Broncos will cope without best player Oates: Reynolds
Brisbane must get used to life without the player described by captain Adam Reynolds as their best of last year, with the veteran half backing Jesse Arthars to step up and fill the breach.
Queensland winger Corey Oates will miss up to two months after having his jaw broken by a shoulder charge from North Queensland fullback Scott Drinkwater in Brisbane's 28-16 win last Friday night.
Arthars will step in at left wing against St George Illawarra on Saturday at Suncorp Stadium.
The 24-year-old impressed when he came on for Oates against the Cowboys and was in sparkling touch in the trials.
"We probably lose the set starts like Oatesy gives us but Jesse does a fantastic job of that as well," Reynolds said.
"He has got a different way he approaches the game. He finds space in behind the ruck and is a ball of energy out there.
"(Oates) had a fantastic season last year and was probably our best player. He showed that in round one and the part he played (against the Cowboys).
"He is such a crucial part of our team. He is safe under the high ball, safe in defence and gets our sets started with those tough carries.
"We have some depth to fill in while he is away."
Oates had an operation on his jaw on Saturday and Reynolds said his teammate was in "high spirits".
"We are all thinking of him," he said.
"He has had the operation and it was pretty successful from what I have heard. I am looking forward to getting the big fella back as soon as possible."
While the loss of Oates was a blow, the Broncos were boosted by the debut of fullback Reece Walsh.
Every superlative under the sun has been used to describe the former Warrior's performance against the Cowboys, in which he set up three tries and scored one himself .
Reynolds won the 2014 premiership with South Sydney and has played with Greg Inglis and Latrell Mitchell, among many others. He has seen it all but rarely has he been as impressed with a player as he has been with the 20-year-old Walsh.
"I have had some pretty good fullbacks in my time but there is something special about Walshy," Reynolds said.
"He's a young kid still and still learning the game. He is a student of the game and always looking for ways to get better.
"It is encouraging signs from a young kid. A lot of young kids these days as soon as they get away from footy they forget about it.
"It shows his hunger and desire in his performance. It is not new to us. We see it day-in and day-out at training."