We're going through every NRL club and examining how the shutdown of the competition due to the coronavirus crisis will affect them.
Kicking off with what the lockdown means for the Brisbane Broncos...
With an already long injury list, the positives for the Brisbane Broncos is that they have more time to recover. Corey Oates (ribs), Alex Glenn (hamstring) and Brodie Croft (AC joint) were all expected to return in round three. If the NRL is back up and running by the proposed date of June- July mark, it gives players such as Jordan Kahu (shoulder), Sean O'Sullivan (knee), Keenan Palasia (knee) a chance to play in round three, when they were aiming to get back in action by midseason.
The suspension of the league ultimately came at a bad time for the undefeated Broncos. Brisbane currently fifth on the table after strong displays over the North Queensland Cowboys in round one in which they won 21-28, followed by a round two win over South Sydney 22-18. There is no doubt the break (for however long it is) has ruined some sort of momentum for this team.
The Broncos are fairly sace to see through this financial crisis that the NRL is facing. The Broncos have money in the bank to see this through as they had $25 million in revenue by the end of last year and $14 million in the bank, but that does not mean that the Broncos will face some sort of hardship over the coming months.
There is already one player retiring from the Broncos at the end of this year, as Darius Boyd announced that he will hang up the boots. Meanwhile, young gun David Fifita is off-contract at the end of this season and is eyeing a seven-figure salary on his next deal.
Other players that are off-contract by the end of the 2020 season but with player options are Jack Bird, Andrew McCullough, Anthony Milford, Corey Oates and Jake Turpin. Players that are off contract by the end of the season are Herbie Farnworth, who the Broncos are looking to extenf, Jamil Hopate, Jordan Kahu, Richie Kennar, Rhys Kennedy, Sean O'Sullivan, Izaia Perese and Ilikena Vudogo.
After taking the reins from Wayne Bennett last year on a five-year deal, Anthony Siebold made the Broncos his own with the promotion of several young guns into the team. After a slow start, Seibold's side finished eighth, but suffered their biggest ever finals loss at the hands of Parramatta. No matter, Seibold's contract status means he's in charge of the Broncos for at least the next three years.
How they would have fared in 2020
During the pre-season, the Broncos were widely tipped to play finals football, and there's no reason why they still cant. 2020 figured to be a year of development for this team as they re-jig their squad while remaining competitive.
Where to from here
The Broncos have shown that they have what it takes to play finals, albeit through two games. However, the decision to suspend the NRL though may hurt this team as they were just starting to gel together. Although the same could be said for several other teams in the competition too. As for now, it is up to the players to maintain their training schedule as best as they can.