The Cronulla Sharks may have signed Cameron McInnes and Queensland Cup star Jayden Berrell with the ability to play in the dummy half position, but that doesn't mean they have plans to let Blayke Brailey go.

The Sharks made a clear decision a number of years ago when they allowed Jayden Brailey to depart for the Newcastle Knights, with the club favouring his younger brother Blayke.

Since then, he has become a focal point of the Sharks' 17, barely missing a game, defending solidly and helping the club's attack.

His performances have been a little underwhelming in patches though, and it had been thought that the signings of McInnes and Berrell - particularly given McInnes won't play lock ahead of Dale Finucane - was a sign the club were less than impressed with Brailey.

But, with The Daily Telegraph reporting that the club have offered the younger Brailey brother a three-year contract extension, those rumours will be squashed rapidly.

Brailey is off-contract at the end of 2022, but it's understood Craig Fitzgibbon has made a significant play to keep Brailey at the club long-term.

There is a genuine hooking shortage across the NRL, and 2022 shapes as moving time for a chunk of the game's elite, with Brandon Smith, Reed Mahoney, Apisai Koroisau and Josh Hodgson all off-contract at the end of 2022, as well as other number nines including Mitchell Kenny, Jake Turpin, Tom Starling, Reuben Cotter, Freddy Lussick and the rapidly improving Wayde Egan.

All that means the Sharks are desperate to not end up in the middle of a bidding war for Brailey, or be needing to consider their options for a different number nine, particularly given the way the club pinned their future hopes on the youngster.

The 23-year-old played every game of the 2021 season, and only missed four in the season before, with negotiations believed to be on-going.

It's understood Brailey's preference is to remain with the Sharks long-term.

A three-year extension would see him remain at the club until the end of 2025.