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NRL: Players to watch out for in 2023

The NRL season is almost upon us and it is time to take a look at the players who could really stand out in the 2023 campaign.

It is a tough job to single players out. The NRL is packed with top quality and most of the best rugby league players in the world ply their trade down under.

The list of players who could star in 2023 has the potential to be a long one. But let’s narrow it down a bit and pick out the top four.

There are players who have been there and done it already and should star again, plus those who are ready to take their game to the next level. Here are the top NRL players to keep an eye out for in 2023.

Cameron Munster (Melbourne Storm)

We may as well start with arguably the best player to grace the NRL right now. Munster has always been blessed with talent but after cleaning up his life away from the pitch he took his game to another level in 2022. It is scary to think what 2023 could look like.

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The playmaker has also put an end to all the rumours about his future by penning a new contract with the Storm. This means no distractions for the season and frees him up to play even more scintillating rugby league.

At 28, the five-eighth is at the top of his game and looks sure to light up the NRL in the season ahead. It is a big campaign for the Storm who have seen a number of key players move on.

However with Munster locked in until 2027 they are in safe hands. The Storm can be backed at 15/2 to win the 2023 Grand Final.

Latrell Mitchell (South Sydney Rabbitohs)

Mitchell had been hampered by hamstring issues but a trip to the USA sorted that out and the 25-year-old returned to play some of the best rugby of his career in 2022.

The fullback has matured into one of the best players in the NRL and if he can stay fit and keep his aggressive style in check then he is sure to be a big hit. Mitchell excites with his skill and some of the moves he pulls off on the pitch leaves everyone gobsmacked.

He helped guide the Rabbitohs to the Grand Final last season and you can count on one thing he will be determined to take them a step further in 2023.

Mitchell is another player to have signed a long-term deal and will be free to focus on his footy. That can only be a good thing for the Bunnies and their fans.

Dylan Edwards (Penrith Panthers)

It is tough to single out one player from a Panthers side that has dominated the NRL when winning the Grand Final in each of the last two seasons. They are priced at 11/4 to do it again in 2023.

They have a list of stand-out players such as Nathan Cleary, Isaah Yeo and Jarome Luai. However Edwards deserves special mention for being arguably the best fullback in the NRL. With Mitchell, Tom Trbojevic, James Tedesco etc in the competition that is some statement but Edwards has proven it.

The 27-year-old won the Clive Churchill Medal for his man-of-the-match performance in last season’s Grand Final and is set for another big year.

Currently injured and will miss the World Club Championship showdown with St Helens but the Panthers are confident he will be ready for round one of the new season.

Brandon Smith (Sydney Roosters)

The Roosters could be the main threat to the Penrith Panthers this season and they are priced at 5/1 to win the Grand Final. If they are to go all the way then Smith is sure to play a key role..

The hooker swaps the Melbourne Storm for the Roosters and looks set to thrive with more regular rugby league. He sometimes struggled to get regular minutes at the Storm but has an abundance of talent and the No.9 jersey should be his own following the departure of Sam Verrills.

The Roosters worked hard to get the 26-year-old on board and hope to get the reward. He could be the final piece in Trent Robinson’s jigsaw. Smith will need to keep his discipline and stay on the pitch but there is never a dull moment when the Kiwi ace is around.

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