NRL Futures – Brisbane Breezing Early
We’re eight games into the 2016 National Rugby League season and already it looks like another good year for the state of Queensland.
Last season, the two Queensland teams, the Brisbane Broncos and North Queensland Cowboys, swept their way through the elimination rounds to meet in the Grand Final. The title was clinched by North Queensland (17-16) in a golden point victory.
A third of the way into 2016, history stands to repeat itself. The Broncos (7-0-1, 14 pts) and Cowboys (6-0-2, 12 pts) lead the pack with third to sixth place clustered together at ten points.
The fight for the top eight – which comes with a ticket to the finals – looks set to intensify, with eighth to thirteenth place all tied at six points. As usual, we should expect the split between the haves and have-nots to come down to the final weeks of the season, and potentially be decided by point difference.
One interesting team to watch is the Sydney Roosters. After finishing both the 2014 and 2015 seasons as Minor Premiers (top of the ladder before the finals), they find themselves in last place (1-0-6, 2 pts). The season is still young and there is ample time to recover. But as much as Rooster fans would love to see that happen, the odds aren’t in their favor (as you’ll see below).
Due to the structure of the competition, no one’s Grand Final ambitions have been dashed just yet. All teams are still in contention for the top eight. So, with that in mind, here are our odds for this year’s’ Grand Final champions.
Odds to win 2016 NRL Grand Final:
Brisbane Broncos: 7/2
North Queensland Cowboys: 9/2
Cronulla Sharks: 9/1
Parramatta Eels: 11/1
Canterbury Bulldogs: 13/1
Melbourne Storm: 13/1
Manly Sea Eagles: 15/1
Penrith Panthers: 15/1
New Zealand Warriors: 17/1
Canberra Raiders: 19/1
South Sydney Rabbitohs: 19/1
Sydney Roosters: 41/1
St George/Illawarra Dragons: 81/1
Gold Coast Titans: 126/1
Wests Tigers: 126/1
Newcastle Knights: 251/1
(Photo credit: JunkByJo (flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/junkbyjo/2832904082/) [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/legalcode]. )