Ferguson ready to accept No.1 challenge
He finished the 2015 season as arguably the most devastating centre in the game but Blake Ferguson says he is now ready for a new challenge and to make the Roosters fullback position his own.
Already touted as a success as a custodian by Blues fullback and good friend Josh Dugan, Ferguson has just begun a pre-season that will literally shape whether he has what it takes for the additional workload that comes with playing at the back.
Club legend Anthony Minichiello led the club to the Telstra Premiership in 2013 and last season Roger Tuivasa-Sheck – in his first full season at fullback – was named the Dally M Fullback of the Year.
Aerobically it's the most demanding position in the game today but in an extensive interview on Denan Kemp's The Locker Room podcast the 25-year-old said he is prepared to do whatever is best for the team.
"That's one thing that I've got to work on if I am going to play at the back," Ferguson said of the fitness necessary to make the transition.
"I'd love to go there and it's another challenge for me.
"I've played centre for a lot of years now and feel real comfortable there and it would be good to have an opportunity.
"It just depends where the club needs me to play and where 'Robbo' (Roosters coach Trent Robinson) wants me to play.
"I'll do what's best for the club."
Handed a lifeline by the Roosters after a string of off-field indiscretions, Ferguson went to score 10 tries in 19 games for the club in 2015 and was rewarded in August with a two-year contract extension.
Away from football he and partner Bianca have recently welcomed a young son, Harlo, into the world and he credited that off-field stability for his return to top level rugby league after he was deregistered for a period of 17 months.
"If you've got something off the field that keeps you positive because as a footy player you do get down," Ferguson told The Locker Room.
"Even if you're winning you do get down on certain things during the day that go on in your mind but when I've got my partner at home that helps me out a lot.
"I feel most comfortable when I'm on the footy field, it comes naturally. I've been playing it for 21 years so it's the most natural thing I know and off the field is probably the hardest for me.
"It's been well documented where I've played up off the field but I've finally got all that together and everything's going up from here."