The Broncos are racing the clock to fast track their young squad before Adam Reynolds retires, while Souths have a huge hole to fill to keep their premiership windows open.
Meanwhile, the Eels are rebuilding despite making the grand final last season with six of their starting 17 moving on and the Panthers’ dynasty is in danger with a host of players off-contract in 2023.
Read on for every NRL club’s premiership window.
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Analysis: The Broncos are a young squad on the rise, but given their late season fade-out in 2022 they are still a couple of years away from competing for a title.
Young guns Selwyn Cobbo, Kobe Hetherington, Kotoni Staggs, Reece Walsh, Xavier Willison and Blake Mozer are all signed until 2025, which gives them a core of exciting up and coming stars to build the team around.
Meanwhile, Patrick Carrigan, Payne Haas, Ezra Mam, Brendan Piakura, Jordan Riki and TC Robati are locked in until 2024.
However this young core of stars still need time to develop into seasoned professionals who can deliver consistent results as the dire end to the 2022 season proved.
The only two players with premiership winning experience in the Broncos squad are skipper Adam Reynolds and second-rower Kurt Capewell, who are both signed until 2024.
The Broncos will be hoping both players can play well into their 30’s, but Reynolds will be 34 by the time his deal comes to an end and could realistically only play on until he is 35 at the most.
That leaves the Broncos until 2025 to lift the trophy because history shows teams struggle to win premierships without a class halfback at the helm.
Mam has the potential to take over from Reynolds when he retires, but they are very different players and the Broncos have only won one premiership since their coach Kevin Walters and Allan Langer retired and that was with Darren Lockyer running the show in 2006.
That’s how important class halves and particularly ones with good kicking games are to premiership success, so it is hard to see Brisbane’s premiership credentials improving when Reynolds retires.
There is also uncertainty surrounding the coach with Walters only signed until the end of the 2023 season and a change of coach could alter the development of this Broncos side for better or worse.
Premiership window: 2024-2025
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Analysis: The Raiders currently have four forwards signed until 2025 and beyond in props Joseph Tapine (2027) and Josh Papalii (2025) and back-rowers Corey Harawira-Naera and Corey Horsburgh both (2025).
Spine players Jack Wighton, Jamal Fogarty and Zac Woolford are all signed until 2024, while fullback Xavier Savage comes off-contract in 2023.
The Raiders have a good core of exciting youngsters signed until 2024, including Nick Cotric, Sebastian Kris, Matthew Timoko, Semi Valemei and Husdson Young to build the future of the club around.
However, the key to keeping the Raiders’ premiership window open is holding onto Wighton, Fogarty and Savage long-term.
There are also doubts if Woolford is the hooker to lead them all the way to the title given the importance of the position.
Woolford had an excellent season in 2022, but he bases his game more on slick service than spark and creativity with his running and passing games around the ruck.
Ricky Stuart is signed on as coach until 2025 and will be desperate to win the Green Machine a first premiership since 1994 before he hangs up the coaching whistle.
However, there are doubts if this current roster has enough to go all the way and the Raiders may need to recruit some more players in key positions to get over the hump.
Premiership window: 2023-2025
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Analysis: The length of incoming coach Cameron Ciraldo’s five-year deal is a sign that the Bulldogs’ premiership window is a few years away from opening yet.
Bulldogs boss Phil Gould sacked Trent Barrett to bring in a new coach to build the squad from scratch with just seven players signed beyond 2023.
Those seven are Josh Addo-Carr and Raymond Faitala-Mariner both (2025) and Matt Burton, Max King, Jacob Kiraz, Tevita Pangai Jr and Aaron Schoupp (2024).
Viliame Kikau (2026) and Reed Mahoney (2025) will take that tally to nine when they join the club in 2023.
That means that the large bulk of the Bulldogs’ squad are playing for their futures in their first year under Ciraldo, including the underperforming Pangai Jr, who has already been shopped around.
The Bulldogs’ squad could look decidedly different come 2024, which makes it difficult to know when this club’s premiership window will open let alone how long it will stay open for.
Burton is a key re-signing for the club to build their future around, but he will still need a halfback beside him and a fullback capable of winning premierships, with Kyle Flanagan and Jake Averillo not up to that standard at this stage of their careers.
Gould and Ciraldo will now plot an extensive recruitment and retention drive to build a premiership calibre team over the course of Ciraldo’s five-year deal, but on what they have currently, the Bulldogs premiership window won’t open for a few years yet.
Premiership window: 2026-2027
Analysis: Under new coach Craig Fitzgibbon in his first year at the helm the Sharks shook up the NRL to finish second in the regular season and their premiership window looks open for the foreseeable future.
The biggest question mark surrounding the Sharks’ premiership credentials was whether Nicho Hynes could develop into an elite halfback and he answered it in emphatic style with a record win in the Dally M Medal last season.
The Sharks have seven players signed until 2025 and beyond in Blayke Brailey, Dale Finucane, Tom Hazelton, Oregon Kaufusi, Cameron McInnes, Ronaldo Mulitalo and Briton Nikora.
Key playmakers Hynes and Matt Moylan are signed until 2024 along with promising fullback Kade Dykes, Toby Rudolf and Connor Tracey.
With Brailey locked up until 2026, the key for the Sharks is to lock down spine players Hynes and William Kennedy long-term and find a successor to Moylan at five-eighth.
The other area the Sharks need to reinvigorate their squad is in the forward pack with Andrew Fifita retiring after being let go by the club and Wade Graham unsigned beyond 2022 and coming to the end of his career.
The Sharks have the makings of a premiership calibre squad, but their straight sets exit from the 2022 finals series shows they still have work to do to win a first premiership since 2016, but with Fitzgibbon at the helm they are trending in the right direction.
Premiership window: 2023-2026
Analysis: The Dolphins still have five places to fill in their top 30 for their inaugural season in 2023 and they look set to struggle in their first campaign.
The club’s failure to land a marquee playmaker has been a disaster after missing out on a host of superstars, which they could have built the club around, most notably Cameron Munster and Kalyn Ponga.
Their starting spine next season looks like being Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow at fullback, Anthony Milford and Sean O’Sullivan in the halves and Jeremy Marshall-King at hooker.
All four at their best are handy players, but they lack the class to match the top teams in the premiership race.
The Dolphins have just seven players signed for 2025 in Jack Bostock, Kenny Bromwich, Jamayne Isaako, Robert Jennings, Isaiya Katoa, Felise Kaufusi and O’Sullivan.
Representative players Jesse and Kenny Bromwich, Kaufusi, Tom Gilbert and Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow are the keys to driving success for the newest NRL franchise.
However, the make-up of their current squad on paper doesn’t look close to challenging the best teams in the NRL let alone pushing for a premiership at this early stage in their history.
Wayne Bennett will have this team motivated and ready to hit the ground running and they could even surprise next season and scrape into the top eight.
But more likely there will be some tough times for this team early in their history, with the current squad doing the hard yards to pave the way for future success down the line.
And with Bennett tipped to retire in 2025, it is unlikely he will add to his seven premierships before he hangs up the coach’s whistle for good.
Premiership window: 2028-2030
GOLD COAST TITANS
Analysis: The Titans’ failed recruitment strategy has put their hopes for a maiden premiership on ice until they can develop or recruit an elite spine.
Justin Holbrook put his faith in Jayden Campbell, AJ Brimson, Toby Sexton and Erin Clark in 2022 and the club only just avoided the wooden spoon.
Campbell has plenty of potential, but is still learning his trade, while Brimson has shown he offers more at fullback than five-eighth.
Sexton was a massive disappointment at halfback, but he still has time on his side to grow into an NRL standard playmaker, while Clark is better suited to lock.
The Titans’ have made two astute signings in Kieran Foran and Sam Verrills to help bolster their spine, but both are only committed to the club for the next two years.
The club has just four players signed beyond 2024 in skipper Tino Fa’asuamaleaui, Beau Fermor and Brimson (2026) and Clark (2025).
Perhaps that is a sign the Titans know their current squad is not good enough to take them where they want to go and they are looking at an extensive recruitment drive in the coming seasons.
David Fifita’s expiring mega contract should free up some cap space in 2024 because even if he stays at the Titans he won’t be on anywhere near $1.25 million a season.
Justin Holbrook faces a huge challenge next season to get the club back on track and his deal which expires in 2024 could be cut short if he doesn’t produce some much improved results.
Unless they can recruit or develop some superstars in their spine, this team won’t be challenging for the top eight let alone a premiership for the foreseeable future.
Premiership window: 2027-2028
MANLY SEA EAGLES
Analysis: The fallout from the Pride jersey player boycott derailed the Sea Eagles 2022 season and saw their coach Des Hasler sacked, but it is easy to forget they made the preliminary final with the same team in 2021.
The loss of their best player Tom Trbojevic arguably had more to do with Manly’s failed season than the jersey saga and his return should spark immediate improvements in 2023.
Trbojevic is not only a freak of nature who can score and set up tries at will, but he makes every Manly player on the field play with more confidence and in turn at a higher level.
With most of the squad that went within a game of the 2021 grand final still on their books, Manly can get back on track in 2023 and compete for a premiership.
The biggest question mark is can incoming coach Anthony Seibold galvanise the players and put the pride jersey saga behind them, particularly if players again boycott the jersey next season.
Manly can afford to wipe one game out next season if they wear the jersey minus the players who refuse to wear it, but they can’t let it derail their whole season again.
Manly have eight players signed beyobd 2024, including the Trbojevic brothers and Jason Saab (2026) and Josh Aloiai, Daly Cherry-Evans, Haumole Olakau’atu and Kelma Tuilagi (2025).
A lot depends on how prodigy Josh Schuster develops from a back-rower into a consistent and reliable halves partner for Cherry-Evans.
Manly also need to recruit or develop a hooker because they have struggled to fill Api Koroisau’s void since he returned to Penrith and Lachlan Croker just doesn’t offer enough with his running game and creativity out of dummyhalf.
Premiership window: 2023-2026
Analysis: Cameron Munster’s decision to shun the Dolphins and re-sign until 2027 means the Storm will be competing for titles as long as he is in the team.
The Storm had three of their four spine players signed long-term in Ryan Papenhuyzen (2025), Jahrome Hughes (2026) and Harry Grant (2026), but Munster was the final piece of the puzzle and arguably the most important.
While ever the Storm have arguably the best spine in the NRL they are premiership contenders and keeping this quartet together is huge for the club’s title ambitions going forward.
The problem the Storm have is they saw a massive chunk of their forward pack walk out the door at the end of last season in Jesse and Kenny Bromwich, Felise Kaufusi and Brandon Smith and replacing them will be no easy feat.
Even the most talented spine can’t operate without their forwards setting the platform up front.
Eliesa Katoa and Tariq Sims are handy additions, but replacing the versatility of Smith and the extra pressure his departure puts on Grant are unknowns heading into a new dawn for the Storm.
Craig Bellamy has also not committed beyond 2023 and if he retires from coaching in the next season or two as expected, the Storm will have some massive shoes to fill.
The club’s success has been built on Bellamy and his ability to get the best out of players from the superstars to the journeymen and it will take time to transition to life after the master coach.
However, Bellamy has instilled his values in a core group of players and staff and if someone like Billy Slater takes over when he departs there is no reason to believe the Storm dynasty can’t continue and they will be competing for premierships and the top four at the very least.
Premiership window: 2023-2027
Analysis: The Knights can shelve any premiership aspirations until they address their woeful defence and find a halfback that is capable of guiding the team around the park.
The club have failed to replace their most influential player in Mitchell Pearce and their attack looked rudderless in 2022 with Adam Clune, Jake Clifford and Phoenix Crossland failing to cement the key No.7 role.
Rumours persist the club are trying to lure Luke Brooks to the Hunter, but given he has never played finals footy he is hardly a silver bullet for the side.
The Knights are also trying to lure Manly star Reuben Garrick to the club to play fullback and switch Kalyn Ponga to five-eighth, which could dramatically improve their playmaking in the halves, particularly if they land Brooks as well.
The Knights have six players signed until at least 2025 with Ponga locked up until (2027), Daniel Saifiti (2026) and Jayden Brailey, Adam Elliott, Jack Hetherington and Leo Thompson all (2025).
The Knights have some talent locked up until 2024 in Bradman Best, Mat Croker, Dane Gagai, Tyson Gamble and Jacob Saifiti.
However, Newcastle just don’t have enough players committed to the club long-term who are in the sweet spot of their careers, in key positions and in form.
Ponga is the key to delivering a premiership to the club, but he needs to find consistency and realise his immense potential and he needs more help around him.
If the Knights can recruit well and improve their defence, culture and standards, they can push for a title at the back end of Ponga’s deal, but until then they are a middle of the pack team at best.
Premiership window: 2026-2027
NORTH QUEENSLAND COWBOYS
Analysis: The Cowboys fell agonisingly short of a grand final last season and on what they produced in 2022 they can compete for premierships for the next few years at least.
The Cowboys have eight players signed until at least 2025, including Jason Taumalolo and Scott Drinkwater (2027), Murray Taulagi (2026), and Reuben Cotter, Valentine Holmes, Luciano Leilua, Heilum Luki and Griffin Neame (2025).
With Drinkwater committed long-term and halves Chad Townsend and Tom Dearden locked in until 2024, the Cowboys just need Reece Robson to sign an extension to keep their spine in tact for the next two seasons at least.
Along with Townsend and Dearden, the Cowboys also have Tom Chester, Kyle Feldt and Coen Hess locked in until 2024, so the nucleus of the team is staying together long-term.
Payten is on the verge of signing an extension, which should help the Cowboys players follow suit in the coming years.
Try-scoring superstar Jeremiah Nanai is the priority for the Cowboys and they need to offer him a similar deal to Taumalolo’s 10-year $1 million a season contract.
If they can keep their spine and Nanai, the Cowboys can compete for titles until Taumalolo’s career comes to an end in 2027 at least.
Premiership window: 2023-2027
Analysis: The Eels are in a very tricky spot despite making their first grand final since 2009 last season, with six players from their starting 17 moving on to other clubs.
Marata Niukore (Warriors), Isaiah Papali’i (Wests Tigers), Oregon Kaufusi (Sharks), Reed Mahoney (Bulldogs), Ray Stone (Dolphins) and Tom Opacic (Hull KR) are all gone in 2023, while Nathan Brown is reportedly set to be moved on to the Tigers.
Hooker Mahoney will be the toughest player to replace, with recruit Josh Hodgson injury prone and in the twilight of his career, while his deal is only guaranteed for one season.
The Eels have just six players committed beyond 2024, including Shaun Lane, Ryan Matterson and Junior Paulo (2026) and Reagan Campbell-Gillard, Haze Dunster and Clint Gutherson (2025).
The biggest hurdle the Eels face in their quest for a drought-breaking title is locking up star halves Mitchell Moses and Dylan Brown long-term.
Both playmakers are free to negotiate with rivals on November 1 and could command top dollar on the open market, so the Eels will have to open the checkbook to keep them both.
If recruits J’maine Hopgood (Panthers), Jirah Momoisea (Knights) and Jack Murchie (Warriors) can fill the holes in the forward pack and Hodgson can wind back the clock at dummyhalf, the Eels might be able to squeeze another premiership tilt or two out.
But if the Eels lose Moses or Brown or god forbid both it will be a long time before they can make another grand final let alone win one.
If Brad Arthur can’t get the job done before his deal expires in 2024, it might be time to rebuild the club and take it in a new direction.
Premiership window: 2023-2024
Analysis: The Panthers are riding high on the back of three straight grand finals and back-to-back premierships, but history shows what goes up must come down eventually.
The Panthers have the squad to win another title in 2023, but continuing the dynasty depends on their ability to keep their premiership winning squad together.
Penrith have just three players signed beyond 2024 in Nathan Cleary (2027), James Fisher-Harris (2026) and Izack Tago (2025).
The loss of key players Viliame Kikau and Api Koroisau will hurt their ability to go for a three-peat in the short-term, but how they manage their retention will go a long way towards deciding how long their premiership window stays open.
Stephen Crichton, Spencer Leniu, Liam Martin, Brian To’o, Scott Sorensen and Soni Luke all come off-contract in 2023 and keeping them all could prove very difficult.
The following season in 2024 the likes of skipper Isaah Yeo, Dylan Edwards, Jarome Luai, Moses Leota and Taylan May come off-contract, so the Panthers have their work cutout over the next two seasons to keep the Kingdom they built from crumbling.
With coach Ivan Cleary and halfback Nathan Cleary signed until 2027, the Panthers have two key men to build their premiership aspirations around for the next five years at least.
But how many of Cleary’s teammates stay loyal as their prices rise on the open market will decide just how long their premiership window can stay open.
Premiership window: 2023-2027
ST GEORGE ILLAWARRA DRAGONS
Analysis: The Dragons are in turmoil and have to get a lot of things right before they can think about a first premiership since 2010.
First and foremost they need to back or sack Anthony Griffin and it appears the latter is the only option given what has transpired at the club this season.
The Dragons have not made the finals in two season under Griffin and he appears to have lost the dressing room with just two players attending the club’s annual award’s night.
Two of the club’s brightest stars Tyrell Sloan and Jayden Sullivan have twice asked for releases despite being signed for the next two and three seasons respectively.
However, both Sloan and Sullivan can’t get a game in their preferred positions with Cody Ramsey and Ben Hunt in their way.
Reports suggested Sloan and Sullivan have been promised Griffin won’t coach beyond 2023, which is why they have withdrawn their release requests.
The Dragons have just four players signed beyond 2024 in Zac Lomax (2026) and Ben Hunt, Jack Bird and Sullivan (2025).
The cumb has 10 players signed until 2024 in Talatau Amone, Jack de Belin, Mat and Max Feagai, Jaiyden Hunt, Francis and Michael Molo, Ramsey, Mikaele Ravalawa, Jaydn Su’A, Moses Suli and Sloan.
The Dragons need to bite the bullet and back their young guns hoping that some short-term pain can lead to some much improved results down the track once they learn their craft.
With Sloan at fullback, Sullivan at halfback alongside Amone and Hunt at hooker, the Dragons have a spine they can build a team around for the next three seasons at least.
By not playing the youngsters, the Dragons have not made the finals anyway so what is the harm in blooding them and building a team that can contend in two or three year’s time?
Premiership window: 2025-2026
SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS
Analysis: The Rabbitohs have made the last five preliminary finals, but have been unable to get over the premiership hump and 2022 was a new dawn minus longtime halfback Adam Reynolds.
Reynolds’ departure set Souths’ premiership aspirations back a couple of years while rookie halfback Lachlan Ilias learns his trade in the NRL and the rest of the team get used to life after their former skipper.
The Rabbitohs have one of the most settled squads in the NRL with no signings for 2023, although they are reportedly interested in giving George Burgess a lifeline after he left the Dragons, which would help make up for the loss of Mark Nicholls to the Dolphins.
Souths currently have seven players signed until 2025 in Ilias, Alex Johnston, Haizyn Mellars, Davvy Moale, Tyrone Munro, Cameron Murray and Daniel Suluka-Fifita.
The club has three spine stars in Latrell Mitchell, Cody Walker and Damien Cook coming off-contract in 2023 and re-signing all three is the key to their title aspirations going forward.
Souths have 14 players coming off-contract in 2023, including the big three and just how many recommit to the club will make or break their premiership hopes over the next few seasons.
If Mitchell, Cook and Walker sign long-term and Ilias matures into a quality first grade halfback then Souths have the squad to challenge for the title in the coming seasons.
But Walker and Cook are coming to the end of their careers just as Ilias is rising up the ranks, so the Rabbitohs need to take advantage of their fast closing premiership window, before their big guns retire and they enter a rebuilding phase.
Premiership window: 2024-2026
Analysis: The Roosters are rebuilding their identity after the retirements of key players Boyd Cordner, Jake Friend and Cooper Cronk in recent years, but they still have the squad to challenge for the title.
The club has been hampered by injuries since they won back-to-back titles, but on paper they have the squad to return to the top of the mountain.
The key for the Roosters is fitting the talented pieces of their squad puzzle into a cohesive and effective unit.
James Tedesco is the best fullback in the world, but they also have Joseph Manu and Joseph Suaalii who can play the position.
Luke Keary has had concussion issues in the past, but finished last season strongly and his partnership with young gun Sam Walker is growing every year, but Manu would also make a devastating five-eighth.
The Roosters have a huge retention period coming up with just two players signed beyond 2024 in Lindsay Collins (2026) and Brandon Smith (2025).
Tedesco, Keary, Manu and Suaalii all come off-contract in 2024, which could create issues when negotiating new upgraded deals.
Walker comes off-contract in 2023 and is tipped to sign a lucrative extension to be the club’s long-term halfback.
Tedesco and Keary have been the driving force behind the Roosters’ premiership pushes, but since they are coming to the back end of their careers, their premiership window might be closing.
However, Trent Robinson is signed until 2028 and Nick Politis always wants his team to be competing for titles, so as long as they are at the club that will be the benchmark.
Still, it is impossible to ignore that once some of their biggest names hang up the boots, the Roosters will need to rebuild their team to keep their premiership window open.
Premiership window: 2023-2028
Analysis: The Warriors have never won a premiership in their history despite making grand finals in 2002 and 2011 and they have a lot of work to do to get back to those heights.
Former Panthers assistant Andrew Webster has been brought in as coach until 2025 and he has a massive job on his hands to get the club competing for the top eight let alone a title.
The loss of young gun Reece Walsh is a big blow, but the Warriors have bought well in Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad and Te Maire Martin to improve their spine.
They have also added some steel to their pack in Marata Niukore and Mitchell Barnett, while Dylan Walker will provide some much needed spark off the bench as a utility.
Unfortunately, Shaun Johnson is coming to the end of his career and is well past his best and without a class halfback it will be difficult for the Warriors to contest for a premiership in the short-term.
The Warriors have eight players signed beyond 2024 in Barnett, Martin, Klokstad, Viliami Vailea, Ronald Volkman and Walker (2025) and Addin Fonua-Blake and Niukore (2026).
Fonua-Blake has so far failed to live up to the standards he set at Manly and he needs to repay the club’s long-term investment.
Much will depend on whether Volkman can develop into a quality half after switching form the Roosters last season, while Luke Metcalf is another intriguing option at five-eighth.
The Warriors have nine players coming off-contract in 2023, including Johnson so they will be playing for their futures and Webster will start to mould the squad with his vision for the future.
At this stage the club looks a class halfback and hooker short of challenging the top spines in the NRL consistently, so they will need to develop or recruit players to fill those voids.
There looks to be some hard years ahead in the short-term, but if the Warriors can get their club in order on and off the field, their nursery of stars makes them a sleeping giant in the NRL down the track.
Premiership window: 2028-2030
Analysis: The Tigers start life under Tim Sheens and future coach Benji Marshall at rock bottom after taking out the wooden spoon last season.
Sheens will coach the team for two seasons, before Marshall takes his first head coaching gig in 2025 on a three-year deal.
But given where they have started it will take a massive overhaul of their roster to get the Tigers challenging for the top eight again let alone a premiership in the short-term.
The club has adopted a development strategy to bring through their promising juniors, but you can’t make the top eight never mind contest for the title without elite players in key positions.
Sheens has made no secret of his desire to bring some big names to the club after missing out on Cameron Munster and is reportedly targeting Mitchell Moses and James Tedesco for fairytale returns to the Tigers.
The club has recruited smartly in bringing three-time premiership winner Api Koroisau to the club to fill the important dummyhalf role, while Isaiah Papali’i will add some much needed starch to their pack.
But two players cannot pull the Tigers out of the mess they find themselves in currently and it will take a massive overhaul of their squad to produce better results consistently.
The Tigers have seven players signed beyond 2024 in Koroisau, Justin Matamua, Brent Naden, David Nofoaluma, Joe Ofahengaue, Papali’i and Stefano Utoikamanu.
Daine Laurie will vie with recruit Charlie Staines for the fullback jersey next season, while at this stage Adam Doueihi and Luke Brooks look like being the halves pairing.
However, Brooks is reportedly set to switch to the Knights, which would free up some cap space to go after Moses and Tedesco, however unlikely it is they would leave the Eels and Roosters.
The Tigers have 10 players coming off-contract in 2023, so all of them are playing for their futures as Sheens and Marshall try to rebuild the club from scratch.
Sheens and Marshall know they can’t roll out the same team every season and expect to get different results, which is why they are looking for some superstars to help bring through their next wave of talented juniors.
But this strategy will take time and there will be more pain in the short-term before the Tigers can start dreaming of a first title since 2005.
Premiership window: 2028-2030