Robinson's warning for below-par Broncos
Vanquished Roosters coach Trent Robinson has no doubt the Broncos can go on to win the 2016 Telstra Premiership but says they need to be more like the team that ambushed the Storm last week than the one that snuck home on Thursday night.
Two quick tries against the run of play in the final seven minutes of the first half allowed Brisbane to turn a 14-point deficit into just a two-point margin at the break before keeping the Roosters scoreless in the second half for a 24-14 win at Suncorp Stadium.
For at least 24 hours last year's runners up will occupy fourth position on the table but must await the results of the other games this weekend before knowing who, when and where they will be playing in Week One of the Finals Series.
The Roosters belied their lowly position on the table to completely dominate the opening 30 minutes of their final game of the season before injuries and the inexperience throughout their squad consigned the minor premiers of the past three seasons to a dismal record of six wins and 18 losses.
But with a completion rate of less than 60 per cent in the first half and a total of 12 errors to the Roosters' 13, Robinson said they will need to be significantly better in the weeks to come.
"They can definitely can win the comp," Robinson said.
"When you jump someone like they did against Melbourne… that was impressive last week. Everyone must have thought, 'They're back and they're coming' but you've got to hold a standard.
"You've got to make sure you do that week in, week out and I think they'll have to improve on tonight's performance.
"We're not a top team, we haven't deserved to be a top team and whoever they play next week, they'll have to jump up a gear again I'd say."
After a performance against Melbourne a week prior where their energy and intent was at a semi-final standard, the Broncos appeared off the pace in what was billed as captain Corey Parker's farewell to Suncorp Stadium.
A team with nothing to play for regularly beat them to the punch but Robinson did pay credit to Brisbane's defensive energy in the latter stages of the match that helped to turn the screws on a young Roosters team.
The likes of Josh McGuire, Adam Blair, Parker and Sam Thaiday got up quick on the Roosters forwards but captain Jake Friend also pointed to the Storm game as the standard the Broncos need to reach come finals time.
"They're one of the better packs in the comp and their position shows that," Friend said.
"I watched them against Melbourne the other week and they were really impressive.
"They were tough tonight but if they can play like they did last week they're a big threat in the finals series."
Incredibly, it's the first time in Robinson's tenure as head coach that the Roosters haven't finished the regular season on top of the table but rather than booking a long holiday, the 2013 premiership-winning coach will be watching the best teams of 2016 do battle.
"It hurts, but I think it's important to watch them," Robinson said of missing the finals.
"If we want to get there again, the best footy this year will be in the next four weeks so I need to watch them.
"It doesn't mean it won't hurt watching them but I'll be there."
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