The NRL season is almost upon us and as SuperCoaches are in peak Draft mode they’ll want to shake off the rust and get some practice in by mock drafting before the real thing.
Mock drafting is an essential part of your preparation, as it helps get you in the right mindset, training you to scan ahead for players to target, as well as teaching who to pick while under the pressure of a timer.
Practice drafts will also give you a good sense of how early players are being drafted, how long you can wait on certain players, reveals hidden gems you hadn’t considered and also lets you experiment with picks and your draft strategy.
While some SuperCoaches might not have the time to do a mock draft that doesn’t really count, have no fear, I have gone ahead and done one to run you through my mindset at the draft and to help you prepare for 2019.
In my Mock Draft I was randomly selected to draft at pick five in a ten person league, my favourite position to draft at since you don’t have to wait as long between picks.
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KFC SuperCoach NRL Draft 2020: Why mock drafting is importantSource:The Daily Telegraph
DRAFT PICKS FOR THE FIRST TWO ROUNDS
1.Damien Cook 2.James Tedesco 3.Payne Haas 4.Tom Trbojevic 5.Jason Taumalolo 6. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 7.Cameron Munster 8.Nathan Cleary 9.Kalyn Ponga 10.Cameron Smith
11.Ryan Matterson 12.David Klemmer 13.James Fisher-Harris 14.Josh Papalii 15.Cameron Murray 16.Mitch Moses 17.Cody Walker 18.Jai Arrow 19.Shaun Johnson 20.Jake Trbojevic
The first few picks of the draft are usually not surprising but Payne Haas at three was a bit of a shock, so expect him to go early. Tom Trbojevic has been getting a lot of hate from draft players, so I was hoping he would fall to me at fifth, but I was still very happy with Jason Taumalolo.
Roger-Tuivasa Sheck being taken at sixth overall was an absolute shock, and the person drafting at nine would have been shocked but stoked that Kalyn Ponga fell to him that late.
In Draft you want to use your early picks to try and get the best players possible, but also try and get one of the guns at the spine positions since depth here is extremely low.
But despite some of the best spine players going early, teams instead began filling up their forward packs in the second round. With the best 2RF in the game already in my team, I decided to grab Mitch Moses, who looks set for a big SuperCoach year.
Shaun Johnson and Jake Trbojevic falling to the end of the second round was a bit surprising considering their pedigree, so they are good value picks for players willing to take the risk.
Damien Cook was taken with the first overall pick in the draft. Picture: Brett Costello.Source:News Corp Australia
DRAFT PICKS FOR ROUNDS THREE TO FIVE
21. Daly Cherry Evans 22.Andrew Fifita 23.Valentine Holmes 24.Cameron McInnes 25. Ryan Papenhuyzen 26.Luke Keary 27.David Fifita 28.Clint Gutherson 29.Latrell Mitchell 30.John Bateman
31.Martin Taupau 32.Nathan Brown 33.Kenneath Bromwich 34.Josh Hodgson 35.Viliame Kikau 36.Reed Mahoney 37.Maika Sivo 38.David Nofoaluma 39.Tevita Pangai 40.Aiden Tolman
41.Addin Fonua-Blake 42.Anthony Milford 43.Corey Harawira-Naera 44.Paul Vaughan 45.Ken Maumalo 46.Apisai Koroisau 47.Charnze Nicholl-Klokstad 48.Connor Watson 49.Adam Reynolds 50.Sio Siua Taukeiaho
With players stacking their forwards in the previous rounds the best remaining spine options went quickly in these rounds, which I felt forced me to grab Ryan Papenhuyzen in the third round, given he was the last gun fullback remaining. John Bateman was a fantastic value pick despite his injury cloud, but was followed up by Martin Taupau on the turn. This player had now laid the foundations for a great forward pack, but he had missed out on good players at all the spine positions other than hooker, which could cost him later.
I wanted to wait on hooker and grab another good forward, but after Josh Hodgson went I felt I had to grab Reed Mahoney, arguably the last good hooker remaining at that point. A few CTW’s went straight after that and I am normally really against taking these guys early in the draft because they have the most depth of any position.
By the end of the fourth round we had seen five hookers, eight fullbacks, four halfbacks and three five-eighths gone, which just goes to show how quickly these low depth positions get filled.
While I said before I hate taking CTW’s early, I decided I wanted to challenge myself by taking one in the fifth round to see if I would still be happy with my team at the end, so took Ken Maumalo.
I drafted Ryan Papenhuyzen in the third round. Picture: AAP.Source:AAP
WHO DRAFTED THE BEST?
If I analysed every round we’d be here all day, so let’s just cut to the chase and see how everyone’s teams panned out and who came out on top.
Damien Cook, Jake Trbojevic, Daly Cherry-Evans, Aiden Tolman, Addin Fonua-Blake, Matt Lodge, Jazz Tevaga, Corey Norman (FLB), Boyd Cordner, Elliot Whitehead, Dylan Walker (5/8), Joey Leilua, Nic Cotric, Moses Mbye, Kevin Proctor, Euan Aitken, Tyrone Peachey
A solid team on paper, but took a risk drafting several players who will miss the start of the season with injury. His spine is questionable with Corey Norman at fullback and Dylan Walker at five-eighth.
James Tedesco, Shaun Johnson, Andrew Fifita, Tevita Pangai, Anthony Milford, Wade Graham, Jake Friend, Jesse Bromwich, Paul Momirovski, Zac Lomax, Trent Merrin, Josh Mansour, Dallin Watene-Zelezniak, Isaac Luke, Jordan McLean, Josh Aloiai, Tyrone Roberts
A well rounded team with a good range of guns at each position. Slightly weaker at hooker with Jake Friend, but he also nabbed Isaac Luke late as a great value pick.
Payne Haas, Jai Arrow, Valentine Holmes, David Nofoaluma, Corey Harawira-Naera, Luke Garner, Jayden Okunbor, Scott Drinkwater, Harry Grant, Jarome Luai, Nat Butcher, Dylan Brown, Nelson Asofa-Solomona, Tristan Sailor, Justin Olam, Bailey Simonsson, Patrick Carrigan
A solid forward pack, but his spine is weak with Harry Grant, Jarome Luai and Dylan Brown as starters, and some of his CTW options don’t seem likely to get a start.
Tom Trbojevic, Cody Walker, Cameron McInnes, Maika Sivo, Paul Vaughan, Tohu Harris, Kyle Flanagan, Shaun Lane, Ben Hunt, Jahrome Hughes, Daniel Tupou, Aaron Woods, Luciano Leilua, Brett Morris, Jordan Pereiara, Reece Robson, Jack Williams
On paper a pretty good team with a solid forward pack, backs and spine, but he took Cameron McInnes in the third round despite him being injured long term and there being better options on the board.
Team 5 (my team)
Jason Taumalolo, Mitch Moses, Ryan Papenhuyzen, Reed Mahoney, Ken Maumalo, Briton Nikora, James Tamou, Bronson Xerri, Michael Morgan, Curtis Sironen, Josh Addo-Carr, Josh McGuire, Kotoni Staggs, Moeki Fotuaika, Matt Eisenhuth, Jake Turpin, Peta Hiku
I was hoping Tom Trbojevic would fall to me at fifth, but still got Jason Taumalolo and arguably the best spine of the draft with Moses, Papenhuzen, Mahoney and Morgan. Despite experimenting with early CTW’s I’m still pretty happy with my team, but in hindsight I should have forgone Ken Maumalo and grabbed a better FRF or 5/8.
Taking Mitchell Moses in the second round was risky, but he looks primed for a big year in KFC SuperCoach. Picture: AAP.Source:AAP
SuperCoach NRL Draft: Sleepers and value picks to target late
SuperCoach NRL Draft 2020: Best players at every position
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Cameron Murray, Luke Keary, Viliame Kikau, Api Koroisau, Brodie Croft, Blake Fergusson, Liam Knight, Justin O’Neill, Jack Bird, Reagan Campbell-Gillard, Tyson Frizell, Joey Manu, Joe Ofahengaue, Blayke Brailey, Kodi Nikorima, Bradman Best
Going RTS over Ponga in the first round was an odd choice, and I think he went a bit early on several players including Croft, Knight, O’Neill, Bird and RCG. Did get some great bargain pics late with Joe Ofahengaue and Blayke Brailey.
Cameron Munster, Josh Papalii, David Fifita, Josh Hodgson, Charnze Nicholl-Klokstad, Mitch Barnett, Will Hopoate, Esan Marsters, Korbin Sims, Jarrod Wallace, Adam Doueihi, Kurt Capewell, Mitch Pearce, Kyle Feldt, Jayden Brailey, Ash Taylor, Josh Kerr
This guy is one of my mates and as much as it pains me to say I think he got a solid team, with a great spine and some high upside forwards. Jarrod Wallace (who I had my eye on) and Mitch Pearce were great value picks and made me furious, much to his delight.
Nathan Cleary, James Fisher-Harris, Clint Gutherson, Kenneath Bromwich, Connor Watson, Jack Wighton, Jarrod Croker, Angus Crichton, Alex Twal, Brian Kelly, Joel Thompson, Jamayne Isaako, Jason Saab, Lachlann Burr, Lachlann Fitzgibbon, Chad Townsend, Gavin Cooper
I actually don’t quite know what to make of this side, but I think he did pretty well during the middle rounds of the draft, but Connor Watson as your starting hooker is a bit risky. Other than that his spine is solid and he’s got some decent base in his forwards. Lachlann Fitzgibbon and Gavin Cooper were also good value picks.
Kalyn Ponga, David Klemmer, Latrell Mitchell, Nathan Brown, Adam Reynolds, Victor Radley, Junior Paulo, Dale Finucane, Reuben Garrick, Felise Kaufusi, Jesse Ramien, George Williams, Corey Oates, Agnatius Paasi, Mason Lino, Corey Thompson, Danny Levi
One of my mates who I’ve been drafting with for years was only half paying attention in this mock draft and he did well, but I think it was too early to jump on Latrell Mitchell in the third round, and he missed out on better options at hooker and five-eighth. But his CTW is pretty stacked, and I’ve seen teams succeed with that strategy before, although it is risky.
Cameron Smith, Ryan Matterson, John Bateman, Martin Taupau, Sio Siua Taukeiaho, Luke Brooks, Josh Jackson, Brian To’o, Braidon Burns, Jarred Warrea-Hargreaves, AJ Brimson, Isaah Yeo, Matt Moylan, Brent Naden, Brandon Smith, Alex Glenn, Channel Harris-Tevita
Another one of my mates, who drafted probably the best forward pack of the entire league, but it came at the expense of his spine. AJ Brimson and Matt Moylan as your starting 5/8 and fullback is pretty gross.
It can be difficult to tell who came out on top of the draft before the season has even started but I think its pretty easy to say that Team 2, Team 4, Team 7 and myself put together really solid sides.
CHECK OUT MORE EXPERT KFC SUPERCOACH NRL ANALYSIS
Originally published asPractice makes perfect in SuperCoach NRL Draft
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