5 Lessons Learned – NRL Round 8

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Yes it’s Sunday night but that won’t stop this week’s edition of 5 Lessons Learned coming out early.

It was another big weekend for the favourites in the NRL and maybe, just maybe a little bit of magic in the air.

There was a lot to take away from this weekend so sit back and see what the numbers have to say.

1 – Overs v Unders

Thursday’s Rabbitohs-Broncos clash had plenty of drama surrounding it and that was just in the two coaches boxes.

From a punting perspective though, it was the side that couldn’t seem to hit the over against the side that very rarely failed to score points.

In the Broncos first seven games this season, the total points line had only hit the over twice, and falling short by half a point on a few occasions.

For the Rabbitohs, it was the opposite story, clearing the total five times in their opening seven games.

In this instance, it was the Rabbitohs attack that won out as they scored a late try to give them a sixth over on the season.

2 – Storm Sunk

Few teams can boast a good record against the Storm under Craig Bellamy but the Sharks once again continued to hold their own in that matchup.

Fresh off a big loss to the Broncos, the Sharks picked up another home win, stunning the Storm who may very well have been paying the price for a series of draining games as highlighted last week.

Don’t overreact to the Storm’s loss here, it happens, these sides had split their last six meetings before this game and just seem to matchup well for the Sharks to give them a hard time.

3 – Roosters by Double Digits Again

The Roosters are definitely the hottest team in the competition right now, since going down to the Rabbitohs in Round 1, they have reeled off seven straight wins.

Not impressed yet?

How about four of their last five have been by double digit margins including this weekend’s demolition of the Tigers.

It’s all well and good to beat the sides you are expected to but to put up your highest score of the season is something worth applauding, even if through gritted teeth.

With such good form don’t be at all surprised if the Roosters lines continue to grow, until someone stops them that is.

4 – Over the Favourites?

It was a weekend where two plays stood out, back the favourite and back the overs.

With the Eels finishing off the Dragons after receiving a bit of a scare early, it closed out a 6-2 record head to head and against the spread for the favourites backing up from last weekend going 7-1 on the scoreboard and 6-2 with the handicap.

What was surprising with that record is the fact that the biggest favourite of the weekend, the Roosters, managed to cover their line of -12.5

After a brutal run of just eight covers in three weeks, the favourites are taking control now as the market adjusts to who is good and who is struggling.

So far this season the favourites have gone 36-28 against the spread so they’d give you a decent profit if you had backed them every week and were able to ride out a rough April.

There were also plenty of points with just two games going under, including the Sharks-Storm contest which only just went under it’s total by half a point.

5 – Magic Round Incoming

You have to give it to the NRL, their Magic Round concept is certainly different to what we’re used to seeing, but there’s a lot of questions about how it will play out.

For starters, you can throw out the “home/away” records for next week, save for the Broncos of course.

As the weekend goes on, the Suncorp surface may start to show the wear of having eight NRL games in four days on it and it could make free flowing games very difficult to play in which might limit the points on offer.