Roosters’ bold bid for $1m Broncos behemoth
BRONCOS star Tevita Pangai Junior is a free agent - and after his star performance against the Cowboys in round two, rival NRL clubs are sitting up and taking notice.
The 23-year-old signed a one-year deal at the end of 2018 to give himself the best chance of securing a marquee contract for 2020, and it appears to have worked in his favour.
Not only are Brisbane desperate to keep him, rival clubs have the money to tempt him home to New South Wales.
The Roosters are reportedly preparing to make a big play for the burgeoning Origin representative, with his next contract tipped to be close to $1 million per season.
The premiers are expected to lose star halfback Cooper Cronk to retirement at the end of the season, freeing up the salary cap space to lure another marquee signing.
The rapid development of five-eighth Luke Keary also ensures they can afford to bolster their forward pack rather than replace Cronk with another superstar once he retires.
However, Brisbane are believed to be desperate to re-sign Pangai Junior and will begin talks with him in round four, with hopes of striking a deal before State of Origin.
His contract negotiations dragged on throughout the year and into the off-season in 2018 and the club is eager to avoid the circus.
"We've put all of that on hold for the moment," Broncos coach Anthony Seibold said on Wednesday.
"As you guys can appreciate, I've only been here for a short period of time so we haven't had any recruitment or retention meetings since just after Christmas.
"That will happen over the next couple of weeks, we'll have a look at where we're at with things. We have a number of young forwards who are coming off contract or we want to extend.
"If Tevita continues to play like he did on the weekend, we want to keep him around the club. "The challenge for all of our young forwards is to build that consistency. I'm really enjoying coaching Tevita."
Live stream the 2019 NRL Telstra Premiership on KAYO SPORTS. Every game of every round live & anytime on your TV or favourite device. Get your 14 day free trial >