Titans winger David Mead has conceded that after 145 games in the top grade he may have played his final game for the club.
Off contract at the end of the season and named 18th man for the second week in succession this weekend, Gold Coast's all-time leading try-scorer is starting to come to terms with the fact that he may have to continue his career elsewhere in 2017.
Clubs such as Manly and Newcastle had expressed interest in acquiring Mead's services but his situation has been made even more complicated as he is currently in the process of separating from his previous manager.
After returning from a knee injury in Round 19 Mead produced some outstanding performances at fullback but was the man to miss out when Jarryd Hayne shifted back there last week against the Panthers.
Coach Neil Henry has again preferred Nene Macdonald and Anthony Don over Mead on the wings for the all-important clash with the Cowboys on Saturday night, leaving Mead to ponder what life will look like after the Titans.
"Most likely," Mead told NRL.com when asked whether he had played his last game for the club.
"Obviously you just don't know what's going to happen but I think the weekend would probably be my last if I was to play.
"I'm 18th man so I'll just prepare like I was last week. If one of the boys aren't right I'll be in but the mindset is to prepare like I'm playing.
"I've been grateful since day one of being part of this but I haven't really thought about it too much. Probably will in the coming weeks and let it all soak in but obviously still not sure what's going to happen just yet."
Captain of Papua New Guinea earlier this season, Mead's Titans and Kumuls teammate Nene Macdonald has signed a three-year deal to join St George Illawarra from next season but the 27-year-old is unsure whether that will see him issued a lifeline by Gold Coast.
A member of the inaugural Titans under-20s team in 2008 before making his NRL debut the following season, Mead has scored 65 tries in his 145 NRL appearances and is the joint record holder for most tries in a season with 16 in 2011.
All but ruling out a mooted move to rugby union, Mead said the prospects of winning a premiership and consideration for what is best for his young family will be the determining factors in where he plays in 2017.
"It is pretty important, making sure you look after your family," Mead said.
"Football's not going to last forever so obviously want to make the most of it and make sure your family's looked after.
"Anywhere in the backline wherever I go will still be all right but it would have to be a good club and somewhere I'm going to enjoy. That will probably be the deciding factor.
"You want to give yourself every opportunity to win a premiership so I'll be thinking of a good club and hopefully fit in somewhere in one of their systems."
As for a highlight from his nine years at the club, the speedster from Lismore said that it was hard to go past his maiden NRL appearance against St George Illawarra in Round 13, 2009.
"It's hard to really think back over nine years but my debut will always be a day I'll remember," Mead said.
"The feeling of running out for the first time and playing first grade was probably my most memorable moment."
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