NRL free agency period about to open

27 October 2017
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There are more than 40 past or present State of Origin and Test players are set to become available on the open market as the NRL’s 2018 silly season begins.

Under NRL rules, clubs will be able to table offers to players off-contract at the end of 2018 as soon as Wednesday November 1.

The likes of James Maloney, Michael Morgan and Boyd Cordner headline the list, that encompasses more than 60 frontline players from all 16 clubs.

While 2017 was one of the busiest years on record as player managers timed contracts to end at the same time as the increase to the salary cap, next season could still challenge a number of clubs abilities to stay under the revised cap.

North Queensland will be the most under pressure to keep their side intact, especially if Johnathan Thurston decides to play on another year in 2019.

All four members of the team’s spine are among the eight first-graders coming off contract, including Michael Morgan following his incredible run to this year’s decider.

The Cowboys did well to retain the majority of their premiership stars following their 2015 title, but next year could prove even more challenging with established club players Lachlan Coote, Jake Granville, Ethan Lowe and Justin O’Neill also off contract at the end of 2018.

Canberra will face a considerable challenge with halves Blake Austin and Aidan Sezer both being available to the open market next week, as will Josh Hodgson, Nick Cotric and Shannon Boyd.

 

NOTABLE OFF-CONTRACT NRL PLAYERS AFTER THE 2018 SEASON

Brisbane: Corey Oates, Sam Thaiday

Canberra: Blake Austin, Shannon Boyd, Nick Cotric, Josh Hodgson, Josh Papalii, Junior Paulo, Aidan Sezer, Sia Soliola

Canterbury: Greg Eastwood, Brett Morris, Josh Morris

Cronulla: Paul Gallen, Luke Lewis, James Maloney, James Segeyaro

Gold Coast: Dale Copley, Anthony Don, Kane Elgey, Jarryd Hayne

Manly: Lewis Brown, Blake Green, Brian Kelly Apisai Koroisau, Darcy Lussick, Curtis Sironen, Akuila Uate

Melbourne: Tim Glasby, Ryan Hofman, Felise Kaufusi, Billy Slater, Cameron Smith

Newcastle: Jamie Buhrer, Chris Heighington, Brock Lamb, Trent Hodkinson

North Queensland: Lachlan Coote, Jake Granville, Kane Linnett, Ethan Lowe Michael Morgan, Justin O’Neill, Johnathan Thurston, Antonio Winterstein

Parramatta: Kaysa Pritchard, Nathan Brown, Beau Scott

Penrith: Josh Mansour, Tyrone May, Peter Wallace

South Sydney: George Burgess, Sam Burgess, Thomas Burgess, Angus Crichton, Robbie Farah, John Sutton

St George Illawarra: Matt Dufty, Cameron McInnes, Jason Nightingale, Joel Thompson

Sydney Roosters: Boyd Cordner, Blake Ferguson, Jake Friend, Michael Gordon, Luke Keary, Isaac Liu

Wests Tigers: Tim Grant, Benji Marshall, Kevin Naiqama

Warriors: Issac Luke, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck

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