The Cumberland Throw

TCT Consensus Power Rankings – Round 4


The Easter weekend of footy has come and gone along with some of the best and worst footy seen in a while. The Broncos and Cowboys played out a match fitting of both their standings in the TCT Power Rankings and their titles as 2015 grand finalists while the Titans, Sea Eagles, Dragons and Eels all got by with tight wins. The Bulldogs and Warriors blew away the Rabbitohs and Knights respectively and the Sharks upset the Storm. See how it all plays out in the Consensus Power Rankings and have your say in the comments!


Skinned Rabbits – SixtiesboyFollowing their tumultuous loss to the Bulldogs on Good Friday, the Bunnies dropped outside the Top 8 of myself and DK Eel but Sixtiesboy was scathing in his weighting of their form, ranking them at 14th!

Standard Standard Deviation – All Rankers: For the second week running the Titans ended up with a standard deviation score of 1.14 even as they climbed from 10th spot to 7th. DK Eels rates the Titans the highest out of The Cumberland Throw boys, slotting them into 6th in his rankings while Miatch has them placed lowest at 9th.

Down, Down Cronulla – DK Eel: DK was not overly impressed with the Monday night victory for the Sharks as they fall to 11th in his rankings. Interestingly, the Sharks achieved a near consensus ranking of 6th among the remainder of the rankers which sees them rise two spots as a result. As with Sixtiesboy’s view on the Bunnies, these difference in opinions are a part of the charm of the consensus rankings!


See how the crew at TCT individually ranked the results from Round 3 as well as some of the maths behind the rankings!


1 (+3)


The 2015 Grand Final rematch dialed it all the way past ’11’ and delivered a modern day classic to a captivated audience across the country. In an almost too-perfect-to-be-true result, the Broncos reversed the scoreline of their 20-21 grand final loss to beat the reigning premiers 21-20 in golden point. I have waxed lyrical about Anthony Milford in the previous editions of the Consensus Power Rankings but he is truly the central figure for the Broncos. Defences simply can not sleep on this man and even when they are awake he only needs a sliver of space to make some sort of splash play. He is in ridiculous form. Co-starring with Milford this week was James Roberts, who finally broke free of whatever shackles had been restraining him at the Broncos, as he terrorised the tiring defensive line of the Cowboys in the second half. The Broncos are still very conservative in their shot calling, as displayed by their decision to take not one but four penalty shots at goal but on the back of their defence and the individual brilliance of Milford it looks to be a winning formula.

2 (+1)

Parramatta_Eels_logo.svg Dear lord it was not pretty but the 2016 Brad Arthur Revenge Tour rolls on as the Eels got the Easter chocolates over the Wests-Tigers and in doing so put the kibosh on some modern day hoodoos for the Blue and Gold. The gritty 8-0 win was the Eels’ first ever triumph in the Easter Monday blockbuster between the two Western Sydney franchises and it also marked two consecutive wins at a venue that has been a graveyard for Parramatta since the historic run to the Grand Final in 2009. There is still a world of improvement to be had within this team with the ball in hand, which is equal parts frustrating and exciting, but the transformation in defence has been nothing short of phenomenal as the Eels now lead the competition in points conceded with a paltry 39 in the ‘Against’ column. The victory did come at some cost though with injury clouds lingering over Tim Mannah (shoulder) and Danny Wicks (eye socket) while Manu Ma’u (dangerous contact) once again finds himself in the firing line of the judiciary. All this coupled with a short turnaround against the Panthers makes Sunday something of a trap game…which I imagine is a factor that has already been identified by Brad Arthur.


The Cowboys drop two spots on the back of the narrowest of losses in a modern day epic. Tough call. If anything it is the belated confirmation that the Eels are contenders in 2016 kicking into action in the rankings two weeks after they defeated the Cowboys. The Grand Final rematch lived up to and surpassed its pre-game billing. Jason Taumalolo turned in a dominant effort for the Cowboys and laid a fantastic platform for Thurston, Morgan and Coote to weave their magic. Despite ending up as the losers, the Cowboys had their chances to win the game but were denied on repeated occasions by ‘The Bunker’ in contentious circumstances. The drama of the finish coupled with the quality of the general play set up a sensational rematch in Round 11.

4 (+3)

Bulldogs-Logo-Header The Bulldogs rebounded from a comprehensive loss to the Eels in Round 3 by drubbing the hapless Rabbitohs in emphatic fashion. The 42-12 shellacking could have been considerably uglier as well given that the Dogs lead 32-0 at half time but ended up lapsing into complacency in the second half. The Canterbury forward pack ran riot throughout the game and the one-sided dominance of the ruck was reflected across the other facets of the game with Mbye and Reynolds given all the space and time they needed to work over the Bunnies. They did little to dispel the thought that restricting them in the ruck allows you to strangle their halves out of the game but when your pack can be that dominant it is hardly the worst game plan!

5 (-3)

storm Melboune were the victims of a good, old-fashioned ambush as the Sharks pulled a fast one on them at the newly dubbed Southern Cross Stadium. The 14-6 loss was a great deal closer than it should have been with only the alligator hands of Valentine Holmes keeping the scoreline from blowing out. The defeat sees the Storm tumble three spots down the rankings and they also lose their outright lead in the competition with the Broncos, Cowboys, Titans and Eels all joining them on 6 points.

6 (+2)

Last week Cronulla gifted the win-less Sea-Eagles their maiden victory of the season and now they stun the previously undefeated Melbourne Storm. What is doing there? The Cronulla forward pack aimed up big time against the visitors and didn’t give Cameron Smith any time to work his dark voodoo ruck magic on the referees, which in turn opened up plenty of their own attacking opportunities. Chad Townsend and Ben Barba were exceptionally dangerous running the ball all night and as mentioned just above – it was only the alligator hands of Holmes that prevented the Sharks from running up an impressive score.

7 (+3)



The Little Team That Could. The Titans have surpassed all expectations to nab a share of the competition lead after a month of footy. Their come-from-behind win against the Raiders featured some of the softest tries you will ever see, including a memorable try from a penalty tap for ex-Raider David Shillington, but you can not fault the effort they are displaying. Ryan James was immense for the Titans from the bench while John Olive made the most of his return to the team as he scored the contentious match winner in the final minutes of the game.

8 (-2)


The Raiders clung onto 6th spot on the power rankings last week despite a second half capitulation to the lowly Knights that led to a draw. They have finally relinquished the position after three straight weeks after falling victims to the plucky Titans. Second half fades are becoming a worrying trend for Ricky’s Raiders, especially given the fact they have hardly faced any of the highly geared attacking teams to date. Much like the Rabbitohs it could be a case of Strength of Schedule disguising the relative strength of a team. This week should go some way towards setting the record straight. They welcome both Blake Austin and Aidan Sezer back from the injury ward as they make the trip to ANZ Stadium to take on the Bulldogs.

9 (-4)

rabbitohs The Rabbitohs were missing their talismanic forward Sam Burgess as they took on the Bulldogs and boy did it show. The Bunnies were never in the Good Friday fixture and coach Michael Maguire will be left trying to salvage something out of the disastrous outing. They deservedly plummet down the power rankings as a result but can stem the bleeding this Friday when they meet the Sea-Eagles. Sam and Thomas Burgess are massive inclusions for South-Sydney and might be enough to halt the losing streak.

10 (+1)



The Tigers manage to climb one spot in spite of their loss to Parramatta on Monday thanks to Penrith slipping up against the Dragons. The narrow loss to one of the form teams in the competition is an encouraging result for the drama-ridden club. James Tedesco was well contained by the Eels and still proved to be a constant menace which speaks volumes towards the talent that he possesses. Eels custodian Michael Gordon did raise a fair point after the match when he noted to Triple M that the Tigers’ attack was largely simple to read based on the positioning of Tedesco so if Jason Taylor can find ways to capitalise on the threat of Teddy and get Farah, Brooks and Moses generating plays outside of their talented fullback they will likely trouble some of the better teams in the NRL.

11 (+1)


Who would have thought that playing a representative fullback in his native position would yield positive results? Now that the Mann experiment has gone the way of the dinosaurs the Dragons look to be a much improved football side. Much like the match between the Tigers and Eels, the Dragon/Panthers fixture was not great viewing but the joint-venture made it two wins on the trot as they ground out the Panthers in the dying minutes. Josh Dugan fell just shy of 200 running metres but sealing the game with a try in the 76th minute will likely sooth the sting of that wound!

12 (-3)

This_is_a_logo_for_Penrith_Panthers Penrith are making a habit of turning their games into a messy scrap. They stunned the Broncos in Round 2 but have otherwise fallen to the Raiders, Bulldogs and Dragons in close but ugly affairs. Although it wasn’t as heart breaking as the after-the-siren loss to the Dogs in Round 3, seeing the lead slip through your fingers due to a Josh Dugan strike in the 76th minute of the game would hurt. They welcome back Matt Moylan as they build towards their Sunday afternoon derby with our boys. Given the brutal start to the season fostered upon the Eels by the draw in tandem with concerns over several senior forwards, this looms as a very serious danger game

13 (+2)

Did the Warriors find their mojo? The Cumberland Throw remain unconvinced. After heading into the sheds at half time locked at 12-all with the Newcastle Knights, the Warriors flicked a switch in the second stanza and ran away 40-18 victors. Ben Matulino led the way for the Warriors while Roger Tuivasa-Sheck continues to make positive steps back towards his best form but they will need to show they can slug it out with a half-way decent team before can come into serious consideration for climbing the power rankings.

14 (-1)

MWSE_2016_logo_website_white_text Manly won the first leg of the holiday Basement Bowl in controversial circumstances, through no fault of their own mind you but still fall one spot in the rankings with the Warriors proving to be slightly more compelling in Round 4. Jamie Buhrer was no sooner back in first-grade than he was out as a broken hand puts him back in the injury ward for 4-6 weeks while Daly Cherry-Evans will join him there for a month with a high ankle sprain. After putting all their Easter Eggs in the DCE Basket it will be interesting to see how they fare with the Koroisau/Walker combination in the halves. The two ugly wins give them some breathing space over the Knights and Roosters but they still have a long way to go.

15 (-1)

knights Joined the Roosters as the losers in the Easter Basement Bowl. Newcastle kept the game close to half time before getting blown off the park in the second half. Everyone knows they are starting a tough rebuilding process so blow out scores are to be expected but they are never fun to be on the receiving end of one. Not a single forward came close to running for 100m and the same can be said for every back bar Nathan Ross. Brutal stuff.

16 (=)

roosters Shaun Kenny-Dowall did not deserve to be on a losing team on Saturday night. He turned in a rare effort in a pretty bog ordinary game and was by some margin the best player on the field. Siosiua Taukeiaho is perhaps the only other Rooster that can hold his head up high along with SKD after four dismal rounds of footy for the Roosters. They desperately need Waerea-Hargraves and Cordner back to bolster their pack but it may just be that deeper issues have taken root inside the team with the mass exodus of core players in the pre-season.
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3 thoughts on “TCT Consensus Power Rankings – Round 4

  1. sixties

    Indeed I rate Souths quite low in my power rankings. Their victories were racked up over teams that are sadly out of form. Their last two losses have been very poor. The amazing thing is that the injuries to key Manly players will likely hand them a victory this week. If they can’t defeat a depleted Manly team, put a line through the Bunnies for this year.

  2. DK Eel

    I thought Cronulla got away with a scrappy kind of win against a Melbourne outfit that was just having an off night. The Titans, well I slotted them at 6th, which was “last placed” in my top teams, purely based on their “never give up” attitude. While I’m not convinced (yet) if they have the strike power across the board (I think they’re lacking a class half back to steer them around) they’re on equal top spot on points, so I couldn’t ignore that.

    But it’s early days in the season. Our defence has been rock solid these last few weeks, once the attack clicks, I think it’ll be hard to NOT rank Parra in the top four in the power rankings.

    1. Anonymous

      Surely Cronulla have had only one “off” game themselves? Their other loss against the Cowboys up in Townsville was full of merit.

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