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Titans prop Ryan James.

As the Gold Coast prepare to field one of the most imposing forward packs in their short history, captain Ryan James has pinpointed a key area where they can learn from the Sydney Roosters in their bid to return to the finals.

James spoke to about the Roosters' premiership-winning pack of 2013 that boasted forwards who played off the back of each other and were relentless in their charges into the defensive line.

That pack had a fear factor about it that James said the Titans were keen to acquire.

"It is all about actions. You look at the Roosters pack of five or six years ago and they'd have [Jared Waerea] Hargreaves coming at you and then Sam Moa and Sonny Bill Williams would hit it up," James said.

"They were one of those forwards packs that would keep coming at you in waves.

"Canberra had it when they had [Shannon Boyd] Boydy and [Junior] Paulo and the big boppers to start the game but you knew the Raiders pack would fatigue after a while.

"That Roosters pack would keep coming. That is why they are one of the great clubs, they find that balance of big middle players and edge guys that can keep going through.

Titans prop Shannon Boyd.
Titans prop Shannon Boyd. ©Scott Davis/NRL Photos

"We probably aren't there yet but when you look at our pack on paper we are right up there."

James said the acquisition of former Raider Boyd would give the Titans an extra dimension and an imposing middle forward for the rest of the team to feed off from the opening whistle.

"It will definitely be about starting fast this year because last year we were letting teams get a lead and then trying to fight back. That is where the addition of big Shannon Boyd comes in," he said.

"He is a real big body at 130 kilos and you'd hate tackling him when he was at Canberra, where they had big boy after big boy coming at you.

"We've never really had that size in the past except for Dave Taylor who played more on an edge.

"Me, J-Wal [Jarrod Wallace], Jai Arrow, Kevvie Proctor and Carty [Bryce Cartwright] need to run hard and play off the back of him because nine times out of 10 Boydy is going to get you a quick play the ball and people like Nathan Peats, Mitch Rein and Tyrone Peachey can make the most of it if we are all working together."

Titans centre Tyrone Peachey playing in the 2019 All Stars game.
Titans centre Tyrone Peachey playing in the 2019 All Stars game. ©Nathan Hopkins/NRL Photos

As skipper, James said he was heartened for the year ahead by what he saw last year from three of the club's outstanding young forwards.

"It was great to see what Jai  Arrow did right from the start of the year," James said.

"He was a kid that used to play off the bench and then came to us and played with broken ribs and kept powering on, then made the Origin team for the Maroons and started in the front-row at 90-odd kilos.

"We have also got players who can come on bring impact like Moeaki [Fotuaika] and [Keegan] Hipgrave who had great years for us last year."


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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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