Anthony Seibold says forward Patrick Carrigan "set a marker down" with his performance against the Warriors last week which has foreshadowed the quality work the 21-year-old is set to provide the Brisbane Broncos in the future.
Carrigan has been toiling away with a high work rate this year in the shadow of 19-year-old duo Payne Haas and David Fifita, both of whom represented their respective states NSW and Queensland in State of Origin this year.
Haas and Fifita both cast their own considerable shadows, physically and metaphorically, but Carrigan is emerging to cast a shadow of his own.
Against the Warriors in the 18-all draw last Saturday night he notched career highs in attack and defence with 130 running metres and 31 tackles in 37 quality minutes. His 55 post-contact metres revealed an aspect of his play that took another considerable leap forward.
"Pat showed enormous ability in the under 20s, and Queensland Cup last year, so he has got a great pedigree," Seibold said.
"That [performance against the Warriors] was the first time he has set a marker down. He has been really diligent with regard to his work rate and that sort of stuff but he made a really big impact and we gave him one of the coach's awards during the week.
"Defensively he was outstanding but with his carries he poked his nose through. Patty is earning more minutes as well and that is the big thing. He has got an important role to play in our team. Like a few other guys last week, Patty has signed for another three years and we really believe he is just going to get better and better."
Broncos v Bulldogs - Round 18
Carrigan, Fifita and Haas will team up again against Canterbury at Suncorp Stadium on Thursday night.
Fifita returned from a gruelling Origin campaign for the Maroons to score a typically audacious 30-metre try against the Warriors off the bench in an explosive 31 minutes of action.
Seibold said the Broncos would continue to manage Fifita in the wake of his first Origin series, while adding that he was an integral member of the team.
"He has been in three 10-day camps and it has been really challenging for him. I have tried to take a little bit of pressure off David," Seibold said.
"I said 'we need you in the 17'. I didn't want to rest him. I said that we needed him to play 25 minutes and he got on and certainly made an impact with the footy. He knows where he still needs to improve and that is in some of the defensive aspects of the game.
"He has come off the back of his first Origin series so we need to make sure we protect him. He is ready to go [Thursday] night and is really looking forward to playing. He will get a lot more time and he will perform well at the back end of the year."
Haas has gone from strength to strength in 2019 and is now a player Seibold can rely on from the first minute until the last. His 201 running metres and 41 tackles against the Warriors, including an 87th-minute try saver on Chanel Harris-Tavita, showcased his maturity and commitment.
Match: Broncos v Bulldogs
Round 18 -
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Seibold said Haas was ready for another massive test against a Bulldogs pack led by Maroons prop Dylan Napa.
"I have placed a lot of belief in him. Payne has been really consistent for us and has won the last couple of player's player awards. He won the coach's award this week," Seibold said.
"Payne's season has been there or thereabouts every single week as one of our better players. I am really big on trusting players and his best and worst games are very close together.
"Dylan Napa is a very experienced front-rower so it is a great challenge, and I am sure Payne is ready to go."