In 2020 NRL SuperCoaches will enjoy a $200,000 boost to their salary cap - but they’ll need it with five players starting over $700,000 in 2020 compared to just one in 2019.
There are also a heap of positional changes which are going to make one position particularly tricky.
TOP 20 PRICES
The 20 most expensive players in 2020
James Tedesco $781,500
Payne Haas $728,200
Jason Taumalolo $723,400
Tom Trbojevic $714,800
Damien Cook $705,500
Cameron Smith $684,600
John Bateman $668,200
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck $659,800
Latrell Mitchell $653,100
Cameron Murray $644,900
Cameron Munster $644,400
Kalyn Ponga $634,300
Cameron McInnes $633,200
Nathan Cleary $631,500
Ryan Matterson $626,200
David Klemmer $617,400
James Fisher-Harris $615,700
Addin Fonua-Blake $612,900
Josh Papalii $605,300
David Nofoaluma $604,700
WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT CENTRE/WING (CTW)
The first thing you will notice when you start picking your 2020 squad is that picking you CTW is going to be a whole lot harder.
The following true backrowers (2RF) have lost their dual-position status:
In addition, 2019 2RF/CTW king Manu M’au has left the game altogether and gone to play in the Super League.
To make things even harder, the following fullbacks (FLB) are no longer also available at CTW:
Charnze Nicoll Klokstad
It’s not all doom and gloom though, these players newly dual-position eligible at CTW:
Alex Glenn - When things got desperate out wide at the Broncos near the end of the season Glenn was picked to fill the gap at centre. However, even when playing the full 80 minutes at 2RF Glenn is only a 45-50PPG player so he makes little appeal as a safe CTW pick.
Isaah Yeo - This little bit of serendipity does appeal though with Isaah Yeo being gifted dual 2RF/CTW eligibility after covering in the backline through the middle of the 2019 season. Yeo flirted with being legitimately SC relevant in 2018 averaging 57PPG playing big minutes in the backrow. Yeo’s injury interrupted 2019 sees him priced considerably below that career peak and should he perform well in the pre-season he’ll have some appeal as a set and forget CTW to carry you through the first 10-12 rounds.
Adam Doueihi - last season Doueihi took over as fullback at the Rabbitohs from round 17 and made a decent fist of it, he could be a decent mid-range option at CTW if he has a good pre-season.
Zac Lomax - Set to get first shot at making the fullback jersey his own at the Dragons, Lomax does not gain CTW status, he already was one, but he gains FLB and retains CTW status. If Lomax does win the job, and kicks goals, he could ease some of your pain at the position.
William Kennedy - The man-of-the-match in the Canterbury Cup NSW Grand Final, Kennedy played two games for the Sharks at fullback in 2019 and gains CTW status for 2020.
Nick Meaney - the flashy young Bulldog gains CTW designation after splitting his time between FLB and CTW in 2019 however, he has not proved to be SC relevant at either position to date.
OTHER POSITIONAL CHANGES
PLAYERS WHO HAVE LOST DUAL-POSITION STATUS
Cameron Munster - loses dual 5/8|FLB and is 5/8 only.
Kalyn Ponga - loses dual 5/8|FLB and is FLB only.
David Klemmer - loses dual FRF/2RF and is FRF only.
Josh Papalii - loses dual FRF/2RF and is FRF only.
Mitchell Moses - loses 5/8|HFB and is HFB only.
Martin Taupau - loses 2RF/FRF and is FRF only.
Valentine Holmes - When Holmes left the game to try his luck in the NFL he was a CTW/FLB. He has returned to the NRL for 2020 and will do so at FLB only.
Sio Siua Taukeiaho - loses 2RF/FRF and is FRF only.
Jayden Okunbor - loses his 2RF eligibility and is CTW only.
Dale Finucane - loses FRF/2RF and is 2RF only.
Shaun Lane - loses FRF/2RF and is 2RF only.
Jack Bird - Loses 5/8 dual and is CTW only.
Jack Wighton - loses FLB|5/8 and is 5/8 only.
Nelson Asofa-Solomona - Seemingly big enough to play two spots at once, NAS nevertheless loses dual 2RF/FRF eligibility in 2020 to be FRF only.
Benji Marshall - was HFB|5/8 in 2019 but just 5/8 in 2020.
Adam Blair - loses dual FRF/2RF and is 2RF only.
Kotoni Staggs - loses dual CTW/2RF and is CTW only.
Kerrod Holland - loses dual HOK/CTW and is CTW only.
Bryce Cartwright - The ‘Carty Party’ is only open at 2RF in 2020.
Jeremy Marshall-King - after evolving from a half who could play at hooker into an 80-minute hooker, ‘JMK’ is HKR only in 2020.
Nathaniel Roache - loses HOK/CTW to be just HOK in 2020.
Nick Cotric - the rise of Nicoll-Klokstad at the Raiders sees Cotric lose FLB to become CTW only.
Jacob Host - the popular 2019 cheapie started nine games last season all in the backrow (with a further eight games off the interchange) and loses dual FRF/2RF to be 2RF only.
Dunamis Lui - Lui loses his dual FRF/2RF status and will be FRF only.
Karl Lawton - The oft-wounded Warrior loses his HFB/HOK designation and is HOK only.
Tui Kamikamica - The Storm star of the future is a true middle forward not an edge and loses his dual FRF/2RF status to be just FRF.
Sione Katoa - He’s left Penrith to join the Bulldogs as backup hooker and leaves his dual position status behind him too, Katoa is no longer HOK/2RF and is now solely HOK.
Tom Amone - I’ll own this one, I had pushed for Amone to be dual FRF/2RF listed to start 2019 but I got it wrong, the big guy is FRF only in 2020.
Latrell Mitchell - Gains FLB so now dual CTW/FLB after making it clear that in 2020 his goal is to make the custodian jumper his own.
Cameron McInnes - gains 2RF status after playing periods in the backrow last year and with the Dragons having signed hooker Issac Luke in the off-season he looks set to play significantly more time at lock in 2020.
Anthony Milford - The Broncos were a bit of a mess through their spine in 2019 with Milford splitting his time between five-eighth and fullback. Pre-season talk is Milford will play five-eigth in 2020 but we’re throwing him dual 5/8|FLB designation anyway.
Kodi Nikorima - utility at Warriors gains 5/8 to go with HFB to become dual 5/8|HFB.
Chanel Harris-Tavita - another Warriors playmaker, ‘CHT’ gains dual HFB|5/8 status.
Brendan Elliot - Manly’s first-choice fullback Tom Trbojevic had a shocking run of injuries in 2019 and Elliot proved an able understudy in the position. He gains FLB/CTW dual status.
Jack Cogger - the Bulldogs playmaker gains 5/8 to go with his existing HFB designation.
Scott Drinkwater - after injury kept Drinkwater out of the game until round 15 last season, his hopes of retaining the fullback role at the Cowboys took a blow when the club signed Valentine Holmes. A former Australian Schoolboys half, Drinkwater is now a chance to shift to five-eighth for the club and so is dual FLB|5/8.
Jake Turpin - Turpin made eight starts in the laves for the Broncos last year and therefore starts 2020 with dual HOK/HFB status.
Darius Boyd - The Broncos skipper split his time between FLB and 5/8 in 2019 and so gets dual position (FLB|5/ in 2020. He’s just as likely to play on the wing mind you, best bet would be to not select him in your team.
Connor Watson - Such a versatile player he is hard to categorise yet needs must and so Watson changes from FLB|5/8 in 2019 to HKR|5/8 in 2020.
Kurt Mann - Another versatile Knight, Mann could legitimately be classified in three or four positions. However, with a maximum of two positions possible in the game we have placed him at FLB/CTW for 2020.
Cade Cust - was listed as a HFB in 2019, he is a 5/8 in 2020.
Moses Mbye - the versatile Tiger was HFB/FLB in 2019, in 2020 he is FLB/CTW to better reflect where he played in 2019 and likely position in 2020.
Corey Horsburgh - Big Red was listed as a 2RF in 2019 but plays through the middle and is FRF in 2020.
John Asiata - the big fella keeps his HFB eligibility but we’ve changed FRF to 2RF to better reflect his 2019 games and so is now HFB/2RF.
Murray Taulagi - Placed at FLB in 2019 but playing on the wing we have revised him to CTW in 2020.
Tommy Talau - A half as a youngster, Talau made his NRL debut last year at centre and is favoured to turn that cameo into a full-time job in 2020 as such he is now classed at CTW.