I reckon Adam Reynolds could prove to be the most important recruit the Broncos have ever had...
Founding CEO John Ribot was often asked to name the best signing he ever made during his time with Brisbane, and he’d always say ‘Cyril Connell’. It’s hard to argue. Former international halfback and schools’ inspector Cyril was without doubt the best talent scout the Broncos – or possibly any other club for that matter – has ever had.
Using his vast network of contacts throughout the Queensland school system, unmatched football knowledge and an innate ability to pick which promising kids would make it all the way to the top in rugby league, Cyril was responsible for recruiting the likes of Darren Lockyer, Darius Boyd, Shane Webcke and dozens more.
While the players that Cyril recruited were mostly spotted at junior level and had never played in the NRL previously, it is hard to go past Glenn Lazarus as the Broncos’ most successful import from another club. Lazarus, who had been coached at Canberra by Wayne Bennett in 1987, had already won two premierships with the Raiders when he was signed by the Broncos in 1992.
Recruited to show the promising but under-achieving Broncos what was needed to win the big games, Lazo made an immediate impression, with the club taking out the premiership in his first two seasons.
Other notable premiership-winning ‘imports’ include Kevin Walters, Gorden Tallis, Chris Johns, Terry Matterson, Trevor Gillmeister, Mick De Vere and Ben Ikin. There are some very big names on that list.
What sets Reynolds apart from them is the fact that they joined a strong club at the height of its powers. The Broncos that Reynolds is joining is a team struggling to find its way up from the very bottom of the ladder.
The Broncos’ sensational win over the Roosters last weekend showed that Kevvie Walters is on the right track and that his team has the raw ingredients to mix it with the best.
Thursday night’s showdown with the Storm at Suncorp Stadium will be another tough test, but as Albert Kelly showed against the Roosters, the team needs an experienced head to lead them around the paddock.
Reynolds has been signed to lead the greatest rebuild in Broncos’ history – from a team that hopes to win, to one that expects to.
If he is successful, I reckon he will have earned the right to stand alongside Lazarus, Tallis, Walters and all the other great Broncos signings. Maybe even ahead of them all.
What do YOU reckon?