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NRL star Jack Bird

The biggest dud at your NRL club in 2018

Brisbane Broncos: Jack Bird

Overweight, overly injured and over-hyped. The blue-chip recruit from Cronulla has played just a handful of games and won't be sighted again until next season.

Canberra Raiders: Jack Wighton

Getting punchy in the preseason cost the rising utility dearly, with the NRL coming down hard with a 10 match suspension. Canberra has cried foul at the penalty, but it was Wighton's fists that cost him his spot - not the NRL's Integrity Unit.

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs: Keiran Foran

Keiran Foran has disappointed

Keiran Foran has barely played at all this season for the Bulldogs, like Jack Bird at the Broncos

Oh boy, the Doggies were really sold a lemon here. Foran arrived as the saviour in the halves, but his ongoing injuries have rendered him practically useless - when he can even take the field. Foran's decline is well known now, so good luck shipping him off to another club. Medical retirement seems like the only path the Dogs have with Foran.

Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks: Matt Moylan

Another blue-chip recruit who has been noticeably quiet this season. Then, when he lines up against his former side in Penrith, he explodes to life. Where was that passion before? Not good enough for a man once touted for a long representative career.

Gold Coast Titans: Bryce Cartwright

For a club that has had Leilani Latu, Kane Elgey and Konrad Hurrell all running around in reserve grade at different points of the season, you don't need to look far to find a dud. But Bryce Cartwright has done approximately nothing and has gone from a rising star of the NRL to being unable to find a home for 2019. A sensational fall from grace.

Manly Warringah Sea Eagles: Jackson Hastings

Who knows what the full story is here. Hastings apparently is not well liked by his teammates. His teammates say otherwise. Hastings punches on with Daly Cherry-Evans. DCE says they are still mates. Whatever the real truth is, Hastings was frozen out of any opportunity at the Sea Eagles and will now likely head to England to try and revive his career.

Melbourne Storm: Sam Kasiano

Craig Bellamy is well known for turning middle-of-the-road players. It was widely expected he would do the same with Dogzilla. Kasiano shed about 200kg in the off-season and looked ready to rip the NRL apart. But constant injuries have nullified his impact.

Newcastle Knights: Dylan Phythian

You think after Jarrod Mullen that players in the Hunter would lay off the gear. Not promising utility Dylan Phythian, who was sacked after failing two doping tests under the NRL’s illicit drugs policy.

New Zealand Warriors: Blake Ayshford

A mainstay in the Warriors outfit for the past two seasons, Ayshford has been dumped to reserve grade in 2018. Despite playing 43 games for the Warriors in 2016 and 2017 he doesn't look likely to return, either. Not unless there are some seismic injuries to their backline.

North Queensland Cowboys: Jordan McLean

Like Jack Bird, Jordan McLean has not done much in 2018

Jordan McLean barely fired a shot for the Cowboys before getting injured

A common theme is that players who leave the Storm are never as good at their new clubs. Mclean never really got the chance to show otherwise, playing a cluster of games before a foot injury cost him his season.

Parramatta Eels: Kane Evans

The hulking prop from the Roosters was supposed to be the grunt the Eels needed. Instead, he has played just four games all season and has only averaged 49.2 metres.

Penrith Panthers: Sam McKendry

Hard to find a dud in this outfit. Injuries and Origin representation have meant the young players and reserve graders have all had to have a crack. Most of them have stood up admirably. Sam McKendry gets the nod purely because the poor bloke did his ACL in March and hasn't been sighted since.

South Sydney Rabbitohs: Robbie Farah

Perhaps unfair on Robbie, but he was always going to struggle to crack this Rabbitohs side - especially given the form of Damian Cook. He was trucked off back to Wests, which was probably the right result for all parties.

St. George Illawarra Dragons: Darren Nicholls

There was a lot of hoopla around the debut of half Darren Nicholls for the Dragons. He was the oldest playmaker to make his mark on the NRL, aged 29. His one match consisted of 0 tries, 0 try assists, 0 forced dropouts, 3 running metres and 15 tackles. He might be waiting a while for his second crack.

Sydney Roosters: Jake Friend

The veteran hooker has loyalty on his side, but the numbers show a clear decline. In 2018 Friend has only 3 try assists, 4 offloads and only averages 23.8 metres running the ball. His tackle count is still high, but with young gun Victor Radley breathing down his neck, Friend could be on the way out.

Wests Tigers: Tui Lolohea

The Tigers had to fend off North Queensland to lure Lolohea to their club from the Warriors last season, but he hasn't done much since. Lolohea had enormous promise but his demands for the fullback jersey let to mixed performances at best. He is now destined for the English Super League.

About the Author Josh Alston

Josh Alston is a hack with over 12 years industry experience, covering sport across all codes for newspapers and online agencies. Known to frequent grade matches because of their cheap tinnies. Eventually graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism and a Masters in sitting on the hill when the local cricket side was playing. Softball premiership winner, rugby league legend in Year 10 and no stranger to Doomben Racecourse.

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