Broncos skipper Alex Glenn has urged his teammates to completely escape football for nine days and find their pride for the club as coach Kevin Walters puts a rocket through the joint as part of a review to rebuild Brisbane into an NRL powerhouse.
Walters and new CEO Dave Donaghy have kicked off a sweeping overhaul of the Broncos with every position under the microscope after Brisbane slumped to their sixth loss in their past seven games where they’ve conceded 176 points in just four weeks.
Brisbane’s 46-0 loss to South Sydney on Thursday night was the sixth time in 15 games the Broncos have conceded 40 points or more and the bloodletting has begun Tevita Pangai jnr joining Matt Lodge in being told they can find a new club next season.
Recruitment chief Peter Nolan and head of performance Andrew Croll have also been informed by the club their tenures at Brisbane will be coming to an end as the football department undergoes structural changes.
Donaghy said: “Change is always challenging and this is certainly no exception, especially given the people impacted.
"I’d like to acknowledge the professionalism and significant contributions of both Peter and Andrew over many years and I wish them well for the future.”
More big-name players and hefty contracts are set to be offloaded.
While he supports the Broncos undertaking a wide-ranging review, Glenn's message to the players was to simply shut off the football world during the Origin bye break so they can return ready to go for their July 4 clash with Cronulla at Suncorp Stadium.
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"After Kevvie spoke to the team I said to the boys that it’s really important this bye week you really get away from football, mentally freshen up and when you come back in you’re ready to do a job and we finish the season strong," Glenn said.
"We have to start showing some pride for the jersey.
"I am [hurting], I’ve been here at this club for over a decade and this jersey means so much to me and we’re getting beaten by 40-plus points every week, bro. That hurts, man.
"It’s not in the Broncos' DNA. That is the shattering part, to be honest.
"You’d be stupid if you weren’t thinking this [review] was going to happen. It’s reality, bro. Something has to change. The review, it will be a good thing.
"There will be some tough calls to make and I’m glad I’m not the one that has to make that but the reality is there has to be changes done.
"It has to happen, it’s been two or three years now. We’re sitting at the other end of the table that we’re not used to.
"Our club has always been top-four contenders every single year and it’s just backflipped now and we’re on the other side. In order to make changes maybe you do have to review the club."
Pangai candid about his future
Glenn was part of the last truly competitive Broncos side, the 2015 outfit that was 10 seconds from the NRL premiership only to lose to the Cowboys in extra time.
The difference in six years is simple.
"Attitude, to be honest," Glenn said.
"It’s hard, man. I think we need some more brutal honesty with each other, everyone is just trying to sugar-coat everything.
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"The hardest thing for us is when you’re losing, you’re under the pump, you’re looking at every single thing and trying to fix everything, maybe this will work, maybe this will and sometimes you just dig yourself even deeper in a hole
"Football is simple, it’s a team sport and when your team is gelling things will come easier.
"It’s just not gelling at the moment, we say all the right things in meetings then we go out there and the actions don’t back it up.
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"That is what shatters me the most. I like to lead through my actions, you’re trying to do your job and someone else isn’t doing theirs so you try to do that as well and we’re just getting deeper and deeper into a hole.
"The positive is we’ve got a bye, take that nine days to get away from footy, go see family, refresh so when we come in I want all our boys to be jumping up like ‘lets go’, not have that energy like ‘here we go again.’ I don’t want that."
Glenn said he felt for Pangai, who was called into the club on his day off during the week to be told he was no longer wanted and they would happily release him if he found a new deal elsewhere.
Pangai has all the potential in the world, but his time at the Broncos has been a swinging pendulum between on-field brilliance, brain explosions and off-field issues.
Glenn said he was surprised Pangai was tapped on the shoulder given he'd seemed to have found his happy place in 2021.
"I don’t know when he found out this was going to happen but I don’t know what to say," Glenn said.
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"It’s a tough industry this business and it’s very cut-throat. I get along with Tevita very well and he is a future star of this game, he has been working really hard the last two or three months.
"I’ve been talking to him about his routine and he is in a morning routine, speaking to the right people about constantly being in good habits to be consistent every week and I thought he has been doing that.
"His weight is under control which was one of his hardest things to deal with. He is a guy that his body weight can fluctuate over a weekend but I thought consistently he was doing really good so that is a hard pill to swallow."