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    Canberra RAIDERS
    Canberra RAIDERS

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    Canberra RAIDERS

    2016 Positional Minute Splits 



    The Raiders have managed a huge turnaround in the past two seasons and they have all the pieces in place to be a big contender in 2017 and 2018, as the only starter not contracted for the next two seasons is Jordan Rapana. The Raiders attack was frequently scintillating in 2016 with both edges proving impossible to contain at times. Their 688 points scored was 108 points higher than the next best side and was the 7th highest scoring total since the NRL went to 24 games in 2002. Furthermore all the seasons with higher scoring teams were prior to 2006 so, the Raiders had the best attack we’ve seen in a decade. They were a points scoring juggernaut. This converted to fantasy where the Raiders led the NRL in fantasy points, tries, goals, try assists, line breaks and tackle breaks, while players like Whitehead, Leilua, Hodgson, Croker and Rapana were among the top scorers at their positions. The Raiders also gave up the fewest fantasy points to their opponents and were the best side against centres, halfbacks and wingers – that’s all those missed tackles. The really interesting thing is the Raiders conceded more fantasy points to their opponents than anyone in 2015 so it is quite the reversal. That’s a lot of positivity and here’s the negativity: they won’t be as good in 2017. The sort of performance the Raiders attack put on last year simply isn’t sustainable so I expect to see a bit of regression to the mean here. That means players like Leilua, Croker and Rapana are all going to be over priced to start the season and you should take them at your peril. 


    Forecast line-up


     The back line picks itself. So does much of the forward pack. I’m going for Tapine at lock but it could easily be Bateman or Soliola or Fensom. 



    2016 Positional Minute Splits



     The Raiders got more minutes out of their starting second rowers than anybody, they only had four games all year in which the starting second rower didn’t play 80 minutes and in two of those games it was 76 and 78 minutes. If Boyd and Paulo are the starting props the prop minutes probably won’t go up much as Soliola will get most of the minutes in one stint from the bench.


    Depth Chart 



     The Raiders have lost a few of their depth contributors with Paul Vaughan, Brenko Lee and Sam Williams gone. The only depth concern is in the halves where the only cover is Lachlan Croker who is returning from an ACL injury.


    Average Fantasy Points Allowed Per Position



     The Raiders were the toughest fantasy defence around just a year after being the softest.


    Key Fantasy Changes 


     The big change will surround the locking position. Last season saw Fensom start at lock on 14 occasions, Soliola on 8 occasions and Luke Bateman on the other 2. Joseph Tapine was used exclusively as an interchange option last season but he should also be an option as he deserves more game time than he had last season.