North Queensland Cowboys Scrimmage and Fan Day In Ayr
AYR, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 13: Cowboys coach Todd Payten looks on during a North Queensland Cowboys Scrimmage game against the Townsville Blackhawks at Rugby Park on February 13, 2021 in Ayr, Australia. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

Todd Payten has become the newest coach to back the NRL's new concussion protocols but insists that he is wary of changes to tackling rules.

Payten has warned against the NRL in forcing changes to its tackling rules and is determined that the game must stay true to rugby league.

His adamance comes after the Rugby Football Union voted to ban tackles above the waist for all union matches apart from the elite level of rugby union.

"What I'm concerned or wary of is in time if we change and manipulate the rules or laws around tackling," Payten said on Friday.

"I don't want to see that happen. I want us to stay as rugby league and we can try and protect the players as much as we can once the concussion has occurred."

Despite this, Payten joins a number of coaches who back the NRL's new concussion protocols which will see players stood down for 11 days if they fail their HIA.

Announced this week, Jack Murchie and Hame Sele became the first two players affected by these rules. Both players will miss out on their Round 4 matches for their respective clubs.

"With all the evidence that's come to light over the recent years, I think it's a smart move," Payten continued.