Before a ball has been kicked... what are you guys judging him on this year?
Where we finish on the ladder? Our style of play? Improvement on last year?
Personally I think where we're going to go with our coaching from 2023 onwards needs to be made over the back end of this season. I've wanted him gone for ages as I think winning big games in this comp comes down to more than 'owning your effort areas' and 'fast starts'. These things might help you beat The Dogs or Dragons in April or May... but they arent going to be what decides games against the roosters, panthers, storm, souths etc.. I think hes extremely one dimensional and has shown for years he doesnt have the answers, or an ability to progress the careers of our young players from promising rookie to even established first grader.
That said, I think to all of us the glaring problem in 2020 was our attack. BA has to have gone into last offseason and seen our attack needs a shake up. To be fair he shouldve seen it in 2017, but it was glaring without a Semi to create trys from our own end / finish 30% chances... or without 28 try assists off of mitch moses boot (which is an outlier year for any half)... we've had nothing against the top teams for a long time. It doesnt matter if our attack is up and down at the start of the season if we are working towards an end game of being better when it counts. We cant play the same width passes followed by turning the play inside over and over and over again anymore. Thats going to be 1 thing i'd want to see out of us this year.
I also think we should judge him on how Reed and Dylan progess over the season. As mentioned BA has a horrible record of progessing the careers of our talented youngsters. Yes, I know Haze, Oregon , Dylan, Reed, Marata have all played first grade for all those that will argue that.. but i'd argue Tepai, Bevan, Ethan Parry, hell even guys like Pauli Pauli.. we didnt get much out of these guys , some of whom had great junior careers. Reed can't be the same player this year he was the last couple. Playing 80 mins as an undersized tackling machine with a good pass aint it in 2021. The top teams are rolling through the middle with a strong emphasis on play out of dummy half. Theyre attacking in behind the markers and playing in tight when the other team is struggling to hang on. We play to the edges. Dylan, we all know has great potential but he should be improving year on year . I think it's way too early to judge his progression but after another season in the top grade we'll have more idea if the team structures are helping him succeed.
Theyre the big ones for me . We need to be creating chances against top opposition and we need improvement out of our youngsters who have now played 30-50+ games. If we get that we'll have a decent season. I won't judge him on if we finish 1st or 8th if we see that. Anything else lower i'll doubt we have seen that at all.