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Dragons rising star Zac Lomax.

Beaten by a point by a very good Rabbitohs side in the second week of the finals, the Dragons' 2018 season was still regarded as disappointing by some considering they had been the competition's outright leaders after 16 rounds.

With a stacked forward pack and two dominant halves, they were almost a no-go zone in Fantasy as many of the team's big names cancelled each other out as genuine Fantasy keepers.

Tackling machine Cameron McInnes was the exception, while a couple of young guns could emerge as cut-price weapons in 2019.

Here are three players to keep an eye out for when picking your starting Fantasy squad in 2018:

Cameron McInnes

The new 21-man squads and open bench introduced by NRL Fantasy in 2018 came at just the right time for McInnes, with Fantasy coaches able to select more than two hookers in their squad for the first time.

With Fantasy player of the year Damien Cook and legendary scorer Cameron Smith both must-haves by season's end, those Fantasy coaches who had McInnes as their third dummy-half got a huge leg-up at the business end of the year.

The Dragons' No.9 averaged a little under 56 points a game but actually improved as the season went on, scoring more than 59 points a game after round six.

It makes him slightly underpriced for his scoring potential at the start of 2019 and a genuine alternative if you don't want to splash the cash on Cook or Smith at the start of the new campaign.

Luciano Leilua

Ignore for a moment the fact the Dragons boast an all-Origin back row of Tyson Frizell, Tariq Sims and Jack de Belin and consider the numbers when it comes to ball-playing big man Leilua.

In four appearances as a starting second-rower he scored a massive 61.8 points a game, and in 2019 he's priced as a 30-point player.

There's massive upside there if Leilua gets the minutes (he played 80 on three of those occasions and 77 in the other game).

But that remains a big "if" considering the quality of the Red V pack when fully fit.

Off the bench, Leilua's impact drops significantly – he averaged 29 minutes and 18 points per game as an interchange player – so he could be one to consider if an injury hits one of the team's big names, or if a reshuffle opens up a spot in the second row.

Zac Lomax

A standout in his first few appearances in first grade as an 18-year-old, Lomax is a star of the future and should get a spot in the centres or on the wing in round 1 following the departure of Nene Macdonald to the Cowboys.

He played four games in 2018 but only two in the regular season, and one of those was a five-minute cameo that resulted in a score of -2.

It means he's all but base price despite the fact he scored 39 and 37 in two finals games last year.

With consistent performances, any average above 25 would make Lomax a cash cow worth having this season.

Dragons player prices & positions

Cameron McInnes $837,000, HOK
Jack de Belin $731,000, 2RF
Tyson Frizell $700,000, 2RF
Ben Hunt $687,000, HLF
Paul Vaughan $642,000, FRF
Tariq Sims $630,000, 2RF
Euan Aitken $568,000, CTR
Corey Norman $567,000, HLF
James Graham $561,000, FRF
Gareth Widdop $557,000, HLF
Matthew Dufty $528,000, WFB
Korbin Sims $467,000, FRF
Luciano Leilua $447,000, 2RF
Tim Lafai $430,000, CTR
Jordan Pereira $418,000, WFB
Jeremy Latimore $369,000, FRF
Blake Lawrie $276,000, FRF
Jonus Pearson $258,000, WFB
Zac Lomax $230,000, CTR, WFB
Darren Nicholls $228,000, HLF
Jacob Host $228,000, FRF, 2RF
Jai Field $228,000, HLF
Lachlan Maranta $228,000, WFB
Mitchell Allgood $228,000, FRF, 2RF
Reece Robson $223,000, HOK
Josh Kerr $212,000, FRF
Lachlan Timm $212,000, FRF
Mikaele Ravalawa $212,000, WFB, CTR
Steven Marsters $212,000, WFB
Tristan Sailor $212,000, WFB, HLF

Five key matchups of the Dragons' 2019 draw

Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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