Dylan Walker was being considered for the Manly's leadership group for next season but now his career at the Sea Eagles is in limbo after he was charged over domestic violence allegations.
The 24-year-old is on bail over two assault charges and must front Manly Local Court next Tuesday.
Coach Des Hasler and CEO Lyall Gorman have told him to stay away from training and "get his head right" before his court appearance.
The longer-term picture is not so clear.
"It's too early to say what the consequences of this are but clearly it's a very serious allegation," Gorman said on Friday, when asked if Walker would be in a Sea Eagles jersey next year.
Gorman was quick to site other incidents of where NRL players continued to play until the legal process was completed – and that can take up to a year or more as cases move through the court system.
''In speaking to the Integrity Unit this morning, it depends on the allegations and what the clear evidence is at a given time," he said.
"There has been precedent in the game where players have been allowed to go the full legal process before sanctions occur ... if the facts and evidence are so strong and so clear action can be taken earlier.
"But any sanctions around this are up to us and the Integrity Unit to resolve. Until we've got the facts and the clear evidence, we can't make that call."
NRL.com understands action has already been taken by Manly by virtue of the fact Walker won't be in the 2019 leadership group even if he keeps his place on the roster.
Manly's immediate concern was not only Walker's welfare but the well-being of his partner, the mother of their six-month-old son.
Hasler and Gorman have made contact with her and offered any help they can.
Manly were starting to turn their fortunes around after settling their coaching saga, by appointing Hasler in October to take over from Trent Barrett who gave his 12 months' notice in July.
The appeal against the NRL's $750,000 fine and $660,00 salary cap penalties was dismissed in September, so the club had been given clarity on what it could do with regards to player recruitment and retention.
Hasler and the NRL squad were back in training and about to welcome back their three incumbent Australian Test players in the Trbojevic brothers Jake and Tom, and skipper Daly Cherry-Evans from their break.
Now Walker, who played four Tests for the Kangaroos in the 2014 Four Nations series, has once again found himself in trouble. He was fined $10,000 by the club in July 2016 after he punched a hole in his apartment front door, fracturing his hand and missing a month of football.
In May this year he missed six weeks with a fractured cheekbone after he and Melbourne centre Curtis Scott traded blows at AAMI Park.
"It's not the first time he's been in trouble. And it gets highlighted more in our game because the profile [of rugby league] is so high," Gorman said.
"So it's not the first time he's been in a bother. It's probably the third time that I'm aware of so clearly there might be some anger issues or other welfare issues that Dylan really needs to take the time and address."
The latest incident resulted in his partner needed medical treatment for cuts to minor her to her shoulder, leg and feet. She did not require hospitalisation.
According to a NSW Police statement, ambulance paramedics were called to a home in Dee Why around 5pm on Thursday and treated a 24-year-old woman on the scene.
Police from the Northern Beaches Police Area Command then arrested a 24-year-old man who was taken to Manly police station.
After four hours of questioning, he was charged and then released on bail to appear in court on December 11.
Gorman said that although the incident happened away from the club, away from the football team, it was still "extraordinarily disappointing" for Sea Eagles fans, sponsors and members.
"You've got to put this in context though. It's a little different to four or five players breaking curfew. This is an individual act outside the club and outside the game," he said.
He was referring to the Gladstone hotel incident in April when several players broke curfew after a game against the Titans, leading to four being fined $1500 while Cherry-Evans copped a $10,000 fine since he was the captain and should have acted appropriately.
"But the game has a zero tolerance for this sort of allegation [violence against women] and so does our club. Still you've got to try and put it into context that this was an individual incident well away from the club and the game."
That still might not be enough to save Walker from further penalty, after the NSW court system is finished with him. He is off contract with Manly in 2019 but he is also a talented representative centre in both attack and defence. Walker won the 2017 Dally M centre of the year award.