MCGUIRE’S STRAPPING STAND- INS
WITH one unfortunate snap of Josh McGuire’s achilles tendon, the Broncos had to find a missing 126 run metres and 29 tackles a game for the rest of their premiership drive.
Those were the season average statistics for McGuire before his injury on June 26, which, in the way football clubs exist to pick up the pieces and move on, offered fresh opportunity to Jarrod Wallace and Mitchell Dodds.
While Sam Thaiday has
been moved to start in the middle in Brisbane’s two wins since the loss of McGuire, Dodds received 39 minutes of action, 10 minutes more than his season average, off the bench in the grinding win over Canterbury two weeks ago.
“Everyone knows they have to pick up their game because Josh gets through a lot of work and makes a lot of metres,’’ Dodds said as he prepared for a fifth straight mission off the bench in tomorrow night’s home clash with Gold Coast.
Dodds, a member of Brisbane’s 2008 under- 20s side which groomed McGuire, Ben Hunt and Alex Glenn, has played 66 NRL games in a career interrupted by an ACL rupture which cost him his 2014 season.
“That time out of the game, you wonder if you’ve still got it in you,’’ he said. “I’m glad it’s all past and I’m loving playing again.
“I’m hoping to get resigned at the end of the year but that’s the game we’re in.’’
Both Dodds and Wallace train and play at the moment with heavily strapped knees, which is what can happen for props when football seasons get to July.
“We are held together by tape,’’ Dodds said.
Wallace has seen on average 35 minutes in a season of progress, compared to McGuire’s average of 50 minutes a game, and ran for 80m and 82m in his two games since McGuire’s injury.
“Losing Josh for the season, there was going to be no quick fix,’’ Corey Parker said.
“Those are the players we have got and we needed players to step up. Jarrod has the ability to do that.’’
IN SPOTLIGHT: Jarrod Wallace and Mitchell Dodds have both been called upon to step up for the Broncos.