A leading candidate for the NSW Blues head coaching role, Ricky Stuart, has reportedly withdrawn his name out of contention for the job.

The Canberra Raiders coach was the leading candidate to take over Brad Fittler's role as the coach of the NSW Blues after the latter announced his surprise departure from the role.

The NSWRL have had a strong no-head coach policy in recent times but are looking to wind the role of Origin coach back to part-time, encompassing fewer areas across the organisation.

Ricky Stuart was one of the leading frontrunners for the job, but it is now understood by News Corp that the Canberra Raiders roster situation is weighing heavily on Stuart taking on the role of NSW Blues coach.

The Canberra Raiders managed to finish in the top-eight this season but will lose star players Jack Wighton (South Sydney Rabbitohs) and Jarrod Croker (retirement) for next season, along with starting playmaker Matt Frawley (Leeds Rhinos) while Brad Schneider and Semi Valemei also left earlier in the season.

Star international duo Elliot Whitehead (England) and Jordan Rapana (New Zealand) are also likely coming into their final rugby league season.

The decision from Stuart has put Laurie Daley into the driver's seat to return as the NSW Blues coach.

“I've said all along I'm always happy to help where I can and I was prepared to help Freddy and it surprised me when Freddy withdrew because I would have loved to have been a part of him helping New South Wales,” Daley said on Sky Sports Radio's ‘Big Sports Breakfast' on Tuesday morning..

“I've said along if people thought I could help out I would help out in any role. Coach could be an option, being a mentor, being in a leadership role, whatever it may be. I'm always happy to help where I can.”

Other names that have been mentioned include Manly Sea Eagles assistant Michael Ennis, Sydney Roosters assistant Matt King and Melbourne Storm assistant Jason Ryles, who turned down the Dragons head coaching role earlier this year.

Despite Stuart withdrawing from consideration, it is unknown whether Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy is still interested in putting his name forward for the NSW Blues job.