Broncos rocked by double injury blow
The cursed Broncos have been hit with a double whammy with luckless playmaker Brodie Croft and boom prop Payne Haas set to be ruled out of Friday night's clash against Parramatta.
In another day of injury drama at Red Hill, Croft was set to be recalled for the clash at Bankwest Stadium, only for the former Storm halfback to suffer a sickening head knock at Broncos training.
Meanwhile, the Broncos will be without their No.1 forward with Haas to be granted a release from Brisbane's COVID bubble to visit his family following the tragic death of his brother Chace.
Haas has been in Brisbane's bubble since their clash against Penrith on September 3 and their 14-day isolation ends on Thursday, just 24 hours before the Eels clash, prompting Brisbane to put the prop's family welfare before football.
The Broncos are equally concerned for Croft's well-being. The off-season recruit was set to partner Tom Dearden in the halves after three weeks on the sidelines, but Croft's comeback was derailed when he was knocked out after colliding with a Broncos teammate.
Croft was out for several minutes and appeared to suffer a head gash, with five-eighth Sean O'Sullivan set to receive a stay of execution as the Broncos return to the scene of last year's 58-0 finals massacre.
"It was a pretty nasty blow for himself so we'll how he goes," Broncos skipper Alex Glenn said of Croft.
"He has a bit of a sore head, his head collided with one of the boys' hips and he got caught up in the wrong position.
"He is recovering at the moment the best he can, he has to see some more medical staff and the doctor tomorrow morning.
"That's not what he wanted, to go down like that today.
"He was pumped to get back in the side this week and he was looking forward to the challenge of putting the jersey back on and doing the players proud and his family proud.
"It's disappointing for him to go down and he just has to recover well.
"At the end of the day, his health is his main priority."
Haas trained with the Renegades and the Broncos will sorely miss their best metre eater, who amassed 150 metres in last week's loss to the Titans.
The towering bookend is among the survivors of last year's finals debacle against the Eels, but Glenn said the Broncos wanted Haas to be with his family following their ordeal.
"With Payne, we have an opportunity to get him out of the bubble," he said.
"This Friday we get six hours out of the bubble (before the Eels game).
"Payne has had a lot going on with his family and we want him to have an opportunity to be with his family out of the bubble.
"Payne has had an outstanding year, he has turned up every week for our team and put his body on the line and he deserves the opportunity to go home and see his family for the first time in a long time.
"It's disappointing we can't make the finals, but we want to give 'Payno' time with his family."
Originally published as Broncos rocked by double injury blow