NEWS Broncos ratings: Rudderless, headless, hopeless


NRL Player
Sunshine Coast
Broncos lack drive and direction
as they stumble towards finals

Greg Davis,
The Courier-Mail
September 7, 2019 8:42pm


Bisbane look very much like they will be cannon fodder in the NRL finals after barely firing a shot in a listless and lacklustre 30-14 loss to the Bulldogs on Saturday night. Barring a freakish draw at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday, Brisbane will limp into finals and will be making up the numbers after losing more games than they won in 2019. Victory over the Dogs would have handed Brisbane seventh spot on the ladder and a match-up with the injury-riddled Manly.

But they now have to play Parramatta at their new fortress at Bankwest Stadium in a sudden death encounter after squeezing into eighth place with an anything but convincing 11 wins, one draw and 12 losses and a for-and-against of minus 57. Apart from flashes of individual brilliance, Brisbane’s attack was awfully clunky and pedestrian. It had no shape, no structure and appeared quite disorganised. And the defence wasn’t much chop either as the low-scoring Bulldogs had a field day.

Anthony Milford looks on after letting in another try. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Anthony Milford looks on after letting in another try. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty ImagesANTHONY


Mixed night for the Milf. Scored a nice try with some nifty footwork and threw the last pass for another on the way to 155 running metres, eight tackle busts and 265 kicking metres. Got caught on the last tackle in the first half and failed to get a kick away. Also had a handling error when deep in attack and a mix-up with Oates when going for a bomb. Fell awkwardly in a tackle in the second half but was OK.

Spilled a bomb that handed the Bulldogs their second try to Josh Jackson but Milford did not do him any favours. Had some anxious moments with grubber kicks. Ran hard for 136 metres with a number of hit-ups to get Brisbane out of their own territory.

It was a Staggs Party in the first half with two tries to the barnstorming centre. He was in the right place, at the right time for his first four-pointer and flew high to snatch a Jake Turpin bomb out of the sky for his second. His hands let him down in the second half with four errors as he desperately tried to push passes but ran for 142 metres with five tackle busts.

Kieran Foran and Alex Glenn speak after the match. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images
Kieran Foran and Alex Glenn speak after the match. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Did not get a heap of chances but did not shirk the work. Finished with 96 running metres and 19 tackles in a typically solid effort.

Missed a team-high five tackles with his opposite number Nick Meaney scoring a hat-trick. For two of Meaney’s tries, Isaako was guilty of bad reads, coming off his wing to gift the Doggies winger a saloon passage to the tryline. Ran for 92 metres but was caught out far too often in defence.

Darius Boyd tries to palm his way through. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Darius Boyd tries to palm his way through. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Organising Brisbane’s attack is supposedly his job. Well, he didn’t do it very well as the Broncos were rudderless with the ball in hand and asked very few questions of the Canterbury defence. Threw a terrible pass to Matt Gillett and was lucky not to concede a try when Reimis Smith dispossessed him in the second half. Defended strongly with 29 tackles but no try or linebreak assists and just the three runs to offer little in attack. And please ignore the hoopla from Boyd-Bennett sycophants over last week’s man-of-the-match award, he was much improved but not in Brisbane’s best three.

Needed to be much more involved in attack. Threw one nice pass that led to Staggs’ try and put up the bomb for Stagg’s second. Part from that, not much doing but he is a hooker, not a halfback. It showed.

A relatively quiet night by his high standards. Dropped the Steeden twice in the first half and spent an extended period of time on the bench between shifts. Had 95 running metres and made 27 tackles.

One of his three darts from dummy-half cleverly drew a penalty. Made 46 tackles before his scheduled second half exit for James Segeyaro. Very solid but Brisbane need more spark in attack from dummy-half.

The big unit was massive yet again. Just hand him the Paul Morgan Medal for Brisbane’s best-and-fairest now. He had 125 running metres, 24 tackles and six tackle busts – at halftime. By the end of 80 minutes, he had compiled 201 running metres (80 post-contact) and 49 tackles. What a motor. What a player. What a grocery bill.

David Fifita looks to break through. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

David Fifita looks to break through. Picture: Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Continued his stellar form with a bone-crunching 130 running metres and 31 tackles. A quick tap and terrifying charge led to Brisbane’s first try. Scary to think how good he will be once he hits his 20s.

Limited involvement in attack with seven hit-ups for 47 metres. Made some important tackles among his 37.

Not as much of an impact as previous weeks and finished with 59 running metres and 35 tackles when he got the chance to get involved.

One slicing run in the second half reaped 40 metres and showed exactly what Brisbane need more of out of dummy-half.

Part of the Brisbane bench – that as a whole – did not have the punch of previous weeks. Had 52 running metres and 16 tackles.

The ex-Reds flyer got thrown into the action late and had three runs for 28 metres.

Made a handling error coming out of his own territory to put Brisbane under pressure. Another bench player that with went alright without any wow factor off the pine. Had 61 running metres and 18 tackles.

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Rookie Alan

NYC Player
We went into the 2018 finals on a high and were knocked out the first week by a team that limped into the finals like we have this year.

Maybe we're trying their approach to see what happens.
Keep that optimism, we might need that next season too


QCup Player
The only positive I can take into next week is that surely that performance will sting us and we'll look to atone. Who fucking knows though.
Problem is they’ve been rushing up and in on the right side for ages now and almost always get scored on and nothing’s been done about it, it feels utterly hopeless. Unless they change that we won’t win shit regardless of how much more effort we put in! Teams have the book on us. In fact I’m pretty sure I’ve seen the same play by about 6 different teams down our right side, lots of depth with a cut out pass “boom” try time. Easy as you like fucking depressing

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