Agree with that to some extent but for the first time in living memory if fit 6 or 7 of the starting 17 will be key players in NRL teams. And we aren't talking about basement dweller teams either.
Our pool of elite players is tiny and we need 17 players well coached, fit and playing to their full potential to trouble either Aus or NZ. It does rely on Australia underperforming but you have to challenge them hard to bring out those dodgy displays. We don't stay in those games for long enough and you are right Origin is a huge advantage. However, you could argue that after Thurston, Smith, Gallen, Slater, Hodges, Parker, Cronk, Bird etc. have moved on are any of those up and coming players significantly better than the top Kiwi or English counterparts?
With SL struggling then players like Daryl Clark can whizz through the system and into elite squads. I've said it before (and remember Gus Gould saying it quite a few years ago) that English players are very talented and half of the battle is mentality and intensity. I am more than happy to see young SL players trying their luck in the NRL. It also helps the English system gain more respect.
There will always be new players replacing the ones that retire.
They may not seem as good now but once given the chance they will do the job asked of them.
Cronk had to wait till Lockyer eventually retired to get proper recognition at Test level.
Cherry Evans will step up, Hodges and Slater are hanging in with past respect and performances.
I am sure Hayne could fill in at fullback or Centre if needs be. Apparently he has done it before.
Its not really about waiting for Australia to fall or fail, its about matching them and perhaps playing a different style to beat them, having Macca as the National Coach is not a great asset in this regard, IMO.
Hayne has freakish skills as shown in the link below.