League legend’s big call on modern NRL forwards
STEVE "Blocker" Roach would have held his own among the toughest and best forwards of any era.
Which makes it all the more impressive that the former Balmain enforcer has rated the current generation of NRL forwards the best in the game's history.
"When I started playing there wasn't all the Polynesian and Kiwis playing in the NRL you have today," Fox Sports analyst Roach said.
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"Now we also have the Englishmen. I don't think we have ever had better forwards. I honestly believe that."
It's pretty hard to argue with Blocker's assessment when you go through the list of names.
Among the locks you have Jason Taumalolo, Jake Trbojevic, Victor Radley, Cam Murray, Dale Finucane, Nathan Brown and Jai Arrow. All world class who would have stood up in any era.
In the back row the list is as long as it is tough and talented: Boyd Cordner, Tyson Frizell, Ryan Matterson, David Fifita, Wade Graham, Felise Kaufusi, Kenny Bromwich, Elliott Whitehead, John Bateman, Joe Tapine and Curtis Sironen.
In the front row the list is so deep you could name a top 10 and struggle to fit in Andrew Fifita and Jesse Bromwich, who not so long ago were probably one-two in the world.
Roach reckons Roosters enforcer Jared Waerea-Hargreaves would make his top 10 props of all time, but Manly's Addin Fonua-Blake is probably the form front-rower.
Last year it was Josh Papalii.
Then you have Daniel Saifiti and Junior Paulo, who have maybe shot ahead of David Klemmer and Paul Vaughan for NSW.
Reagan Campbell-Gillard has bounced back to his best.
Then there is Nelson Asofa-Solomona, Payne Haas, Martin Taupau, Siosiua Taukeiaho, James Fisher-Harris and young Moeaki Fotuaika.