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The Broncos restored some pride in 2022 with the side appearing on track to make the finals before a six-week period quickly shut down their hopes in a finish to forget.

Many will focus on Brisbane's disastrous ending to a year that started so well but overall, the positives outweigh the negatives in a season that produced some answers. reflects on the key talking points for the Broncos in 2022 and how they can use it to their advantage and get back to the finals next season.

Costly lessons learned 

The Broncos have all the pedigree to get back to being a genuine finals team after two seasons previously on the bottom of the ladder. 

Yes, they slipped up badly in the final six weeks of the competition with five losses, but prior to that they were staring down the barrel of a top-four finish and remarkable turnaround. 

The Broncos got creative with the ball in hand again, something that had been missing in recent years. 

They scored more points in attack since 2018 with at 21.4 per game. They also improved their defence overall, reducing it to 22.9 (down from 29 conceded per game in 2021). 

If you take out the mammoth losses to the Storm (60 points) and Eels (53 points), they were conceding 19.9 points before that - a figure that gets plenty of teams into the finals. 

It was also a real shame about the finish because if you do take away the losses to Melbourne and Parramatta on home turf, it was a decent turnaround by the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium compared to previous years.

There's no better stadium in the world for rugby league than Suncorp Stadium with the Broncos winning seven of their 12 home games in 2022, plus an 'away' match against Manly at the venue. 

Staggs the destroyer

King Reyno

There was plenty of expectation around Adam Reynolds signing with the Broncos last season and boy, did he deliver. 

Reynolds almost single-handedly revitalised the side's attack and direction in a base that will only get better in 2023. 

The former Rabbitohs produced 19 try assists - his best effort in a season since 2013 - while his combination with Ezra Mam provided spark when the young gun came into first grade. 

Reynolds and the Broncos will be better for the run next season, particularly with another summer under the side's belt working on combinations. 

Ezra emerges

Speaking of Ezra Mam, the Broncos have all but found their long-term playmaker after a strong start to his NRL career.

The 19-year-old had a debut to remember against the Knights in Round 11 before going on to play a further 12 games. 

Not only did Mam accommodate Adam Reynolds with seven try assists, but he also crossed for six tries himself with his average running metres per game of 100 a strong side the teenager isn't afraid to take on the line. 

Ezra Mam has arrived

Prop's future sorted

It had the potential to shake up Brisbane's strong start to the year but by all reports the future of Payne Haas at the Broncos has been sorted after fears he may be lost to a rival club emerged in May. 

Haas, who was named the Broncos' player of the year for a fourth season in a row last month, has withdrawn a release request ahead of the club's 2023 campaign.

The Broncos behemoth is the club's most important forward and is crucial to the side's finals hopes next season. 

Kangaroos Debutants - Patrick Carrigan

Pat 'Wally' Carrigan

Haas' teammate Pat Carrigan also earns an honourable mention for the 2022 season after becoming one of the most improved players in the competition. 

Carrigan's form throughout the Broncos' campaign was enormous and complemented Haas in the middle of the field. 

He was awarded the Wally Lewis medal for player of the Origin series - an honour that quickly earned him the nickname Wally to his teammates - and the Broncos forward is currently being rewarded with a Test debut in the UK. 

The big task for Carrigan now is to back it up in 2023, and all signs point to him being more than able to do that after discovering his potential. 

Reece lightning is back

The return of Reece Walsh after a brief Warriors stint should be a quiet lesson for the club to be wary of rivals not only luring young talent, but also to ensure the right young players are being brought into first grade.

Walsh was for the most part of his time at the Warriors "the one that got away" for the Broncos, with some even labelling one of the worst decisions in the club's history.

However, the Broncos fended off newcomers the Dolphins to bring Walsh home, and suddenly their backline looks more dangerous than ever before. 

Walsh will have the crowd on its feet with every play and be complemented by the likes of Kotoni Staggs and Selwyn Cobbo out wide. 

A star is born

Still on Cobbo and the 2022 season was a breakout year for the Cherbourg product, who scored 17 tries in 25 games and earned an Origin call-up. 

His maiden interstate series was a mixed one which ended in an ugly concussion in Game Three but the experience from those big matches will hold him in good stead for the future. 

Cobbo put his hand up late in the season to declare he needed a break and that was brave from the 20-year-old, who received some criticism.

With a contract extension and Australian Prime Minister's XIII appearance also tied in, the Broncos have a genuine star in the making.

Cobbo's Magic Round hat-trick

Dolphins' entry a threat

The Broncos might play it down in the lead-up to the Dolphins entering the NRL but make no mistake the club will want to ensure the new franchise knows who is boss in Brisbane. 

Former Broncos premiership-winning coach Wayne Bennett has enjoyed wearing Dolphins kit around Brisbane's CBD and Suncorp Stadium in 2022 to promote the NRL's 17th club, so you'd expect some sort of response. 

Broncos fans should embrace the Dolphins coming into the competition but be wary of its threat to the powerhouse club.

Mozer set for chance

He's yet to make his NRL debut but the raps on rising hooker Blake Mozer is enough to get any Broncos fan pumped for 2023. 

A member of the Broncos Academy since he was 13, Mozer is tipped to crack into Kevin Walters' top 17 at some point next season after starring through the juniors.

We didn't get to see the best of his skills during NSW's dominant under 19s win at Leichhardt Oval in 2022 but his contract extension until 2025 at the club is a strong sign how the Broncos view him long-term. 

With Jake Turpin off to the Roosters, Mozer will join Billy Walters and Cory Paix as dummy half options next season.

Oates bounces back

How good was it to see Broncos veteran Corey Oates back to full fitness and crossing for 20 tries - his best efforts in a season - in a 2022 campaign that has rejuvenated his career. 

Oates' remarkable season even saw him earn another call-up for the Maroons, a feat that looked near impossible when he lost all confidence and suffered with injury setbacks for the past two seasons previously.

The longest-serving Bronco at the club, Oates' re-signing in September is reward for a club man who has given so much to the game and you'd expect him to continue on his run of form in 2023 with the side on the rise.

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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