After one of the more tumultuous weeks in the Broncos' history, there was little outgoing coach Anthony Griffin could have done to prevent his side from falling 30-8 against a classy Storm outfit on Friday night.
Brisbane were expected to show some fight in response to their coach getting the chop in favour of Wayne Bennett for the next three seasons, but they couldn’t get themselves into the contest despite some determined defence in the first 40.
Two tries coming from the boot of Cooper Cronk ensured the Storm gained the ascendancy from an early stage, opening up a 12-0 lead in the 14th minute and threatening to score more points off the back of having 13 out of the first 16 sets.
Trailing 12-4 and still within sight of the Storm 10 minutes into the second half, the Broncos' hopes were dashed after Ryan Hoffman's scored his second which put the visitors back in control of the match. Alex Glenn crossed to give the hosts a chance at a comeback, but another two tries capped off a deserved victory for the Storm according to Anthony Griffin.
"They obviously played a lot better than us. We killed ourselves – it wasn't a luck thing – we lost all our composure with the ball and unfortunately you can't do that against [the Storm]," Griffin said.
"I thought defensively we hung in and hung in. They got a soft try from their first kick and the second [try] was a 50/50 call. They needed two kicks to get their points even though they had all the ball and field position."
There wasn't much the Broncos could do other than defend in the first half with the Storm enjoying 56 per cent of first-half possession and an 89 per cent completion rate.
The Broncos shadowed their slow start from last week against the Warriors, but unlike that match, Brisbane could not wipe out there early 12-0 deficit before half-time like they did in their last start.
"I thought at half-time we’d done a really good job against the flow of the game to be still in it," Griffin added.
"We worked our way back into the game and had four or five sets in the first part of the second half and got some field position, but from that point we just fell away.
"At 12-4 it was a really good ball game, but from then on – I think we were six from 12 [sets] to finish the game – you just shoot yourself in the foot for doing that."
The 22-point loss was an uncharacteristic performance from the Broncos according to Griffin, who has seen his side play with much more composure in previous matches this season.
"We've played some brilliant football with the ball and built pressure and found points off the back of being able to screw teams down, but we never put ourselves into a position to do that tonight," he said.
Meanwhile, Broncos co-captain Corey Parker dismissed any concerns that the hectic week they've had leading into the Storm match had any bearing on the result.
"It's been a different week, but that had nothing to do with the way we started the game or how it panned out," Parker said.
"We were against a quality outfit tonight and they were better than us for 80 minutes."