I don't care where we finish: Boyd
The Brisbane Broncos might need a win on Thursday night against the Sydney Roosters to keep their top four hopes alive, but fullback Darius Boyd doesn't care where his side finishes on the ladder.
It's a common thought in rugby league circles that a top four finish is crucial to a team's premiership chances, a fair assessment when you look at the recent history of the competition.
Since the NRL changed the competition to its current eight-team finals series in 1999, no team outside the top four has ever won the premiership.
In fact, no team has won the NRL grand final from outside the top four since the Bulldogs beat Manly in 1995.
But you only have to go two years prior to find another side that accomplished the feat – Brisbane.
The Broncos created their own piece of history in 1993 when they defeated the Dragons in the grand final after finishing in fifth position on the ladder.
Perhaps this is why Boyd is so confident his side can win the competition no matter where they finish - history is on their side, but more importantly, so is momentum.
"Top four isn't even on our radar if I'm honest. We don't really care where we finish," Boyd said.
"It's about how we're playing as a team and the momentum that we are creating. That's been great over the past month but we need to keep improving.
"The Roosters game this week is just another step in the right direction. Our defence has been great over the past few weeks, but I really think our attack against Melbourne was a lot better.
"While we played well against the Bulldogs and got the win, our attack was a bit scratchy. We went around them too much. But we came up with a good game plan against Melbourne and I think we really executed it well."
The win over the Storm was Brisbane's fourth in a row and it continued a huge turnaround over the past month of football.
The Broncos looked done earlier in the season, conceding an average of just less than 31 points per game between Rounds 13 – 21, and losing five from seven in the process.
But just over four weeks ago something changed in the inner sanctum of the Broncos, and Brisbane have responded, with Wayne Bennett's men only conceding around 12 points per game between Rounds 22 – 25.
Boyd has the best view in the house when it comes to Brisbane's defensive line and he has noticed a big difference over the past four weeks.
"I've noticed an increase in confidence in the defensive line," he said.
"We made a few errors against Melbourne when we were coming out of our own end and that wasn't ideal. But we defended most of them.
"Getting that trust and belief back is huge. It's been building over the last month and I think it was right up there with some of our best when we played the Storm."