NRL 2023: Round Five Team Of The Week

Round five had plenty of fun in the NRL this week. Massive wins, a draw and some massive upsets.

The Edge of the Crowd Rugby League team put their heads together to put together the best 13 players in this week's Team of the Week.

1. Full Back - Reece Walsh (Broncos)

The Broncos picked up a massive win to start the weekend against the Tigers at home. The mighty Broncos scored nine tries in a dominant performance from minute one to minute 80.

Reece Walsh saw plenty of action with the ball running for 183 metres from 13 runs. It was Walsh's efforts in setting up his teammates that put him into this team though after having three try assists and two linebreaks. Since coming to the Broncos, Walsh has simply gone to another level.

2. Winger - Dominic Young (Knights)

While the draw was a terrible result for the Sea Eagles, it was much better than the Knights were hoping to go into this weekend. A late 78th-minute try from Newcastle meant through 90 minutes the teams couldn't be separated.

Dominic Young was the sole man keeping the Knights in this match having scored the final four tries of the match for the Knights to equal things up. Along with the 16 points he ran for 193 metres and had four linebreaks.

3. Centre - Izack Tago (Panthers)

The biggest win of the weekend belonged to the Panthers who got up over the top of the Raiders by a massive 41 points on Friday night in Canberra. After a slightly slow start, the Panthers seem to have found the momentum that served them so well in 2021 and 2022.

Izack Tago was the best on the field for the Panthers in their massive win. He scored on two occasions while running for 123 metres. He also helped to set up three other tries while doing plenty on the defensive end laying 19 tackles.

4. Centre - Campbell Graham (Rabbitohs)

Compared to some of the other matches in this round, the 10-18 loss for the Rabbitohs was a little bit more relaxed. Only one try was scored for each team in the second half. And while it was a disappointing loss for the Bunnies it was a good test of where the team is at heading into round six.

Campbell Graham continues to find a place in the team of the week having another good all-round game. He scored the second-half try for the Bunnies while running for 126 metres. In the defensive half, he also laid 15 tackles in a solid effort.

5. Winger - Jamayne Isaako (Dolphins)

It's a comeback to Earth for the Dolphins in the last couple of weeks after a massive start to the team's NRL career. Having been sat in the top four for the first four weeks of the season the Dolphins are now getting back to their predicted finish and are sitting in seventh.

Isaako was excellent in the first three weeks that saw the Dolphins win and he continues to put up that kind of performance, even if his teammates aren't quite doing the same. He scored on one occasion while converting twice as part of a 177-metre run effort from 16 runs.

6. Five Eighth - Sam Walker (Roosters)

The weekend started with the Roosters getting over the Eels by eight points at home. The Roosters are one of the better teams in the competition and have shown that by now sitting third on the ladder having already picked up the two points from the bye.

Sam Walker successfully converted on all his kicking attempts while running for a relatively low 29 metres from six attempts. His 387 kicking metres in a close match were vital though, as was the try assist that allowed the Roosters to take the win.

7. Half Back - Ben Hunt (Dragons)

The Dragons are now making their way up the ladder after a few quiet weeks, with them now sitting 10th on the ladder. A massive 38-12 win over the Dolphins will give them plenty of confidence and momentum heading into week six.

Ben Hunt offers plenty to the Dragons across both halves of the field. He scored a try on the weekend while taking nine runs for 90 metres. He laid 15 tackles while setting up a teammate for a try. 308 kicking metres also proved vital on defence.

8. Prop - Payne Haas (Broncos)

The Broncos are now the only team in the competition to be undefeated going into round six. After finishing ninth on the ladder last season, the Broncos have clearly gone to another level, perhaps in an attempt to secure the Brisbane fans after the Dolphins have finally brought some competition to the Queensland capital.

Payne Haas effectively owns the prop position in this team at the moment having dominated every week at this point. He scored one of the nine tries while running for 121 metres from 16 runs. He also laid 14 tackles in a quality all-around effort.

9. Hooker - Harry Grant (Storm)

A huge win for the Storm on Friday night over the Rabbitohs moved them into sixth on the ladder having won three and lost two. The Storm are always competitive and 2023 looks no different. A clash with the Roosters on Thursday will be the side's biggest test yet.

Harry Grant has clearly become the Storm's best player, he consistently makes this side and is always picking up Dally M votes. In this match, he ran for 90 metres but it was the defensive effort that proved most fruitful. He laid 46 tackles while kicking for 189 metres, not a bad effort when he's considered the second kick taker after Munster.

10. Prop - Lindsay Collins (Roosters)

The Roosters have a massive clash this weekend with them coming up against the Storm in Melbourne on Thursday night, certainly not an easy win. With the Roosters already having had their bye there will of course be questions about how they run out the season going forward.

Lindsay Collins acted as a wrecking ball for the Roosters on the weekend running for 125 metres. More than half of those (63) came post-contract. On the defensive end, he also laid 27 tackles in an effort that easily gets him into this side.

11. Second Row - Ryan Matterson (Eels)

Going into the season the Eels were predicted to be one of the better sides. However, now five weeks in they sit equal with the Canberra Raiders and only one win above the Tigers. There were positive signs on the weekend though with them putting on late points against the Roosters.

While tries were being scored all around him Ryan Matterson was a beast on the defensive end. He laid 38 tackles, the most for the Eels while also going on 14 runs for just under 100 metres. A solid effort in the losing side.

12. Second Row - Jacob Preston (Bulldogs)

That's right, the Bulldogs finally got a win on the weekend, beating the Cowboys in golden point time thanks to a Burton field goal in the 85th moment. The win scraps the Dogs into the top eight and potentially could be higher after playing the Rabbitohs this weekend.

Preston was clearly the best for the Bulldogs going on 11 runs for 85 metres. Nothing super spectacular in terms of metres but he made them effective scoring twice. He also laid 45 tackles in a great all-around effort for the big Bulldog.

13. Lock - Cameron Murray (Rabbithos)

This weekend should see a much easier game for the Bunnies with them coming up against the Bulldogs on Friday afternoon. With the Rabbitohs now 13th on the ladder they need to find consistent wins if the Bunnies are to get near the top half of the ladder as they were predicted to do so before the season began.

Cameron Murray is remarkably consistent in this position. Very few players manage to have the kind of impact from the number 13 like Murray does and he did it again against the Storm. He laid 37 tackles while going on 13 runs for 89 metres. A try assist never hurts the case either.