Croft's expected exit has Broncos back in halves market

Brisbane will likely target a cheap to mid-tier playmaker as Brodie Croft begins negotiations around an early exit from Red Hill. understands Croft has received several offers from the Super League as the Broncos confirmed he has been given permission to explore his options for 2022.

Next season is the last in Croft's three-year Brisbane deal worth around $450,000, with suitors from the NRL and UK expected to push the Broncos to contribute to his salary next season.

"We are open to Brodie and his agent exploring opportunities beyond the Broncos next year," football manager Ben Ikin confirmed on Wednesday.

Salford is understood to be the leading Super League contenders for Croft's services.

The 24-year-old's preference is to remain in the NRL, or sign a shorter-term Super League deal with an eye to returning to Australia after a season abroad.

Croft will start in the No.7 jersey for the Broncos against Newcastle on Thursday night with veteran Albert Kelly elevated to the 17 at the expense of TC Robati to provide dummy-half back-up.

With Kelly negotiating a one-year extension, plus South Sydney star Adam Reynolds and Wests Tigers utility Billy Walters arriving next season, Croft's slip down the playmaking pecking order has prompted his management to look at other options.

The Broncos have indicated they are happy to honour Croft's 2022 contract.

But should he move on at season's end as expected, coach Kevin Walters will look to replace him with another playmaker in the top 30.

"I haven't thought about 2022 with cap space, to be honest," Walters said leading into the Knights clash.

"Obviously if Brodie Croft did leave we'd have to replace him with someone similar.

"We've got Billy Walters coming into the squad next year who plays in that position but I feel that's an area we can strengthen up a bit as well."


Story first published on by Dan Walsh, Reporter

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Dan Walsh, Reporter