• Will Cashmore

The Set of Six – Mediocre NRL Players: Brisbane Broncos

Welcome one and all to this magical trip down memory lane. Please keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle at all times, as we ascend on our journey into the wonderful world of Mediocre NRL Players. This could get ugly.

I love discussing Mediocre NRL Players. It’s my niche. It’s one of my favourite pastimes right up there with losing same game multis and missing 3ft putts (RIP my sanity).

I’ve even created a version of hangman dedicated to my hobby...

Essentially its hangman, but with Mediocre NRL Players instead of basic vocabulary words.

Seriously how do I come up with these things? Your guess is as good as mine.

Every NRL tragic can recall the odd few players from years gone by. Those men that immediately make you go “Huh, who was he?” and scratch your head until it bleeds. Or it might be those players, who made you wish you followed anyone else. These lists aim to give such layers their well earned 15 minutes of fame.

These are the players that was so mediocre for one reason or another, that you either don’t remember them, or have tried so very hard to forget about them.

Let me put you out of your misery, or give you a good chuckle – as I countdown your team’s best Mediocre NRL Players Set of Six, from the past 10 years.

Brisbane Broncos

What better way to start a discussion about Mediocre NRL Players, then to throw the spotlight onto the once proud rock stars of the competition. Oh how the mighty have fallen, I give to you the wooden spooning Brisbane Broncos (subject to change, COME ON BULLDOGS!).

SPOILER ALERT: There is a bloke named Darius on this list.

Nick Kenny – (2005-2011) 78 Games, 3 Tries.

When I searched ‘Nick Kenny NRL Highlights’ on Youtube, the first video that popped up was a segment the burly prop forward filmed for the lauded Footy Comedy Show ‘The Matty Johns Show’. No, not his hilarious Fox League program, I’m referring to Johns’ Channel 7 disaster ship. This segment featured Kenny alongside Matty’s ‘Don Kirk’ character, a parody of former Burkes Backyard guru Don Burke, in a lukewarm ‘comedy’ skit.

If that’s how history is going to best remember your footy career, then you must have been pretty damn mediocre.

Did you know: Nick Kenny made the Kangaroos Train-On Squad in 2009? You didn’t? Well you do now, fascinating stuff.

Lachlan Maranta – (2012-2016) 70 Games, 30 Tries

In Round 14 of the 2012 NRL Season, Lachlan Maranta made his debut against the Sydney Roosters at the Sydney Football Stadium.

Fast forward to August of 2016, and Maranta signed a two-year deal with the Queensland Reds in the Super Rugby. In reaction to this, former Wallaby Greg Martin berated the signing, exclaiming “If Wayne Bennet is prepared to get rid of his godson that would indicate he’s a crap player.” Ouch.

Old Wayno has never been afraid to bring out the savage stick, and poor old Lachie copped it here.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom for Maranta at Red Hill however, how about that try above that many called the best team try of 2015!

Greg Eden – (2015-2016) 7 Games, 2 Tries

Whilst Canberra’s George Williams is fast erasing the stigma that English Super League backs can’t make a successful transition from their home competition to the NRL, this does not mean there hasn’t been some duds in the short-term past.

Greg Eden was dubbed ‘The English Billy Slater’ on arrival in the NRL for the Broncos. We’ve heard that before.

You really are dead on arrival with a nickname like that, those sort of expectations are the type that kill careers.

Eden has plenty of talent, but to call his NRL career mediocre is like calling water wet, or Steve Roach calling someone “A good player”.

These days Gregory is killing it back at his home club Castleford Tigers in the Super League.

David Stagg – (2003-2008, 2013-2015) 112 Games, 18 Tries

For a man who played two stints at the most well-known club in the game, David Stagg was perhaps the quietest guy to play for the Broncos.

The archetypical edge utility, Stagg could play in the back row – once holding an NRL record for most tackles in a game (64), or in the centres – where he featured in the Brisbane side’s 2006 Grand Final triumph.

This list doesn’t discriminate against Origin players either, the world of Mediocre NRL Players welcomes all, and Stagg did feature for his beloved QLD Maroons one time back in 2006.

So why does he make this list? Well, ask yourself when was the last time said his name out loud?

It was probably 2006.

Luke Capewell – (2012) 5 Games, 1 Try

Previously of the South Sydney Rabbitohs and Gold Coast Titans, Luke Capewell was gifted a lifeline by the Broncos in 2012.

He played 5 games, coming off the bench in four and starting one at fullback. Capewell’s Broncos career was over before you knew it, ending with a - how do I put this delicately, well an underwhelming winning record of 0%.

In fact across his 40 total career games, he won just 11 times, with the winning percentage coming to 28%.

Like many players on these lists, he did play reserve grade Origin, playing at halfback for the QLD Residents in 2012. Unfortunately for Luke, this says it all.

He was reserve grader at best.

Darius Boyd (2018-onwards)

When Darius announced his retirement from representative football in 2018, many fans cried tears of laughter, certain he was no chance to be picked for QLD anyways.

Darius is a trooper, a deadest legend of the game despite being one of the most maligned players of the past few years, with many of those same fans desperately calling for him to retire every single week.

Some of his defensive efforts in recent years, have left a lot to be desired. When playing fullback at times, it seems Darius is actually trying to miss tackles when he falls to his haunches. At first it was funny, then fans got angry. Now it’s just sad.

But hey, being branded a Mediocre NRL Player is special, it is by no means a slandering insult. It’s up there with being an Immortal, in regards to prestige and honour. Isn’t it?

Enjoy retirement Darius. I don’t think Rugby League fans realise how much they will miss you, until you are gone.

Did we miss anyone out?

Who would you have in your Mediocre Broncos Set of Six?

Catch us next time as we turn a keen eye to the Mediocrity of the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs.


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