Super League 2018: Team guide and predictions
The 2018 Super League season starts this week so here is our look at each team's odds and how we rate their chances heading into the new campaign.
2017 finish (after 23 rounds): 1st
BetStars odds to finish top: 4/1
Prospects: Zak Hardaker will be a major loss as he awaits his fate for a failed drugs test but the rest of the Castleford team remains largely intact and Joe Wardle is a more-than-useful addition so they are sure to be challenging at the top.
2017 finish: 4th
BetStars odds to finish top: 7/2
Prospects: Recruitment has been negligible but Saints only need to replicate their form of the second half of the 2017 season to be pushing for honours. With a full close season under his belt, head coach Justin Holbrook can take the team all the way to Old Trafford.
It's getting closer... 📆🙌 pic.twitter.com/qWx0ChIoyC-- St.Helens R.F.C. (@Saints1890) January 29, 2018
2017 finish: 2nd
BetStars odds to finish top: 11/2
Prospects: It took Leeds some time to recover from the loss of Kevin Sinfield and Jamie Peacock and their prospects in 2018 will depend on how quickly they put behind them the considerable loss of two more club legends, Danny McGuire and Rob Burrow. However, they are sure to be challenging for the top four.
2017 finish: 3rd
BetStars odds to finish top: 6-1
Prospects: The retirement of Gareth Ellis has left a huge void but the pack is still imposing and Hull look to have picked up a handy replacement for popular winger Mahe Fonua with the blockbusting Bureta Faraimo so they are sure to be in the mix.
2017 finish: 6th
BetStars odds to finish top: 10/3
Prospects: Wigan are determined to make amends for their failure to make the semi-finals in 2017 but they are arguably weaker in the absence of Michael McIlorum and their early-season trip to Australia could derail those plans.
2017 finish: 10th
BetStars odds to finish top: 7/1
Prospects: New head coach Steve Price has been forced to rebuild the side that dropped out of the top eight in 2017 and, although a marked improvement is guaranteed, it could take time to re-establish Warrington as a force.
2017 finish: 9th
BetStars odds to finish top: 40/1
Prospects: After their brush with relegation in 2017, the Dragons will surely have learned their lessons and, with a full close season to plot their improvement, a top-eight spot will be the minimum requirement of demanding owner Bernard Guasch.
2017 finish: 5th
BetStars odds to finish top: 35/1
Prospects: With some tidy additions to an already-useful squad, Chris Chester's men could once more be dark horses for the semi-finals.
2017 finish: 8th
BetStars odds to finish top: 25/1
Prospects: If he stays fit, the Giants have an exciting attacking weapon in Australian full-back Jake Mamo but there are question marks over their pack and a top-eight spot could be just out of their reach.
Salford Red Devils
2017 finish: 7th
BetStars odds to finish top: 80/1
Prospects: There might be less disruption off the field with the departure of owner Marwan Koukash but Salford will miss his financial input and spending well below the salary cap could hinder coach Ian Watson's bid for another top-eight finish.
2017 finish: 12th
BetStars odds to finish top: 250/1
Prospects: Little went right for the Vikings in the close season with the tragic loss of Kato Ottio as well as the about-turn from another new signing Will Matthews and another tough year is in prospect.
2017 finish: 1st in Championship
BetStars odds to finish top: 100/1
Prospects: With the notable exception of new signing Danny McGuire, Rovers' close-season recruitment has so far been modest and they face an enormous task hanging on to their Super League place, especially with Leigh and Toronto pushing for promotion from the Championship.