At the start of this season based on the way we had finished last season and off season player recruitment, what was everyone's realistic opinion on how high we would finish on the ladder? I was pretty confident we would make the eight, but would just be making up the numbers in the final series, and didn't really see us a chance to take it out. Yes, we finished equal first last season, but the top teams really had a poor start to 2014 and started to come good at the back end when we started to get injuries and our forwards started to show they were not able to compete with the bigger packs like the Roosters, Cowboys and Souths. Even with a fit side playing in the 2014 final series, and being blessed with a very favourable draw in the second week, would of been some effort to knock over a Cowboys, Roosters, or a determined Souths side. Looking at 2015 I was hoping and confident though, we would still be playing in an 11th consecutive finals series, having us finish around 6th or 7th Cowboys Souths Roosters Dogs Penrith Manly Storm Warriors/Broncos What I didn't think would happen would be the sudden rise in the quality of the Dragons and Broncos, that the Storm would get even better, and that our forward pack (even fully fit) would have to rank the lowest in NRL. I can't name a single NRL side with a worst pack then ours (fully fit). What makes it even harder, teams such as Knights, Titans, and even Sharks are starting to show real signs of improvement. We now have a team of aging stars, a soft pack and not much depth. The Sharks and Titans and Dragons were in our position not that long ago - you couldn't see where they would snag a win, yet they have blooded some great young talent and their forwards have stepped up, along with their structures and team spirit. Defence also is playing a big part I know with some players back, we can get a few wins, but we can't expect to do much with the rooster we have. Even if we sign some good halves and a couple of forwards for next year, it would be a great start, but we are still in a lot of trouble unless we are able to bring through a few more turbos and the coaching structures and conditioning need a complete over haul. I watched all 3 games yesterday, just to see how far off we really are - and we are a long way off - even with a fit side. The competitions packs are just bigger, faster and fitter. The outside backs and wingers are quick and doing their job and apart from Penrith (who looked pretty bad without their halves) we have the worst structure in defence (even with a fit side) I think we just have to get use to losing more than winning for the next rebuilding period.