Footy Show apologises for 'fat-shaming' former NRL star

NRL Footy Show host Erin Molan has been forced to apologise to Dave Taylor after her TV program ‘fat-shamed’ the former NRL star.

The ex-Raiders star now plies his trade for the Central Queensland Capras in Queensland’s top league after representing Canberra last season.

Taylor was the subject of ridicule on Molan’s weekly television show after he was named “Gutsy Player of the Week,” in an obvious reference to his weight during a segment on Sunday.

“He was a gun player in his day, wasn’t he?” Molan asked her colleagues before the jokes kicked off.

“What an athlete,” NSW Origin coach Brad Fittler added.

Molan has come under fire over the Footy Show’s segment about Taylor. Pic: Ch9/Getty

“Well Dave, look, it’s a three-letter word, fit, OK, but it’s very easy to turn the ‘I’ into an ‘a’, that’s all I’m saying – get that ‘a’ back to an ‘I’,” fellow panelist Joel Caine chimed in with.

The unnecessary ridicule was met with a torrent of anger on social media.

Molan has since offered her apologies on behalf of the program, insisting the segment was never meant to be offensive.

“(I’m) absolutely appalled by this,” Molan posted.

“Unreservedly apologise on behalf of the show to Dave Taylor. The panel were expecting the vision to show a gun try or a big hit as our gutsy play. There was no malice or intent to offend but that doesn’t matter. We are sorry.”

Many viewers, however, were refusing to buy the excuse offered by the show’s host.

Taylor, who has represented Queensland eight times at State of Origin level, has battled weight issues his whole playing career.

Taylor during his playing days with the Raiders. Pic: Getty

After failing to play a single game for the Toronto Wolfpack he signed a two-year deal with the Capras in February.

His extensive NRL career included stints with the Brisbane Broncos, the Gold Coast Titans and the Raiders, as well as a brief stint in the English Super League in 2016.