New Signings: Bryce Cartwright

I have previously discussed Cartwright’s recruitment, however this is a piece more on how the Eels will look to use him.

Cartwright’s spell at the Titans promised so much yet delivered so little. He left the Panthers on the fringe of Origin selection and finished up at the Titans as a virtual reserve grader.

Parramatta’s 2020 side lacked a genuine gamebreaker off the bench. When they needed something different, something a side like Melbourne couldn’t plan for, they didn’t have it.

Cartwright offers an air of unpredictability and creativity few others in the side possess.

While Ryan Matterson is a genuine edge threat with his size, strength and offloading ability, he doesn’t quite produce Cartwright’s miracle offloads.

Coming to the Eels on a minimum wage deal means Cartwright will be fighting for a bench spot. It’s unlikely he’ll unseat either of Shaun Lane or Matterson in the starting 13.

According to training reports, Cartwright has impressed in his defensive application and willingness to work hard. Positive news so far.

He was also training with Mark Carroll during the off-season once he’d returned to Sydney and that indicates a willingness to push himself.

Cartwright has the potential to be that x-factor and with the likes of Brad Takairangi and Andrew Davey departing the club, he has an opportunity to take advantage of what is currently an open spot on the bench.

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  • Wishful thinking Super. IMO he will start out promising much but in the end will deliver nada. I know he is basically a minimum wage gamble but I would suggest Eel fans not get their hopes up. I always thought his defence was average at best and this will again be his kryptonite.

    • The anti-vaxx stuff was mostly his partner and I believe they have separated with Bryce now living in Colyton.

      • yes they're no longer together:

        https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9174851/NRL-star-Bryce-Car...

         

        NRL star Bryce Cartwright SPLITS from his anti-vaxxer wife Shanelle
        NRL star Bryce Cartwright and his outspoken anti-vaxxer wife Shanelle have split. Cartwright's manager Allan Gainey confirmed the news, before declar…
  • What I like is the battle for a bench spot. If Cartwright dosen't apply himeself if defence which seems to have previously been his issue, he won't get a spot. Marata is a shoe in for one spot with Stone, Kafusi, Papali'i and Hipgrave as current first grade players as well as Hollis and Hughes fighting it out for 3 or possibly 2 spots on the bench depending if BA goes for a back up hooker as one of the four bench players.

    It's all up to him now with minimum cost to the Eels. I would love to see him be the player he can be.

  • We have a good mix of players competing for the bench ,I am in two minds about Lane,if he wants to keep his spot he'll have to fire up because if Catright hits the ground running I would be tempted to move him into Lanes spot .We could have good ballplayers across the park and still Papalii and maybe Roache on the bench.waiting to see if Hughes or Hollis go good because I still think we are short one more bigbody off the bench. 

    • I agree Eggy and with you too, Coach Jim. The bench selection is going to be very interesting to watch. Niukore is out Round 1 suspended, but you'd expect him to be straight back in Round 2, so that Round 1 bench may give us an idea of the pecking order. I think we actually have far more quality depth than last year. I'd be very surprised if we don't go into games without a back up 9 on the bench, and I don't think it will be Stone like last year. I think we will definitely see Roache or Lussick in the 14, if not I think BA has missed a trick. Obviously Niukore is a lock in, after that, like you guys have suggested it's a dead set traffic jam. I think Papali'i is as close to a certainty as anyone else after Niukore, he is a very good player. If Cartwright is to get a spot, then there's some handy blokes going to be running around in Canterbury Cup pressing their claims.

      • I'm going to write something on the rest of our signings, but I will say that I think Roache is a fair option off the bench given he spent time at the Warriors in the halves in lower grades. He's also a fairly creative player and a decently solid body to fill the middle of the field.

        • If Roache can stay injury free he will be our best signing in the off season, he's easily a first grader in talent it's just his body that has let him down.  A fully fit Roache could be an excellent foil for Mahoney.

          • Mahoney could be a good foil for a fully fit Roache.

            • Atm Roache is not listed in top 30 FG players so you could be blowing hot air up your own knickers for now.

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