He has become the unwitting prize in a tug-of-war developing between two fierce rivals but Gold Coast Titans half Ashley Taylor insists he won't be rushed into making a decision on his future.
Taylor could be absent from the Titans' Round 23 meeting with the Dragons at UOW Jubilee Oval on Saturday due to a knee injury he suffered in the humiliating 54-0 defeat inflicted by his former club Brisbane on Saturday night, having not missed a game to date in his second season in the NRL.
In the lead-up to the south-east Queensland derby Broncos coach Wayne Bennett aired his interest in luring Taylor back to Red Hill when his current contract with the Titans expires at the end of 2018 to which the Titans countered by declaring they would do everything in their power to ensure he stays on the Gold Coast long term.
The Titans have already begun discussions with Taylor and his management about extending his tenure at Parkwood but in what could be an ominous sign for his current club the 22-year-old said he was in no rush to make a decision on where he will be playing after next season.
If the Titans are unable to lock Taylor away prior to the start of pre-season training in November he will be free to begin negotiating with other clubs on the open market and a return to the club that signed him as a teenager out of Toowoomba may be tempting.
 Taylor Ashley - Titans
Despite his youthfulness Taylor is a comfortable and confident performer with the media and even in the aftermath of the Titans' worst loss in the club's history was giving with his time and honest in his responses.
He understands the machinations of modern media when it comes to the storylines that generate the headlines each week but said that he doesn't feel any external pressure from the chatter or need to rush into such an important decision regarding his future.
"I don't let that stuff get to me," Taylor said of the back and forth between the Broncos and Titans last week. "No matter what's been said in the media, whether it's me not playing the best or if I'm playing my best and looking to sign a big contract and stuff.
"That's just the way the media works, people trying to get their story.
"When people ask me, I'm still signed here next year, that's the biggest thing. I've still got my future solved for another year and I don't need to rush into anything.
"That doesn't get to my mind. I'm more worried about the team and my job with this team.
"I just want to play good footy and play the best for the Titans that I can."
A week after their finals hopes were extinguished by a team sitting only one rung above the bottom of the ladder the Titans competed for the first 20 minutes but wilted under the physical dominance established by the Broncos across the park.
With a month of football to somehow make amends to their fans the Titans have clashes with the Dragons, Eels and Roosters coming up and Taylor said their motivation has to be to cause havoc for those teams still in finals contention.
"We just need to keep competing for the rest of the year," said Taylor, who came off with 18 minutes to play against the Broncos.
"We've obviously got nothing to lose now so we've just got to go out every week and try and win games and try and put a dint in the competition where we can.
"Knock off some big teams and find some consistency heading into the back-end of the season and into next year."