James Maloney has backed calls for sin-bins for deliberate late shots on playmakers after champion halfback Johnathan Thurston questioned if it would take him breaking a rib for the NRL to act.
The North Queensland captain was again laid out in attack by an opposition forward for the second week in a row in Thursday's breakthrough victory over Manly.
One week after getting belted by Melbourne forward Sam Kasiano that resulted in a one-week ban, Thurston was whacked by Jack Gosiewski long after passing the ball in the first half at Lottoland.
Gosiewski was charged on Friday but a minimum of a one-game ban will likely mean nothing after scans on Friday confirmed he has been ruled out for six weeks with a broken arm.
Maloney said it was time NRL officials started taking action on the field for dangerous hits after playmakers had taken to the line before passing,.
"I saw the one on replay and it was pretty ordinary against JT. It was very late," Maloney said.
"It's a hard thing. They're trying to put pressure on ball players but you've got to draw a line where it's acceptable.
"I know it hurts when you get it, it can really take it out of you. They're sin-binning for a lot of things so there's no reason why they can't for that."
Maloney's calls come after rugby league immortal Andrew Johns and Thurston have previously called for heftier punishments, including sin-bins.
Both Thurston and Cowboys officials was furious about the matter after his team's win at Lottoland, as the playmaker continues to become more vocal about protecting halves in the final year of his carrer.
"It s***ts me. It's not part of our team, not how we go about our business," Thurston said.
"What's it going to take? A broken rib and be out for three-four weeks before they really stamp down on it?"
Johns also indicated he thought the approach was deliberate, given it not only discouraged players from taking on the line, but also wiped them out for the next play.
"Players don't deserve to be dog shot in the back when they're not looking," Johns said.
"I've been harping on it for a long time but someone's going to hurt their neck, break their back, or hurt their kidneys, and we'll react then.
"There's got to be some long suspensions, and then they'll stop."