Despite the NRL "poster boy" curse striking again with Bulldogs fullback Ben Barba falling from grace, the NRL looks in good shape with a catchy new theme song (thank you Jessica Mauboy) and a slick TV advertisement. To mark the start of another season it is time to gaze into the crystal ball and see if we can successfully pick the teams and players we will be discussing come September.
North Queensland Cowboys
South Sydney Rabbitohs
Grand Final: North Queensland vs. Melbourne
With the big 4 of Bellamy, Smith, Cronk and Slater, the Storm are bound to be thereabouts again this year. But if North Queensland's number 7 (Thurston) and number 1 (Bowen) can stay fit and their big boppers (Scott and Tamou) keep them going forward the Cows will give the competition a mighty shake and as I see it, just get over the line for their maiden premiership.
State of Origin: Queensland 2-1
5 words: Smith, Slater, Thurston, Cronk, Inglis. Those 5 names will strike fear into Daley and co and despite having a home game taken away from them the Queenslanders will be too good again. For the 8th time in a row.
Dally M Medallist: Greg Inglis
The big Queenslander is poised to explode this year and wreak unadulterated havoc on all opposition sides with increased freedom to run, hit and destroy from the back of the park.
Big Controversy of the Year: ASADA
With ASADA yet to name anyone in their case, this story has the potential to be huge, when and if, names and charges eventually come out.
Adam Schoenmaker is a pastor in in his local church in the northern suburbs of Brisbane. Adam loves a good book, a classic album and all Queensland sporting teams.
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