Anthony Milford, Alex Glenn, Brodie Croft and Patrick Carrigan are all chances for the Brisbane Broncos captaincy.
Anthony Milford, Alex Glenn, Brodie Croft and Patrick Carrigan are all chances for the Brisbane Broncos captaincy.

Legend anoints new captain as Glenn faces axe

The battle to captain the Broncos has heated up after former skipper Sam Thaiday urged coach Kevin Walters to look to the future and deliver the leadership duties to Pat Carrigan.

Walters is weighing up axing incumbent skipper Alex Glenn and installing a new leadership structure at Red Hill after the Broncos collected this year's wooden spoon.

Five-eighth Anthony Milford is in contention to replace Glenn as skipper but there are slim pickings at the Broncos when it comes to standout captaincy candidates.

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Carrigan, 22, captained the Broncos for much of the 2020 season, both in a co-captaincy arrangement with halfback Brodie Croft and solely as Glenn spent much of the year injured.

Former coach Anthony Seibold was an unabashed fan of Carrigan's, regularly lauding the physiotherapy student who was a member of Brisbane's leadership group and shared the 2020 Paul Morgan Medal with Payne Haas.

Thaiday, who retired in 2018, played 304 games for the Broncos and captained the club from 2012-13.

He said Walters should invest in Carrigan given he had the potential to captain the Broncos for a decade.

Sam Thaiday captained the Broncos from 2012-13. Picture: Darren England
Sam Thaiday captained the Broncos from 2012-13. Picture: Darren England

"There is a part of me which would love to bite the bullet and go with youth, I'd love to see Patrick Carrigan do it and develop in that space," Thaiday said.

"Hopefully Kevvie can put some guys from outside around him to mentor him, depending on the bubble situation.

"He has shown he can lead by example. He is a smart and sophisticated man who speaks well and presents well to the media.

"I'm happy to see Kevvie bite the bullet and go for youth. He might be a 10-year captain.

"I'd like to land in that direction. He could be a great captain with some great mentors around him.

"That's what Kevvie could do, bring a bit of harmony back between past and present.

"The biggest thing for the Broncos at the moment is winning some fans back. We're going to have to really push and promote the harmony that Kevvie is going to bring.

"It's going to be tough next year. It's going to be an uphill battle getting people back onside."

Pat Carrigan shared the Broncos’ player of the year award with Payne Haas. (Photo by Matt Roberts/Getty Images)
Pat Carrigan shared the Broncos’ player of the year award with Payne Haas. (Photo by Matt Roberts/Getty Images)

Carrigan made 19 appearances for the Broncos in 2020, taking his career tally to 38, and missed only one game through suspension.

His workhorse performances earned him selection in Queensland's 27-man squad for next month's State of Origin series.

Carrigan trained in Maroons colours on the Gold Coast on Wednesday alongside Titans quartet AJ Brimson, Jai Arrow, Moeaki Fotuaika and Phil Sami and said he would be honoured to captain the Broncos full-time.

"Leadership is something I try to do regardless of whether I've got a 'C' next to my name or not," he said.

"It doesn't really change the way I play or how I compete.

"Kevvie will look at that from a Broncos point of view. Whatever he goes with I will be 100 per cent on-board with.

"Kevvie has got to make some decisions around everything. Whatever that is, I'm excited for the new year once we get through this little block."

Carrigan is on the cusp of Queensland's best 17 for Game One of the series in Adelaide on November 4.

He played under-18s and 20s for the Maroons and said he wouldn't let down Queensland coach Wayne Bennett if given an opportunity in the Origin arena.

"There's been a lot of players to step into this arena and do their job," he said.

"Whoever gets the opportunity will do a job for Wayne. That's all he's looking for. Hopefully that results in a good series.

"I play my footy pretty straight up and down. I like to get through a bit of work and do my job that way. Hopefully it's suited to Origin footy.

"If I get the chance I'd love to get out there, compete and play with these guys." 


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