The Broncos are reportedly discussing a bombshell double raid on Knights superstar Kalyn Ponga and Eels star Mitchell Moses.
In a swoop that would be among the biggest ever seen in the NRL, the Broncos roster has been plunged further into disarray with news emerging Tuesday night that the club is considering a roster clean out to create space for a potential play at Ponga and Moses.
The extraordinary double raid comes as reports emerged the Broncos are also keeping their eyes on Manly star Daly Cherry-Evans and Sharks playmaker Shaun Johnson.
The potential Broncos-Ponga link would result in the Queensland State of Origin star receiving “money never seen before” in the NRL, according to speculation.
Kevin Walters has failed to pull the club out of its downwards spiral since taking over as coach and the club’s playmaking combinations have been a complete mess with Brodie Croft, Anthony Milford and Tom Dearden all struggling.
Kalyn Ponga would be the biggest name in rugby league.Source:Getty Images
While Milford was dropped to reserve grade earlier this month, Walters backflipped on his original decision when announcing his team for Round 8, which saw Milford promoted and both Croft and Dearden dropped following the club’s ugly loss to Parramatta.
The switches came after Dearden announced his decision to join the Cowboys from the start of the 2022 season — and with Milford reportedly facing the prospect of failing to receive a contract extension offer from the Broncos.
Milford’s rich deal expires at the end of 2021.
The uncertainty surrounding the Broncos future was plunged deeper into mystery when it was revealed star forward Matt Lodge has also been given permission to negotiate with rival clubs, despite having a long term deal to the end of 2024 with the club.
It was first reported in December the Broncos would be willing to pay up to $400,000 per season if a rival club was prepared to take on the reported $2.4 million remaining on the final three years of Lodges’ contract.
Mitchell Moses has a few weeks to decide if he wants to stay at Parramatta.Source:Getty Images
Daly Cherry-Evans is on the Broncos’ radar despite still having a long-term contract with Manly.Source:Getty Images
NRL 360 host Paul Kent told Fox League Tuesday the Broncos plan to use the money cleared up by Lodge’s departure and add it to their pool of salary cap space available to lure a star halfback to the club.
It leaves Milford already outside the club’s plans for the future.
Kent and The Australian’s Brent Read told Fox League on Tuesday night the Broncos are discussing fairytale combinations between Moses, Ponga, Johnson and Daly Cherry-Evans.
The club has already tabled a rich deal for Kotoni Staggs and the club reportedly sees the centre as the club’s future five-eighth.
“I think they have to go and find ways of getting cap to go into the market to find a halfback,” The Daily Telegraph’s Paul Kent told NRL360 on Fox League.
“They are speaking to Mitchell Moses, he’s got until Round 10 to call up the option with Parramatta.
“They’re already in negotiations with him. Shaun Johnson at Cronulla has been offered one year at $400,000 he’ll be looking for more than that.
The Broncos have already given up in 2021.Source:Getty Images
“Then there’s Adam Reynolds who will probably end up at Cronulla and then you’ve got Daly Cherry-Evans who has come out and told his teammates he’s not going anywhere but the Broncos are certainly getting ready to move in.”
Read said he believed the Broncos were discussing a move for Kalyn Ponga.
The Broncos have changed fullbacks at a rate of knots and Read told NRL360 that Ponga’s value could skyrocket with a move to Brisbane.
“They’re talking about bigger targets like Kalyn Ponga,” Read revealed.
“At the end of this year, he’s got an option in his contract that means you can negotiate with him from November 1 this year. The Broncos have internally spoken about Kalyn Ponga.
“2023 and 2024 are player options, he hasn’t taken them up. 2022 he’s locked in, but [the options] mean he can talk to clubs from November 1 this year.”
The senior reporter said Ponga’s move to Brisbane would turn Ponga into the game’s highest-profile star.
“I will say this about Kalyn Ponga and Brisbane, he could earn ridiculous amounts of money in Brisbane,” he said.
“He would be the face of that club for the next 5-10 years. He could earn the sort of money we’ve never seen before for a rugby league player ever.”
Ponga has also previously expressed a desire to chase his dream of playing for New Zealand at the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
Ponga has also tried to deflect questions about his potential code switch to Super Rugby as part of an attempt to make the All Blacks squad for 2023.
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