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2022 - First - Last. Or somewhere in between.

Dragon David

Bench
Messages
3,738
Getting closer to round one...

Covid screwed us more than other team last year so it owes us one this year; hopefully to work in our favour with no BBQs for starters.

Obviously we've had a mixture of good and arguably very poor recruitment over the last couple years. Might be a bit too much weight bearing on the shoulders of the young backs who we are all excited to see but overall I can't see those young zealous types going any worse than last year. Just as curious to see how the forwards go. They are the lynch pin to success we've been so devoid of recently.

There's at least 8-10 clubs comprised of clearly better balanced squads, already stronger or who have recruited/retained better than us. I can't see finals for us but then again I have to admit there's enough of the unknown with this odd squad to maybe give us a pleasant surprise. Feels more like wishful thinking though.

No activity for 2023 at all yet so you got to wonder what's with the management and aspirations thereof at this joint.
Good points covered bigred.
 

BBTB

Juniors
Messages
808
I thought at 5-1 we were a bargain for the top8, enough that I splashed the cash.

lots of roster changes, but considering key positions and coach remain, I don’t think it will upset the game plan. Good depth which could be critical should suspensions or covid isolation hit us. Some older players with hopefully a point to prove, same for the youth.

Still all that adds up to some unpredictability, I believe top 4 is possible, as is bottom 4, I predict 6th.
I'm hoping 6th,but any top 8 spot will do.....I also splashed some cash, on top 8 at 5-1.
 

Dragonslayer

First Grade
Messages
7,295
Where we finish the season will ultimately be determined by a number of factors, like:

Who will pop -
Who will drop -
Adapting to rule changes -
Injuries -
Suspensions -
Game plans -
COVID -
Form and depth -

Recruitmemt is just a part of the process of whether a team improves. You all know the adage "A star team will always beat a team of stars", this applies to the Dogs imo. Yes, they will improve, heck they won 3 games last year, can they win a further 7 (based on Titans finishing 8th last year) against other teams that also will improve? Getting that team to gel and play team football will be a massive task imo, too many egos.

If I uad to make a prediction, I would put us anywhere between 6th and 10th. We will improve, the boil on our butt has been lanced.
 

Jim Dragons

Juniors
Messages
11
I think were are a chance of the 8... but we will be over achieving to get there.

4 x LOCKS from last years top 8 are:
East (improve - with injuries); Souths (remain on back of JD can coach); Penrith (less of a squad - but likely stick); Storm (just don't seem to fail - but some day they will)
2 x MAYBEs: Manly (a mystery based on their success last year was really their young forwards - do they do it again); Eels (how much does the leaving players affect team harmony this year)

4 x Bottom of The 8: Raiders (need the half to survive Ricky's coaching); Cronulla (will they listen to Fitz); Newcastle (l think Clune could be an answer... but not sure he will get a go); Dragons (on the back of Old heads and young talent)

Of the rest:
IMPROVERs: Bulldogs (can't be worse); Broncs (showed a glimpse - but they are still the team that looked so bad so often).
NO HOPEs: Tigers (not even with Mr Sheens); Warriors (another year away from home - might be too much); Titans (might be harsh but can the coach do it again); Cowboys (seem like a rabble)

I see us as status quo - but we will be stronger because of experience balanced with youth. Any of our forward rotation could have solid years (even Woods if he has taken us as a place to prove the doubters wrong). Mybe was captain material at 2 clubs and respected by team mates.

My wish before the season starts is that Moose is released and we pick up another hard working edge/centre (or that Jackson Ford realises how big he really is).

For us to make the eight we need to put all but ONE of the following behind us: Canb/Cron/Newc/Bull/Broncs/Titans and of course West/NQ/NZ. Of those I fear Canberra and Cronulla may have better seasons than us. I hope l am wrong.
 

redv13

Juniors
Messages
2,296
I can see Covid shredding games left right and centre with players dropping out game day etc. Depth we definitely have so fingers crossed but geez it’s a ballsy move putting $$$ on when things change from week to week let alone waiting till September for the semis to roll around. Anyway, go you dragons, let’s rip in for 2022
 

Illusion

Juniors
Messages
1,048
Hooks 2nd year , Sloan , Amone , Sullivan , a couple of new forwards , we were going ok early on last year ( as they normally do ) until the wheels fell off ....... So if no more BBQ"s Im thinking 8 maybe 7th , if not it's another waste of a year and coach .......
 

BBTB

Juniors
Messages
808
Where we finish the season will ultimately be determined by a number of factors, like:

Who will pop -
Who will drop -
Adapting to rule changes -
Injuries -
Suspensions -
Game plans -
COVID -
Form and depth -

Recruitmemt is just a part of the process of whether a team improves. You all know the adage "A star team will always beat a team of stars", this applies to the Dogs imo. Yes, they will improve, heck they won 3 games last year, can they win a further 7 (based on Titans finishing 8th last year) against other teams that also will improve? Getting that team to gel and play team football will be a massive task imo, too many egos.

If I uad to make a prediction, I would put us anywhere between 6th and 10th. We will improve, the boil on our butt has been lanced.
Yes, and Andrew Gordon was squeezed out.....
 

Hills Dragon

Juniors
Messages
121
I think the side showed a lot of promise in 2021, despite consistently playing the worst 5/8 in the NRL, a woefully inconsistent fullback, a massive number of suspensions, injuries, distractions, and De Belin only coming into the squad well into the season and without having trained with the squad. I think we have a lot more depth this year and some outstanding prospects getting consistent game time. If players like Ravalawa, Lomax, Hunt, De Belin and other established players can stay on the park and get a roll-on I think it will be a well-balanced team that could make a good dent in the top 8.
 

Pro Dragons

Juniors
Messages
383
I think our depth is much better than last year, which makes more competition for positions and dives better coverage for injuries. On the field and discussing up coming games we don‘t get much podcast or media coverage which may help us fly under the radar. I’m predicting 5th to 8th position.
 

mickeylane

Bench
Messages
4,451
Depth will be everything this year due to COVID interruptions and the usual injuries.... the clubs w the most quality depth will prosper..Dragons have quality depth this year and will finish 7th or 8th...we have added some quality experience and size..
 

mickeylane

Bench
Messages
4,451
I think we will finish top 8, for those that are predicting top 8 as well who do you have below us? That’s what I struggle with. I can only name, bulldogs, broncos, cowboys, tigers, warriors, knights, canberra. Maybes: south’s, parra, sharks, titans
Top 8 in 2022
Roosters
Penrith
Souths
Storm
Parra
Sharks
Manly
Dragons
 

kit66

Bench
Messages
2,607
I think we could be a real surprise package once again this year. I look at what we managed to achieve last year with the cattle we had - we were in the 8 until round 19 - and I look at the areas we need to and can improve on from 2021 and there's a lot of reasons to be optimistic.
We played all of 2021 with only one top line prop in the side and guys like Beale, Williame, Norman, Ramsey and Alvarro and others who would have had buckleys of making other teams first grade squads. We were soft up the middle and softer out wide. We had a weak spine by any measure but were contenders for a fair chunk of the season.

Our biggest improvement this year will be our new look pack and the better defence that comes with it. Woods, Molo, Su'a and Burgess are all not just handy defenders but big bodies which is great for slowing down the opposition play the ball. The same in attack, big bodies tend to make more metres and draw more defenders. It's what we've been missing for years. Hunt and the kids will revel in the extra space and time a big pack provides.
Another crucial area we've improved is our depth, that will afford us the strongest bench we've had in years, better even than 2018. Burgess, Lawrie, McGuire, Kerr, Bird, Burns, Ford or Mbye to provide size and experience off the bench and no more situations like back up halves or centres coming on and playing lock.

1- 6 will provide a lot of question marks and make or break decisions. I'd say 3, 4, 5, - Suli, Zac, Rava aren't a problem but 1, 2, 6 are where our fortunes for 2022 lay. We've got 6 young'ns to fight it out for those 3 spots plus M'bye and I honestly think most of the kids are ready and capable of stepping up and it won't be a problem, quite the opposite.

My only misgivings are the loss of Dufty and the attack and points he gave us, we'll miss that despite what anyone thinks of his percieved shortcomings. Where will our points come from ? Big question mark.
The other thing is Dragonball. Our ability to slip back into bad habits, butter fingers, poor discipline and keeping the judiciary busy. It's cultural, it's embedded but hopefully Hook & Co can build on their good work and weed that shit out. Time for a bit of self-belief and a winning culture.

I'd say top 8 for sure and only something like Covid and / or some homegrown stupidity once again can stop us, or World War III.

Top 6.
 

Spazer

Juniors
Messages
341
I think our attack across the park will be better this time. We have more strike in the edges with Sua, Burns, and also a more confident Bird. Having Suli replace Beale is a big plus. Lomax, Rav and Hunt are good attacking weapons and just need to stay on the park. Plus the young guns too, but that goes without saying.

My biggest concern is defence. We lose numbers far too often, especially around the ruck. I'm hoping the improved middle fixes this otherwise we will be chasing points again.
 

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