CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 18: Josh Papalii of the Raiders is tackled during the round two NRL match between the Canberra Raiders and the Newcastle Knights at GIO Stadium on March 18, 2018 in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

Canberra are searching for answers following the departure of front-row pair Shannon Boyd and Junior Paulo, but will wait for the NRL to announce it’s long-term interchange cap.

Raiders recruitment boss Peter Mullholland has said he does not want to splash out big money on a prop until the club is aware of what the interchange rotations are moving forward.

The NRL is considering dropping the interchange limit from eight to six per team each game, which may lower the value of big men who play limited minutes.

Canberra has lost big boppers Boyd to Gold Coast and Paulo to Parramatta for 2019, leaving the club depleted of pop stocks.

“No, we’re not in a hurry (to sign a prop),” Mullholland told Fox Sports.

“As far as props go, there will be a few. You never know what clubs might come under a bit of duress with salary cap, you just don’t know.

“If you put all your eggs in one basket too early you might get bitten.”

Mullholland has said teams may be hesitant to sign a player who will take up two rotations on their bench and spend limited time on the field.

“I’m not sure the big blokes are where the future is either,” Mullholland said.

“It will be 12 months before (the change) happens but I think sooner or later it will come down, the game will introduce something that will introduce fatigue.

“You saw it the other night with the two tries — James Roberts’ try and the Jamayne Isaako try — I know they will play it down but the fatigue factor had set in and those young blokes came to the fore.

“I think sooner or later that will happen.”

Second-row Josh Papalii has agreed to a contract extension with the team, giving Canberra some forward depth. Veteran Sia Soliola is also expected to sign a new year deal soon, Aiden Sezer is supposedly locked away, while talks are ongoing with out-of-contract five-eighth Blake Austin.

“We’ve got a couple of good young blokes … Liam Knight is there, Charlie Gubb played the other day, Dunamis Lui,” Mulholland said.

Additionally, the Raiders are keen on Super League utility forward John Bateman, who is good friends with Elliott Whitehead.

 

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