky Stuart will have his squad firing, so expect another strong season from the Green Machine.
1: South Sydney Rabbitohs
South Sydney may end up scoring the most points by any team in the regular season this year. Adding Josh Mansour and Jai Arrow to an already stacked team, they will be the best team in attack without question. This was evidenced last year where they could score 30 to 40 points without any issues, but how they finish in defense will be the true test to their success this year. They also boast one of the best backlines and spine in the game. With the game remaining as fast as last year, expect South Sydney to win multiple high-scoring games and take out the minor premiership for the first time in 32 years.