Sydney Roosters 2017 Season in Review
The club responsible for two of the biggest recruitment coups of the off-season should be even stronger than their second-place finish in 2017 with Cooper Cronk and James Tedesco on board.
They're not totally unscathed though with not just Mitchell Pearce but a host of other stars (Aidan Guerra and Connor Watson to Newcastle for example) also departed.
It will be very much a new-look side for Trent Robinson in 2018 and while the depth may not be what it once was they have quality in every position.
NRL.com expert Jamie Soward says:
"The only question from last year is around their three-quarter line in terms of being able to stop tries. Latrell Mitchell came into the competition as a fullback. Him and Joseph Manu, they're the type of players that can win you games but I'm sure they'll be working hard this year and getting that right where they don't have to swap with Blake Ferguson and Mitchell Aubusson in and out in terms of defence, you want that consistency working together.
"You'd love to leave Mitch Aubusson at back row for the year and have guys like Matterson, Liu, Tetevano all tearing in rather than having Aubusson move out to the centres for defensive reasons.
"The Roosters are definitely one of the favourites if they can all stay healthy. They haven't got a lot of depth in their backs if they pick up an injury but that's the beauty of Mitch Aubusson and why he's so important to that club.
"I'm excited to watch Luke Keary. I think they've pretty much said to Keary 'this will be your team in two years when Cronk retires, soak it up'."
NRL.com's predicted Round 1 team:
1 James Tedesco, 2 Daniel Tupou, 3 Latrell Mitchell, 4 Joseph Manu, 5 Blake Ferguson, 6 Luke Keary, 7 Cooper Cronk, 8 Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, 9 Jake Friend, 10 Dylan Napa, 11 Boyd Cordner, 12 Mitch Aubusson, 13 Sio Siua Taukeiaho. Interchange: 14 Ryan Matterson, 15 Isaac Liu, 16 Zane Tetevano, 17 Victor Radley. Reserves: 18 Nat Butcher, 19 Eloni Vunakece, 20 Lindsay Collins, 21 Chris Smith.