Penrith great Royce Simmons has labelled Panthers forward Isaah Yeo "the best forward I've seen in my time" as the minor premiers search for a third straight premiership.

Yeo has been a key figure in the Panthers' rise under Ivan Cleary, leading Penrith's forward pack as a versatile lock option.

The New South Welshman would make his Origin debut in 2020 and has since been a staple for Brad Fittler on the state stage, while Yeo would also strongly feature for Australia in last year's Rugby League World Cup title-winning run.

The 28-year-old has only bettered his previous campaign's numbers over each of the past four seasons, with 2023 proving to be Yeo's best yet as the Panthers sit one game away from making it three premierships in as many years.

Yeo's role in Penrith's dynasty has gained the plaudits of Simmons, who has gone as far as to say the Dubbo-born forward is arguably the greatest forward of his generation.

Speaking to SEN, Simmons lauded Yeo's versatility and ability to play his best brand at any level.

“I just think he's an outstanding forward,” Simmons said.

“In my opinion, he's the best forward I've seen in my time.

“I've never seen a bloke that played State of Origin in the centres for a fair amount of minutes, then can go play left or right side second row, he can play front row or fill in at lock forward.

“He hardly makes any mistakes, if I see him make a mistake I nearly fall off my feet.

“He's got the ability to carry the ball every week about 170, 180 metres and he's still got the ability to ball play.”

Yeo's Panthers will play the winner of Saturday's preliminary final between Brisbane and New Zealand in the grand final next Sunday.