5. Andy Lynch
This inclusion might surprise a few but the contribution Andy Lynch gives to his Castleford Tigers side is significant. Grant Millington is no longer seen as underrated in my opinion with everyone noticing the ability he has but alongside him, Lynch has been going under the radar at the Jungle.
The 36-year-old is still delivering impressive statistics despite his age, the prop made a staggering 3589 metres for his side last season which was the sixth highest in the competition. Lynch shows no signs of letting up, recording the tenth highest tackle count and is definitely underrated despite his age.
4. Rhys Hanbury
Widnes Vikings full-back Rhys Hanbury has been a main stay in the full-back spot under Denis Betts since his arrival from Celtic Crusaders. Often reliable in defence whilst posing an attacking threat going forward, Hanbury ranked second behind Man of Steel Zak Hardaker in metres made for a full-back in 2015.
The Australian scored four times last campaign but attributed to sixteen other tries. The signing of Corey Thompson will put pressure on the 30-year-old, but Hanbury still has a lot to offer.
3. Louis McCarthy-Scarsbrook
The headlines in the St Helens pack will go deservedly to the ever improving Alex Walmsley and the stalwart James Roby, but quietly going about his business is Louis McCarthy-Scarsbrook. Whether that be a starting position or coming off the bench, LMS brings a lift with his hard work and endeavour to the forward pack.
Last season the second-rower made the third highest metres of Saints forwards behind Walmsley and Kyle Amor, but impressively ahead of Roby. The Londoner also made the second most tackles, a tally which was headed unsurprisingly by hooker Roby.
2. Ben Currie
At just 21-years of age Ben Currie is at the other end of the spectrum to Hanbury and McCarthy-Scarsbrook, but Warrington have a real talent on their hands if they nurture him right. A breakthrough 2015 season saw the Ireland international score fourteen times whilst assisting a further twelve – combined statistics which only Stefan Ratchford at the club can match.
With the likes of Ashton Sims, Chris Hill and Ben Westwood around the player, he will only get better and don’t be surprised if Currie receives another young Player of the Year nomination in 2016 like he did last year.
1. Danny Houghton
Hull FC hooker Danny Houghton was last season named Super League’s Hitman for a second time in three season. The accolade goes to the player who has made the most tackles over the duration of a season with Houghton amassing an astonishing total of 1359, with second-placed James Roby managing 1041. The 27-year-old consistently racks up the tackle counts, averaging 45.3 per game which is a total that has incredibly risen as he has got older.
Whilst many will point to Roby being the best hooker in the league, Houghton certainly has the statistics to challenge him. With the highest marker tackles and with 10 assists to his name too, Danny Houghton is most definitely one of the most underrated players in Super League.
Published on January 25 2016 for Rugby AM.