Josh Hoffman’s agent says he will speak with Wayne Bennett about the New Zealand fullback seeing out his Broncos contract.
Josh Hoffman’s agent will speak with Wayne Bennett about the Kiwi No.1′s future with the Broncos after the returning Brisbane coach’s admission that he’s eyeing Darius Boyd as his first choice fullback.
The rumour mill went into overdrive after a Brisbane radio station suggested Hoffman was the only Broncos player who did not receive a text invite from Bennett for a Monday meeting with the master mentor.
Hoffman’s manager Paul Hogan denied the speculation, saying his charge received the text and met up with Bennett along with teammates on Monday morning.
However, Hogan said he would push for talks with Bennett about Hoffman’s future after hearing the seven-time title-winning coach’s thoughts on Boyd.
On his first official day back at the Broncos, Bennett confirmed he would “love” both Boyd and imprisoned forward Russell Packer to join him.
Boyd is expected to follow Bennett to a third NRL club and ask for a release from his final year at Newcastle after undergoing treatment at a mental health facility.
That may create friction at Brisbane where Hoffman – off contract next year – was keen to reclaim the No.1 jersey after losing it to Test centre Justin Hodges due to injury.
Former Dally M Medallist Ben Barba is another fullback option as is Canberra import Anthony Milford.
However, Bennett made it clear he wanted Boyd at No.1 if they were reunited again.
“They all bring different things but Darius Boyd is the best of them all,” he said.
“His form over the last six years since he has been away from here has been outstanding and he brings qualities that teams need.”
Bennett did not want to speculate on the impact of Boyd’s return.
“You are getting ahead of yourself. Darius is not here, Josh Hoffman is,” he said.
“That’s the reality, so that’s what we will deal with.
“If Darius happens to come here we will make another decision.”
Besides Bennett’s views on Boyd, Hoffman may be tempted to leave following speculation Canberra will table a big money offer.
“I think Josh has made it pretty clear that fullback is his preferred position – he is an international fullback,” Hogan told AAP.
“He’s got a young family, it’s very important that he looks after them.
“He’s given a lot of service to the Broncos in the last seven seasons.
“But I don’t know where we are at in relation to next season and going forward after that.
“We would have to work things out with Wayne.”
Meanwhile, Bennett hoped to work out a deal with the NRL in order to sign Packer, who is eligible for release in January after being imprisoned last year for assault.
But Bennett could not guarantee the future of off contract ex-Test prop Ben Hannant, who has been linked to the Titans.