With the help of the Fox Sports Lab, we found out how difficult it is to draw each team.
The strength of the schedule is based on the Lab Predictor ratings for each team, which also take into account how the teams have performed in the past at planned locations.
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Great news Knights fans. They play the bottom eight teams and the second most bottom four teams. Newcastle also have just five games against their four best opponents last year. The itinerary is pretty normal, but there will be a couple of long trips early with games in the Gold Coast and New Zealand scheduled for the first five rounds. But with the Bulldogs, Warriors, Tigers, Dragons and Titans at the start of the season, Newcastle have a serious chance at 5-0. The Knights will only play twice against the other top 8 teams Roosters and Sharks in the next season.
The Cowboys only have five games against the bottom four teams, but that is offset by as many against the top four teams. Her eleven games against the top eight last year are also the second smallest, while her 13 against the eighth bottom are the second most. The toughest time for the Cowboys is between rounds 16 and 19, when they face the Knights, Rabbitohs, Roosters and Storm. The Roosters, Sharks, and Knights are the only top 8 teams they’ll play against twice.
Canberra’s rating would be heavily influenced by their strong track record in planned venues as the quality of the opposition they face is quite strong. With their 12 games against the top 8 teams, they rank third along with a number of other teams. Seven versus top 4 teams is also the second most common. You have 12 games with the eighth from last season, but only five against the four worst. Travel-wise Raiders fans will be happy to hear that they only have a few routes that they won’t be in the capital for two weeks.
Cronulla has a lot to offer with 13 (second most) and seven (second most) games against the bottom eight and four teams. The eleven (second longest) and six (second longest) encounters with the top 8 and 4 teams are also favorable. A three-game stretch against Penrith, Melbourne and South Sydney from round nine to eleven will not be fun. Games in Townsville, Brisbane and Canberra will also not take place within four weeks.
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The Panthers will like their seven game (second most common) odds against the bottom four teams. You play against a variety of top 8 teams twice, including all three top 4 teams from last season. This is the price tag for the success of this Panthers squad, which usually ended up in the bottom half of the eight. There aren’t really any real nightmare tracks for Penrith, but they will have two grudge games to end the season against the Tigers and Eels, both of which must be highly competitive.
Melbourne are another team that would have benefited from a strong record in the past at scheduled venues where they have played previously. Their five games against the bottom four teams are the second smallest. They also have 13 games in which their opponents finished in the top eight – the second most of any other team in the league. It’s a tough opening for Melbourne with Souths, Parramatta and Penrith.
Manly has the second most games in the league against the bottom eight teams and the second smallest against the top four opponents. However, their five games against the bottom four teams are the second smallest. The white-tailed eagles will also be away from home in rounds five to nine. After three games between Rounds 21 and 23 against Melbourne, Parramatta and Canberra, they are prepared for the final if they make it that far.
With just five games against the top four teams (least common) and seven against the top four teams (second most), the draw was pretty friendly for the Dragons. You also avoid doubles against the Panthers and Storm – last year’s two big finalists – and only play once against each side. It’s not a fun end of the year, however, with the Rabbitohs (twice), Raiders, Panthers and Roosters in the final six rounds.
A big boost for the Tigers is the fact that they don’t play the storm or the roosters twice. They end up pretty much in the middle when it comes to the quality of the opposition they play. Your biggest advantage would be seven games (second highest) against the bottom four teams. It’s a difficult opening for Michael Maguire’s men to face the Raiders, Roosters, Knights and Eels. In the middle of the year you can expect four games against Penrith, Parramatta, Melbourne and South Sydney.
Only play against five of the four best teams – fewest together with four other teams who receive the same bonus from the draw. She places the rest of her numbers pretty much right in the middle. Not having to play the Roosters and Panthers twice is a huge advantage.
Another player who has only scored five games against the top four teams. Eight meetings with the bottom four pages is almost the largest offering. There aren’t really tough games until the end of the season, when they face the Rabbitohs, Storm and Knights before facing the Warriors, but we all know how Newcastle fared in their last game with the Gold Coast. The Titans don’t play the Panthers or Roosters twice as a bonus to their chances of a Top 8 result.
A tough appearance for the Roosters, who play Storm, Rabbitohs, Panthers, Eels, Knights and Raiders twice. Trent Robinson’s men are having a hard time getting home with Parramatta, Penrith, South Sydney and Canberra mixed with meetings with the less acclaimed Broncos and Dragons. Three of their last four games are also away with two interstate games.
A brutal reality for Souths is the fact that they face each and every team in the top four twice. This is offset by the fact that they have 13 games against the bottom eight teams (second most common). . Rounds eight through twelve will have a big say in their season as they face the Raiders, Storm, Sharks, Panthers and Eels during a difficult time.
The eels also make a tough appearance with the Panthers, Storm, Raiders, Roosters, and Rabbitohs, all of whom appear twice on their calendar. Parramatta’s toughest stretch of the game takes place between rounds 19 and 21, with the Raiders, Roosters and Rabbitohs on the agenda.
It will always be a tough question for the Bulldogs considering how deep they landed on the ladder last week. However, they received little help with 13 games against the top 8 teams (second most) and 11 against the bottom 8 teams (second from bottom). . The Knights, Panthers, Rabbitohs, and Storm are all in the first five rounds for the Bulldogs.
Look away, Broncos fans, this is not nice. 15 games against top 8 teams and eight against top 4 teams are the most in the league. As expected, your nine against the bottom eight competitors are the fewest. Brisbane is getting eight prime time slots on Friday nights to ease the pain. Rounds four to seven will be particularly difficult with Storm, Rabbitohs, Panthers and Eels and only one at home (Penrith). .
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National Rugby League, South Sydney Rabbitohs, Sydney Roosters, Melbourne Storm, Sea Eagles by Manly Warringah, Wests Tigers, 2021, Brisbane Broncos, Newcastle Knights, Penrith Panthers
LevelMagazine – AU – NRL 2021 Draw: Strength of the schedule, who plays each team twice, who has the toughest draw, analysis, Brisbane Broncos