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2024 NRL Betting Preview: Best Value Win Totals

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Last updated: 22 Feb 2024
Ryan Tucker 22 Feb 2024
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  • Comprehensive 2024 NRL betting guide with our best win total predictions.
  • Review includes player movements, strengths of schedules, and future win totals.
  • Reveals betting values in the market based on thorough analysis.
nrl minor premiership
Isaah Yeo and Nathan Cleary Co-captain of the Panthers after winning the minor premiership in 2023 (Photo by Izhar Khan/Getty Images)

2024 NRL Betting Preview: Win Totals


With the last round of Pre-Season Challenge this weekend it means the 2024 NRL season is just around the corner. What better time to look at our best win totals for teams where we can see there is value to be gained against the market. 
  • 2024 NRL Betting Preview: Win Totals
  • Past Performance
  • Strength of Schedule
  • Betting Value
  • Overs & Unders Podcast
  • Brisbane Broncos - exp win total 18 wins (1st)
  • Canberra Raiders - exp win total 10 wins (11th)
  • Cronulla Sharks - exp win total 14 wins (5th)
  • Manly Sea Eagles - exp win total 9 wins (14th)
  • Melbourne Storm - exp win total 16 wins (3rd)
  • St George Dragons - exp win total 6 wins (17th)
  • New Zealand Warriors - exp win total 16 wins (4th)

Past Performance


Pre-season win totals are a tough nut to crack. Does past performance give a true indication of future wins? How much does player movement or a new coach play a role in a team's win percentage? Will early injuries to key players mean some teams fall behind the pack early? So many questions to answer.

Strength of Schedule


When we look at future win totals we take into account a range of variables not limited to those listed above. Strength of schedule also plays a key role in determining how a team will fare - where we differ from others is that we use a strength of schedule based on 3 different elements. The first is our expectations for the coming year, we make a top 8 prediction and calculate the strength of opponents based on that list, not the previous years top 8 like many other handicappers. The second metric is opponent average win % and the third element is win % based on rest days. 

Betting Value


Below we go through each team’s expected win totals and give our opinion on if there is value in the market to either bet over or under. (all odds are taken from Bet365 and are correct at time of publishing).

Overs & Unders Podcast


To hear us talk about our expectations subscribe to The Overs & Unders Podcast on your selected podcasting platform or watch the videocast through our YouTube channel below.


Brisbane Broncos - exp win total 18 wins (1st)


Over 16.5 wins

1.95

Under 16.5 wins

1.83


Last year (18 wins): Brisbane were outstanding last year and had one hand firmly on the Premiership before some Nathan Cleary magic stole it from them in the penultimate minute. Brisbane were either first or second in almost all stats that are important and the connection of their stars like Adam Reynolds, Ezra Mam and Reece Walsh was like watching magic before our eyes.

Player movement: It is fair to say that the Broncos are one of the teams that took a step backwards over the off-season losing key players in important positions. Tom Flegler and Herbie Farnworth moved across town to the Dolphins whilst Kurt Capewell has gone across the ditch to the Warriors. Fletcher Baker is a good addition but not at the level of Flegler or Capewell, yet.

Data analysis: The Broncos schedule in 2024 is middle of the pack. They will play opponents that averaged a 50% win total in 2023 and enjoy a dream run to end the season with 8 of their final 9 games being played in Queensland. Their Pythagorean Win Expectation based on 2023 results is 17 wins and they are on a 2 year trend of over achieving against expectation. Brisbane were 15-9 ATS in 2023 and were 12-12 U/O on game totals. 

Verdict: The Broncos are primed for another top season and their premiership window is here and now. The low total of 16.5 surprises us so we are taking the Over! 

Canberra Raiders - exp win total 10 wins (11th)


Over 8.5 wins

1.95

BET

Under 8.5 wins

1.83

BET


Last year (13 wins): The Raiders were lucky to sneak into the 8 last year considering their astronomical points differential (-137). They lost 5 of their last 7 games and in three of those losses could not muster more than 6 points in attack. Canberra won only 3 of 12 games against top 8 teams in 2023 the Broncos, Sharks & Roosters.

Player movement: Canberra recruited well in the off-season, losing Jack Wighton will obviously be tough but the exits of Frawley and Croker free up some cap space and playing time for the younger guns. Kaeo Weekes will be a great addition to the halves and Zac Hosking will join an already robust forward pack.

Data analysis: The Raiders have one of the easiest schedules in 2024 with their opponents having an average win percentage of 49% in 2023 but it is the second half of the season which is easiest, they have a tough start over the first 5 rounds. Canberra have a Pythagorean Win Expectation of  9 wins based on 2023’s results and are on a 2 year trend of overachieving their expectation. The Raiders were 9-15 ATS in 2023 and were 11-13 U/O on game totals. 

Verdict: It is a bit of a chance to take the Raiders Overs as their defence is pretty woeful but they are a team that is trending in the right direction in a general sense. 

Cronulla Sharks - exp win total 14 wins (5th)


Over 12.5 wins

1.88

Under 12.5 wins

1.88


Last year (14 wins): Cronulla had a breakout 22 season and regressed to the mean in 2023. With the weight of expectation the team couldn’t get over the hump of beating the top clubs going 3 of 11 against teams that finished in the top 8. The Sharks are one of the best attacking teams in the NRL and in 2023 were top 5 in Run Metres and Linebreaks.

Player movement: A relatively quiet off-season for the Sharks, Wade Graham retired and Matt Moylan moved to the Super League. Both players have been in and out of the team in recent years with injuries so the actual effect on the team is predicted to be small. 

Data analysis: Cronulla have the number 1 easiest schedule for the second year running across all three of our Strength of Season metrics. The Sharks have a Pythagorean Win Expectation of 14 wins based on 2023’s results and have alternated between under and overachieving the past 5 seasons. Cronulla were 13-11 ATS in 2023 and were 11-13 U/O on game totals with the Under heavily represented in the second half of the season.

Verdict: Cronulla are also moving into their Premiership window and have the squad to be able to compete consistently at a high level. They just need to figure out how to beat good teams, if they improve on that in any way this year they will smash this total!

Manly Sea Eagles - exp win total 9 wins (14th)


Over 12.5 wins

2.10

BET

Under 12.5 wins

1.70
BET

Last year (11 wins): Manly were only 2 wins out of the top 8 last year but it felt like their whole season just fell flat. Injuries took their toll and with players away on Origin the middle portion of the year was a struggle. The Sea Eagles are mid in most statistical measures and it is guaranteed they will lose games they should win and win games they should lose.

Player movement: Manly have lost some of their younger up and coming stars putting their future in a bit of jeopardy. But they feel they need to win now and have brought in some more experience with Luke Brookes and Jaxson Paulo. 

Data analysis: Manly have the 5th toughest schedule of all teams waiting until round 13 for their first bye after starting the season in Las Vegas. Their opponents in 2024 had an average winning percentage of 50% last season which is midlevel. The Sea Eagles Pythagorean Win Expectation based on 2023 results is 12 wins and the team has underachieved three years in a row. Manly were 12-12 ATS in 2023 and were 13-11 U/O on game totals.

Verdict: Manly are on a knife's edge, if injuries hit again or their new halves combo doesn’t work it could be even worse than 9 wins. Their coaching stinks and their defence is atrocious. Go the Under!

Melbourne Storm - exp win total 16 wins (3rd)


Over 13.5 wins

1.95

Under 13.5 wins

1.83


Last year (16 wins): Many expected Melbourne to regress last year losing most of their forward pack. They did not. The Storm were once again one of the best teams in the comp showing how good the winning culture is at the club. With their salary cap breach year excluded they have finished in the top 8 every single year since 2003. The epitome of consistency.

Player movement: The Storm have dropped some dead weight with players that were on the outer paving room for their youngsters to come through.

Data analysis: According to our metrics the Storm have the toughest schedule in the NRL, the average win percentage of their opponents in 2024 is 52% and based on our expected top 8 they have the most games against top teams. Melbourne’s Pythagorean Win Expectation based on 2023 results is 16 wins and the team has underachieved three years in a row from 2020-2022 before overachieving last year. The Storm were 13-11 ATS in 2023 and were 13-11 U/O on game totals.

Verdict: Melbourne are a quality club with a quality team. 13 wins just gets you inside the 8 and our prediction is top 4. This is the best bet of the lot, take the Over!

St George Dragons - exp win total 6 wins (17th)


Over 7.5 wins

1.88

BET

Under 7.5 wins

1.88
BET

Last year (5 wins): Things are rough in Dragons land. They fired their coach and got worse, the team couldn’t string together two consistent performances in a row and they recorded the second most opposition points after the Bulldogs.  

Player movement: Shane Flanagan takes over the reigns proper now but most of their player movements could be seen as sideways moves that don’t really push the needle. 

Data analysis: The Dragons schedule is neither tough or easy, there is definitely room for a few upsets catching teams out during Origin or late in the season, the expectation though is that the team will have checked out by August. St George’s Pythagorean Win Expectation based on 2023 results is 8 wins and the team underachieved their expectation last year. The Dragons were 13-11 ATS in 2023 and were 11-13 U/O on game totals.

Verdict: Success or any type of improvement is still a few years away. Expect things to get worse before they get better, the teams in the same tier as the Dragons have comparatively gotten better making it even tougher on the Red V. The Under is the go.

New Zealand Warriors - exp win total 16 wins (4th)


Over 12.5 wins

1.88

Under 12.5 wins

1.88


Last year (15 wins): New Zealand surprised everyone in 2023 with their resilience and never say die attitude. What really shone though was their defence with the team finishing 3rd in the NRL for opposition points scored (19.7pts/game).  

Player movement: The addition of Kurt Capewell will bolster a solid forward pack and the return of Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will add a dynamic element to an already high scoring backline.

Data analysis: The Warriors have finally caught a scheduling break from the NRL getting the 2nd easiest run in 2024. The teams that they play this season on average have a losing record giving weight to a higher win total. New Zealand’s Pythagorean Win Expectation based on 2023 results is 14 wins and the team has overachieved their expectation six years in a row the most of any team since 2013 together with Penrith between 17-22. The Warriors were 15-9 ATS in 2023 and were 13-11 U/O on game totals.

Verdict: The Warriors finally fixed their defence last year and what is learnt is not easily forgotten. With a nicer schedule in 2024 and the added dynamics of RTS and Capewell i not only see the Wahs going over their total but even improving on last years 15 wins. Take the Over!

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