Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson dismissed suggestions his side took the Warriors lightly after the pre-game scratching of Shaun Johnson, but need to pay homage to rugby league's golden rule.
The Roosters were spanked 30-6 in a resounding upset on Saturday night, with the Warriors defying a 12 per cent win percentage without Johnson as they accounted for the competition heavyweights.
Warriors coach Stephen Kearney went so far as to suggest Johnson being ruled out with a groin strain had the Tricolours preparing for an easy afternoon at the office.
Robinson denied that was the case and was more concerned with his team's diabolical completion rate, which stood at 25 per cent after 25 minutes before finishing at a meagre 59 per cent.
After piling on 68 points in big wins over Canterbury and Newcastle, Robinson accused his side of expecting a similar roll-on to continue against the undefeated Warriors from the outset.
''We showed signs of disrespecting the ball last week but we showed it after building a decent platform and getting some work done and getting some decent combinations going,'' Robinson said.
''We tried continuing on from last week without respecting the rules of rugby league and building the game.
''But the basic rules of rugby league, how we wanted to respect the ball, that concerned me. I don't care who you are, you don't win games until you respect the ball.
Match: Roosters v Warriors
Round 4 -
Venue: Allianz Stadium
- Fox League
- LIVE PASS
''And that's what happened I think after that first try, we didn't complete. For five sets in a row we had errors.''
Despite a bumper off-season recruitment spree that had them installed as red-hot pre-season favourites, the Roosters now sit mid-table with a 2-2 record after a month when they haven't play any top eight teams from 2017.
The Tricolours' 57 errors in four games (with 14 against the Warriors par for their season's course) ranks as the worst in the NRL.
It's a tough turnaround looming as well for Robinson's men, with a trip to Cronulla next Friday after the Sharks knocked off premiers Melbourne.