I had originally planned to submit this late last week but truthfully I was sick of talking about coaches. With the finals series just two weeks away we're not talking about Slater, Tedesco, and Cook but instead Bennett, Griffin and McGregor.
That said, I see the sacking of Anthony Griffin two weeks back by the Penrith Panthers as a genuine opportunity for the club to move forward.
Of course, as mentioned previously, I found the timing to be ridiculous and absolutely detrimental to the Panthers' final charge but that's an argument that has been discussed into oblivion.
I want to discuss the future of the Panthers coaching role, something that has been the topic of fierce discussion across social media over the past ten days.
As recently as this weekend we had two coaches linked to the Panthers hot seat; Wayne Bennett and Trent Barrett.
Barrett looks on his way out of Manly for a variety of reasons. The most obvious being the fact that Manly is a complete mess right now in terms of salary cap and off-field setup. I don't mean that as a stab to Manly fans, it's just how the club looks right now from the outside.
Meanwhile, despite ridiculously scripted press conferences suggesting otherwise, Bennett's tenure as the mentor of the Broncos looks to be coming to an end.
Last week the Broncos came out to suggest that Bennett would see out 2019 but there is genuine talk he will be removed beforehand. I guess we'll see.
Either way, I don't want to see either Barrett nor Bennett take charge of the Panthers for the simple reason they've both been tried and tested and I don't have a whole lot of faith in either right now.
That's not to say they're bad coaches. Wayne Bennett has a cupboard full of premiership medals while Barrett has done pretty well in trying circumstances.
But neither is setting the world on fire right now despite some pretty stacked rosters.
This Panthers side is one about to enter a premiership window. They could actually be in that very window right now. This is an opportunity not to be missed ... which may hurt my argument a bit here, but I ask, I beg, I plead with Gus Gould and the Panthers to take a risk.
Look outside the usual recycled coaches merry-go-round and appoint a new, fresh, hungry, young coach with new ideas.
If you're after proof that I'm not totally insane look no further than the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
The 2017 Bunnies were awful. Terrible. Painful to watch.
Fast forward to the Anthony Seibold-coached Rabbits and they're arguably the most attractive side to watch in the competition on their day. They're also firmly entrenched in the top four and a genuine title change.
There is no chance in the world they'd be sitting in their current position if Michael Maguire was still in the red and green hot seat.
Damien Cook is a completely different player and a potential Dally M winner. Adam Reynolds is playing better football than he did in years gone by. Alex Johnston looks far more comfortable at fullback under the new game plan.
Of course, the Panthers would have to get it right re their new coach like the Bunnies did, but I'll groan and roll my eyes if the Panthers go to a recently sacked coach.
Bellamy and Flanagan are probably the only currently employed two coaches I'd be chasing if I had unlimited funds and was in Gould's position. Otherwise, I'd be looking elsewhere.
Who wouldn't love to see the Walker brothers take the post at the foot of the mountains? Can you imagine the mouth watering football they would encourage the likes of Cleary, Dylan Edwards and Kikau to play? Sign me up.
Whether that brand of football that made the Jets the most watchable rugby league side in the game a few years ago would work at an NRL level is questionable, but my word it would be fun.
When I ask the Panthers to take a punt I don't mean it has to be on a first-time coach. Cameron Ciraldo looks out of his depth at this level. He's doing his best in ridiculous circumstances but he's at massive odds to assume the role full time. Nor should he.
Geoff Toovey is a name that has recently been linked back to the Sea Eagles. Despite the fact the club made a mistake in removing him in the past, Tooves has been out of the position long enough to have stood back, observed and adjusted his coaching style accordingly.
It would be a gamble to appoint Toovey over Bennett, but it brings with it an upside that a man who hasn't been able to deliver a premiership to the most heavily resourced club in the NRL since his return.
I'd love to hear from the Panthers fans whether they'd rather see an established yet recently unsuccessful coach or if they'd back Gould and co. taking a punt on a fresh-faced appointment.
For mine, the Panthers need to look past the same band of coaches that have moved from club to club and look for a Seibold approach.
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