With former Souths Sydney Rabbitoh Jordan Mailata being drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles, QRL Media's Nathan Jones and Harry Lee had a stab at an NFL team picked entirely from the Intrust Super Cup.
Defensive Tackle – Salesi Funaki
Key Attribute: Aggression
A Defensive Tackle must aim to get in the face of the offensive players. Salesi Funaki is always a handful for opponents to handle. From his strong hit ups, hard and aggressive tackles, he loves to cut down the opposition early and getting in the face of his opponents.
Honourable Mentions: Tyson Lofipo, Francis Molo.
Defensive End – Cheyne Whitelaw
Key Attribute: Determination
Defensive Ends are the edge rushers, with their goal being to tackle the Quarterback. You need to be quick off the mark, while agile and tough, and Cheyne Whitelaw is one of the most consistent forwards in the Intrust Super Cup. With a high work rate, averaging 134m and 28 tackles a game, Whitelaw is no stranger to putting in the hard yards in an attempt to shut down offensive weapons.
Honourable Mentions: Tui Kamikamica, Chris Lewis.
Linebacker – Blake Leary
Key Attribute: Durability
Linebackers are the leaders on defence. As big strong players with a strong football mind and reading offensive patterns, Blake Leary easily fits this mould. With good speed off the mark, strength in defence and dangerous off the edge, Leary's power and speed would be trouble for any running back or slot receiver.
Honourable Mentions: Jake Marketo, Brendon Gibb.
Cornerback – Nixon Putt
Key Attribute: Instinct
The Cornerback position is a specialist position that requires speed and athleticism, coupled with a string vertical leap and wingspan. At 175cm, Nixon Putt would not be the tallest Cornerback, but is a consistent performer for the PNG Hunters in both attack and defence. With blistering speed off the edge and strong, jamming defence, Putt can line up against a player of any size or position with ease.
Honourable Mentions: Sam Caslick, Connor Broadhurst, Corey Allan, Kurtis Rowe, Johnny Faletagoa'i.
Safety – Tony Tumusa
Key Attribute: Anticipation
The Safety is the defensive play caller at the back of the formation. He needs to identify early where the ball is going and who it's going to. As one of the form fullbacks in season 2018 of the Intrust Super Cup, Tumusa is a damaging runner of the ball (averaging 149m) and very strong in both attack and defence.
Honourable Mentions: Pio Seci, Sami Sauiluma.
Running Back – Jonathon Reuben
Key Attribute: Elusiveness / break tackles
Jonathon Reuben is one of those players who certainly does not lack explosiveness. Reuben has great hands, footwork and finishing ability, which makes him a prolific try scorer in the Intrust Super Cup. With seven tries (3rd) and seven line breaks (2nd) already this season, the combination of Reuben's size, speed and awareness make him an offensive weapon.
Honourable Mentions: Gideon Gela-Mosby, Troy Leo.
Fullback – Justin Olam
Key Attribute: Strength and Agility
The main role of an NFL fullback is to lead block for the running back and to run the ball for short, but important gains. Justin Olam is by far one of the strongest backs in the Intrust Super Cup. Combine his size with his speed and Olam is very hard to contain with the ball.
Honourable Mentions: Brayden McGrady, Moses Pangai.
Wide Receiver – Michael Purcell
Key Attribute: Versatility
Michael Purcell is one of the fastest, if not the fastest in the Intrust Super Cup, and would make the ideal Wide Receiver with his speed, acceleration, agility, reach and footwork. Racking up eight line breaks (1st) and 38 tackle breaks (4th) this season, Purcell's ability to create space from nothing would make him highly dangerous.
Honourable Mentions: Delouise Hoeter, Jarrod McInally, Linc Port, Jonus Pearson.
Tight End – Sebastian Pandia
Key Attribute: Power
Tight Ends are renowned for their size and athleticism on offence. Seb Pandia is one of the most damaging ball runners in the game, currently leading the competition for tackle breaks, metres, offloads and runs metres.
Honourable Mentions: Jye Ballinger, Pat Kaufusi.
Offensive Tackle – Payne Haas
Key Attribute: Size, Mobility
Payne Haas is a wrecking ball. One of the biggest players in the Intrust Super Cup, he is near impossible to contain. He is strong in both attack and defence and is known for his ability to bust tackles. The main aim of Offensive Tackle is to keep defenders away from the attacking player.
Honourable Mentions: Luke Page, Sam Tagatesese, Nat Neale.
Offensive Guard – Dave Taylor
Key Attribute: Leg drive
The Offensive Guards are the biggest players on offence and Dave Taylor is one big dude. He is near impossible to stop one-on-one and is also very strong in defence. Taylor has good leg speed and upper body strength, similar to that of an Offensive Guard.
Honourable Mentions: Enock Maki, George Fai.
Centre – Pat Politoni
Key Attribute: Awareness
Along with the Quarterback, the Centre position is responsible for leading the offence from their position. Pat Politoni does not shy away from hard work. Politoni has currently made 274 tackles, averaging 35 tackles a game at an efficiency rate of 92%, making him extremely solid in defence. Politoni has a good presence of mind in attack and is currently the leading player in the Intrust Super Cup in 2018 for try and line break assists.
Honourable Mentions: Sam Meskell, Krys Freeman.
Quarterback – Todd Murphy
Key Attribute: Intelligence
The Quarterbacks are the star playmakers in the NFL. With the responsibility of organising his offence, identifying defensive patterns and pulling off big time plays, Todd Murphy fits this role with his strong running game, vision and awareness. His passing game also contributes in his suitability as the team's Quarterback.
Honourable Mentions: Brodie Croft, Cameron Cullen, Jamal Fogarty, AJ Brimson.
Punt Returner – Wes Conlon
Key Attribute: Agility, Speed and Visibility
Wes Conlon is a great returner of the ball and, if given enough room to move, he will punish you. Known for his acceleration and footwork, one of Conlon's major strengths is his running game. No stranger to being under the high ball, Conlon would be right at home taking punts and returning for good field position.
Honourable Mentions: Daniel Ogden, Yamba Bowie, Scott Drinkwater.
Punter – Sam Scarlett
Key Attribute: Accuracy
Being an NFL Punter is all about getting your team out of danger with a pin-point accurate punt that makes the opposition work hard for field position. Sam Scarlett has one of the best kicking games in the Intrust Super Cup and is currently sitting second on the tally for overall kick metres with 1856m.
Honourable Mentions: Michael Dobson, Blake Goodman.
Kicker – Guy Hamilton
Key Attribute: Focus
As the Intrust Super Cup's leader in goals, Guy Hamilton is cool under pressure when it comes to adding the extra 2. His short approach to the ball and conversion rate of 80.5% are key factors in his selection as you need accuracy and quickness to be an NFL kicker.
Honourable Mentions: Jake Clifford, Ase Boas, Kotoni Staggs.
Selection criteria - must have played Intrust Super Cup in 2018.