News Limited is reporting that some bookmakers have installed the Brisbane Broncos as the favourites to win the 2015 premiership.
Keeping in mind that it is good marketing for a bookmaker to toss something up like this and have it reported by the press, but it does make me wonder how people think the Broncos will perform next season.
In 2014 the Broncos aren’t playing too bad. They look like a team that is building towards being a true premiership threat over the next few years.
When looking towards 2015 the first thing you have to think about is the salary cap investigation the club is undertaking right now. It is conceivable that the Broncos could start next season with at least a points deduction that would affect where they finished on the NRL ladder.
If the investigation runs into next season and huge issues are uncovered, you could find the Broncos are excluded from the NRL finals next season as the Melbourne Storm were a few years ago. We don’t know how any of this will play out though, so for now, lets look past all of this.
There are a few issues with their squad. You have to wonder how Hoffman, Barba and Milford will work in the same team. The likely return of Darius Boyd just adds more questions. While any one of those four players would be great to have as your clubs number one fullback, there just doesn’t seem any way that the Broncos could have all of them in the same back line and working well together.
Then you have the looming question as to whether the Broncos will commit to having Ben Hunt as their halfback or if they will go all out to try and sign Daly Cherry-Evans.
When Wayne Bennett switches clubs bookmakers are quick to make that club favourites for the title. As good of a coach as Wayne Bennett is though, it isn’t just like flipping a switch.
Bennett will want to return to the Broncos and make the team his own. That will require players to leave the club, others to be signed, and time for the team to gel under a new coach.
Without Bennett returning I would have expected the Broncos to improve next season. Bennett returns on a massive coaching contract with complete control of the club. He would want to have the team firing on all cylinders next season because for the way the Broncos have committed to Waynes World…success needs to be almost immediate.
If you ask me, I’d want to give Bennett 2015 to change the club and the lineup to make it his. I think they will go well, but I think 2016 will be the year the Broncos will be primed for a true premiership run.
Now watch them go and win the 2014 Grand Final…