Aaron Woods ‘a shadow’ of James Graham, says Michael Ennis



  • HE’S the $800,000 per season marquee man who forced James Graham out of Canterbury, but he’s not living up to his price tag.

    That’s the belief of former NRL premiership-winner Michael Ennis, who says Aaron Woods is “a shadow” of what Graham has been at new club St George Illawarra in the opening rounds of the season.

    Woods linked with the Bulldogs on a rich four-year deal, a move that caused Graham to sign with the Dragons on a contract worth a reported $1.8 million over three seasons.

    Upon arriving at Belmore, Woods said he was excited to play the “rugged style” of football the Bulldogs are renown for.

    But according to Ennis, who played for the Bulldogs from 2010 to 2014, the Australia and NSW Origin prop is yet to display those traits, and it was clear what the club had lost in Graham.

    “It’s evident. Look at the Dragons at the moment,” Ennis told Fox Sports.

    “(Graham) has been the heart and soul. (Dragons coach) Paul McGregor has been treasuring what James Graham has brought to that club.

    “Aaron Woods, there is so much focus on Woods being a front-rower.

    “We know what we get from David Klemmer. He’s aggressive, he welcomes the contact, he takes personal battles against opposition front-rowers.

    “Aaron Woods stepping into Graham’s shoes, in the opening two rounds — and it’s only been two rounds, let’s not go too hard — he’s been a shadow of what James Graham has done at the Dragons.

    “For me, Aaron Woods at the moment is just knocking out his numbers, but in terms of really leading this Canterbury-Bankstown forward pack, I haven’t seen that yet.”

    Woods has averaged 58 minutes in his first two games, along with 13.5 runs, 115 metres and 27.5 tackles.

    Asked whether the bearded prop needed to roll up his sleeves, Ennis replied: “Absolutely. The Roosters really targeted their centre-third the other day and it had great value.

    “When your coach comes out over the summer and says ‘I want the Dogs of War back’ … Dean Pay was one of the household names at Canterbury for his toughness, and he wants to resemble that in his football side.

    “I haven’t seen that from Aaron Woods yet, I haven’t seen that in the opening two rounds.

    “I want to see him get down and dirty, I want to see him get personal.

    “We saw it with young (James) Fisher-Harris and (George) Burgess on the weekend — a young kid standing his ground and welcoming that impact and collision.

    “I haven’t seen that from Aaron Woods yet.”


    https://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/nrl-premiership/pressure-gauge-aaron-woods-a-shadow-of-james-graham-says-michael-ennis/news-story/f4f47bc254f914be2b428bd525a96c04



  • In all honesty, that’s not Woods style. He played for us for how long, and I don’t think I ever saw that in Woods’ play. If the Dogs wanted a leader, if they wanted Woods to be a leader, then they obviously never watched the Tigers play a game of football.

    But I guess they showed that when they signed Suli didn’t they.



  • “For me, Aaron Woods at the moment is just knocking out his numbers," Ring any bells?
    I reckon I read that a few times on this forum when he was here.
    How long will it take the ‘3 Am-egos’ to realise that they were overpriced contributors to the WT past mediocrity?



  • @:

    In all honesty, that’s not Woods style. He played for us for how long, and I don’t think I ever saw that in Woods’ play. If the Dogs wanted a leader, if they wanted Woods to be a leader, then they obviously never watched the Tigers play a game of football.

    But I guess they showed that when they signed Suli didn’t they.

    Ennis needs to remember that Pay didn’t sign the majority of this squad , Hasler did

    Woods and Graham are both good players just different styles , but if I had my choice it’s James Graham



  • Could say similar about Packer compared to Woods.

    Packer’s numbers don’t look great but you feel it when he is in the field. It’s a long season and I don’t want to get cocky, so far the only player we lost who is an improvement on what we have is Teddy.


  • ForumSupporter

    Really starting to get over this

    bunch of jilted lovers…



  • Too many head knocks for Michael.

    Aaron’s numbers are the same, and that was the basis of why they signed him.



  • James Graham and Mick Ennis best mates -hardly surprising. Hard to get a word in with Mick Ennis when he is on a panel really irritating and never objective yet all of a sudden his opinion has become relevant.

    Woods can expect more of the same until the Dogs turn it around - if they do. It will be the same for all the big signings when we really see where the competition is headed.
    Benji best value signing at this pont of comp.- who would have thought



  • @:

    Too many head knocks for Michael.

    Aaron’s numbers are the same, and that was the basis of why they signed him.

    Thats almost right. His numbers are a little down on what they were last year. But, the main point is, the rest of the Dog’s pack is playing poorly so, Aaron Woods is completely ineffective. He needs to play with aggressive forwards to balance out the forward pack with his workhorse style of play. But, if the rest of them don’t bring the aggression or leadership, he’s just churning out his numbers.

    Also, they’re paying $800k for him. We have Eiso and Twal doing the exact same job and how much are we paying them? I’d say their combined salaries aren’t $800k.



  • @:

    @:

    Too many head knocks for Michael.

    Aaron’s numbers are the same, and that was the basis of why they signed him.

    Thats almost right. His numbers are a little down on what they were last year. But, the main point is, the rest of the Dog’s pack is playing poorly so, Aaron Woods is completely ineffective. He needs to play with aggressive forwards to balance out the forward pack with his workhorse style of play. But, if the rest of them don’t bring the aggression or leadership, he’s just churning out his numbers.

    Also, they’re paying $800k for him. We have Eiso and Twal doing the exact same job and how much are we paying them? I’d say their combined salaries aren’t $800k.

    I think comparing Twal & Eiso value to Woods is irrelevant.

    Woods will never be that aggressive player, and the Bulldogs knew what they were going to get out of him.

    They are probably more than happy with there return on the Woods investment.


  • ForumSupporter

    Wins are the only ‘numbers’ that matter…



  • It would be idiotic to purchase Aaron Woods and expect him to suddenly be some kind of enforcer. Never has been and I expect never will be.

    As others have said, he has a big motor, can get big metres, makes a good share of tackles, is hard to bring down and has a decent offload. The downside of this is he is slow to PTB, does not put on many big hits and in no way physically dominates other packs. He’s more like a tree than a bear, he does his work and is tough to pull down, but you don’t get out-and-out aggression.

    So Ennis is kidding himself if he wants Woods to play like Graham, they aren’t the same kind of footballer. Graham’s doing just fine after 2 games but he’s smaller than Woods, wearies as the season goes on and doesn’t have the physical presence in his carries.

    Woods isn’t stepping into Graham’s shoes, he is replacing Graham. Same as Packerlino aren’t stepping into Woods’ shoes. Dogs had a formula in 2017 that they didn’t think worked / didn’t like, and changed it up. Plenty of rounds left still to see if the change-up will have a positive outcome.

    Also, off-field instability surely doesn’t help, how about Dogs figure that out as well?



  • Everytime I see a picture or read about one of these three, the happier I am that they no longer play for our club.



  • @:

    Really starting to get over this

    bunch of jilted lovers…

    I thought you were right into these fluff stories 😆

    Fifty shades
    Mills and Boon
    Sharon woods

    :roll



  • He has never been that player, but he has talked the talk of going to play a rugged enforcer role at the dogs, so time to walk.


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