Darius Boyd said the arrival of Anthony Seibold at the Broncos could not have come at a better time as another drama-charged season with Wayne Bennett "wasn't going to work".
The former Maroons and Test representative said while the early signs of the Seibold era were extremely promising, the second iteration of Bennett's time at Brisbane still held a special place in Boyd's thoughts.
Boyd's abiding respect for Bennett and his determination to stay in touch and maintain their close bond was the first point to emerge from a chat with NRL.com.
Secondly, the Broncos captain made it clear that he was enjoying being coached by Seibold and relishing the atmosphere at Red Hill with the pressures of Bennett's final months now behind the club.
Bennett was at loggerheads with the Broncos' hierarchy and has said since taking the reins at South Sydney that he was expecting to be sacked. Boyd was also not surprised.
Boyd thriving in life after Wayne
"When I first found out, I thought that is what was coming," Boyd told NRL.com.
"I think I even said to Wayne that it wasn't going to work. The scrutiny we would have had all year if Wayne had stayed would have derailed our season.
"I think we did well to get to where we did last year in the end with a young squad and all the stuff that was going on."
Seibs has a great footy brain and training style. I am really enjoying the competitiveness of our trainingBrisbane fullback Darius Boyd
As the Broncos captain spoke he had a sense of calm about him. There was relief that coming to work was no longer walking into a hotbed of speculation about the coach.
"You think you can get through it and you can push forward but, as I was saying to Ian Prendergast when the RLPA was here, now that everything has smoothed over and all the drama has gone it is so much more enjoyable," Boyd said.
"There are not five camera crews out the front every day or a different story on the news or in the papers, not that I read it, but it is hard to get away from.
"As the captain, you might pass a fan on the street or some of your mates might say 'what is happening?' and you can't get away from it."
The 31-year-old fullback, who has played all of his 292 NRL games at three clubs under Bennett, had more to adjust to than just losing his lifelong coach.
"I have really enjoyed Seibs and the new staff but I don't want to disrespect the past either," Boyd said.
"I loved being with Wayne and all the staff that I had. That was a big change, not just realising Wayne was going, but also the support staff who I'd had for 13 years in Jeremy [Hickmans] and Scotty Barker.
"Tannath [Scott] was another I'd had since Newcastle. I knew all the trainers would be different and the schedules but I've worked with Seibs before and I knew he cares about the players."
Instead of getting asked what is happening with the Bennett saga, Boyd is now getting asked what it is like under Seibold and being coached at club level by a new mentor for the first time.
"Seibs has a great footy brain and training style. I am really enjoying the competitiveness of our training," Boyd said.
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"We are probably out on the field a little bit shorter in duration but it is really intense and game-specific stuff. We have a younger squad and I think all the young boys enjoy that competition.
"There is a lot of feedback and a lot of analytic stuff around watching video, team meetings and the GPS [data] we get sent to us."
As a human being, Boyd said Seibold was "even better than I thought".
"I'd only had limited dealings with him in the Origin arena as an assistant coach but I said in the first press conference [when Seibold was appointed] that he was always very approachable," Boyd said.
"I felt like that was the vibe he had back then and now that he has been here as our head coach I think he is even more approachable.
"He is really thorough, gets along with the players and talks to everyone. He shakes everyone's hand and asks how the family is going. It is a young group and I think they need that.
"Even the way we do things around meetings or the way we get together and do things outside of rugby league as well, I think he is on the right page and knows what he is doing."
Boyd was quick to add that seven-time premiership winner Bennett also knows what he is doing as he pointed to the silver lining in the 69-year-old's appointment at South Sydney.
"Souths is one of the most proud and famous clubs in rugby league. I think my wife told me that memberships just went up down there at Souths and obviously that is because of Wayne, his stature in the game and what he has been able to achieve," Boyd said.
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"He has worked with Sam Burgess and his brothers with England and has got GI there, one of the greatest players of the modern era. Damien Cook has been on fire in recent times and he has got a great squad there at a club with a proud history and great fan base. He should be excited."
Bennett took Boyd to St George Illawarra Dragons in 2009 and the following year rewarded the long-suffering Red V fans with a 33-year drought-breaking premiership. Boyd sees similarities between the Dragons squad and the one Bennett now has at his disposal.
"I think he has a strong mix of youth and experience just going off the Souths squad from last year, and the Dragons were a bit like that when he went there," Boyd said.
I think I even said to Wayne that it wasn't going to workDarius Boyd on Bennett at Broncos in 2019
"Wayne is at Souths for a few years and whether they win the comp or not I am sure they will go close. He might tinker with that squad for the next couple of years to give himself the best chance of winning a premiership there."
They won't be ringing each other every other day but Boyd and Bennett will stay in touch in the years to come.
"I spoke to him over Christmas and he said he was enjoying it. We are going to keep in contact. That is one thing I was most nervous about," Boyd said.
"Our relationship is not what everyone thinks though. It is not a father-son relationship. I am an introvert and he is probably the same."
"Sometimes we get on the phone and there is not a lot said, but I have always respected him and I’d like to think he has respected me for what I have been able to do on and off the field with him.
"Since he's left I’ve texted him here and there and we’ve called each other and spoken about different things and how our family is. Life moves on but we will still keep in contact."