‘He attacked us’: hit man hired to rebuild Broncos’ defence
The Broncos are primed for a major attitude adjustment ahead of Thursday's must-win showdown with the Knights.
Brisbane are set to welcome back skipper Alex Glenn (calf) and fellow backrower Tevita Pangai Jr (suspension) this week, in what will be a massive boost for the underseige side.
With veteran forward Ben Te'o also returning to Brisbane's ranks against Manly last week, and former Broncos hit man Peter Ryan joining the coaching staff over the weekend, the club are doing everything they can to turn around their season and their leaky defence.
According to FoxSports Stats, the Broncos have conceded more points in the final 20 minutes of each half than any other team in the competition.
So far this season, in the 20 minutes before halftime they have been outscored 10-42, while in the final 20 minutes they have been outscored 4-58.
Now lingering in the bottom half of the ladder, Brisbane are desperate for a win as they head into their Round 6 clash against Newcastle.
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And Queensland Origin forward Joe Ofahengaue knows a change on the scoreboard can only come with a change in their defensive attitude.
"We have to look at ourselves," Ofahengaue said of Brisbane's recent defensive record.
"The Eels game and the Roosters game, individually a lot of us were off, including myself. I'm guilty for it too.
"With defence, it's all about attitude. We've built ourselves a good base now with Manly, but we can't get comfortable with that.
"We've got to step it up another level this week and just come with the right attitude again defensively."
The biggest sign Brisbane are determined to work on their defence is the inclusion of Ryan on the coaching staff.
Ryan, who was an assistant coach at the Queensland Reds for the 2019 season, has worked casually with the Broncos for a number of years, but certainly made his presence felt at Brisbane's first training session of the week on Sunday.
"He's aggressive," Ofahengaue said of Ryan.
"He attacked us. He stripped us down to our basics … he's starting there. With anything, you have to strip it down to the basics and Rhino has done that.
"We had a good little 15 minutes with him (on Sunday) but it was helpful."
And it's not just the forwards feeling the impact of Ryan's work, with fullback Jamayne Isaako also confident he will be able to help the entire Broncos squad moving forward.
"Defence has been a major focus within the group the last couple weeks," Isaako said.
"We all know without defence, you don't win games.
"The club has brought in Peter Ryan and he was pretty aggressive in our first hit out with him.
"I'm sure over the next couple of weeks when we get to do a bit more drills with him, he'll definitely help us out."
Originally published as 'He attacked us': Hit man hired to rebuild Broncos' defence