The 2022 season of the Roosters can be summed up in three words: injuries, injuries, injuries. The Roosters performed below the lofty expectations of fans last season. They finished in sixth place, and eventually lost in the first week of the Finals to the Rabbitohs, 30-14. They had players dropping like flies, and it was difficult to watch at times.
There have been a few changes here and there for the Roosters this off-season, but they have certainly picked up some important players that should make an impact in this already star-studded line up. When it comes to the players they have gained, you really can’t go past Brandon Smith, who comes to the Rabbitohs from the Storm. As well as Smith, the Roosters have also picked up Jaxson Paulo, who joins from rival club, the Rabbitohs.
When looking at the players they have lost, four of them (Freddy Lussick, Ronald Volkman, Lachlan Lam and Daniel Suluka-Fifita) left throughout the 2022 season. Meanwhile, Adam Keighran and Kevin Naiqama are now playing in the Super League.
Ins: Corey Allan, Jaxson Paulo, Brandon Smith, Robert Toia and Jake Turpin
Outs: Renouf Atoni, Adam Keighran, Lachlan Lam, Freddy Lussick, Kevin Naiqama, Daniel Suluka-Fifita, Siosiua Taukeiaho, Sam Verrills and Ronald Volkman
Key Player: Luke Keary
The Roosters are filled to the brim with star players, but only one can have the title of key player, and that has to go to Luke Keary. Keary needs to remain fit and healthy this year, if the Roosters want to make a deep run in the Finals. He played 22 games in the 2022 season, where he managed 22 try assists and a career-high 5,709 kicking metres.
Rising Star: Sandon Smith
Sandon Smith is a highly regarded 20-year-old with the Roosters. He played in the NSW Cup last season and posted some stellar stats in the 23 games he played, which included 23 try assists along with 26 line break assists. The 2023 season will see Smith move into the squad’s top 30 roster, and if there is injury to Keary or Walker, the Roosters could take a chance on Smith for his NRL debut.
5 Key Matches To Watch
Match 1: Round 3, vs Rabbitohs, at Allianz Stadium (Fri, Mar 17, 8:05pm)
Match 2: Round 6, vs Storm, at AMMI Park (Thu, Apr 6, 7:50pm)
Match 3: Round 8, vs Dragons, at Allianz Stadium (Tue, Apr 25, 4pm)
Match 4: Round 14, vs Bulldogs, at Industree Group Stadium (Sun, Jun 4, 2pm)
Match 5: Round 20, vs Storm, at Sydney Cricket Ground (Sat, Jul 15, 7:35pm)
2023 NRL Season Expectations
Anything less than a top four finish this season would be a disappointment for the Roosters. But with even luck and limited injuries they are well placed to finish near the top of the ladder. They have added some key signings to their squad, mainly Brandon Smith. All in all, things are looking up for the Roosters, and they should finish in a higher position then they did last season.