No limits on Schuster for new dawn as Manly's No.6
Manly will put no restrictions on Josh Schuster's attacking game as the free-wheeling second-rower prepares to begin life as an NRL five-eighth.
Schuster will take over the No.6 jersey on a full-time basis for the first time against Parramatta on Thursday night after a round-one injury, with Manly top of the ladder and the Eels winless.
A five-eighth for part of his youth, Schuster has been limited to four games in the position behind Kieran Foran at the Sea Eagles since his 2019 debut.
His rare stints in the halves have included the best game of his career to date against his junior club Parramatta in 2020, on the same emotion-filled day his mentor Bob Fulton died.
Schuster's time as a second-rower has been highlighted by his willingness to throw risky no-look passes that either went to ground or put his outside men into space.
Coach Anthony Seibold said Schuster's move into the No.6 jersey did put more responsibility on the 21-year-old with controlling structure and his outside men.
But he did not see any reason why it would limit Schuster's game.
"If he sees an opportunity of course we want him to take it," Seibold said.
"We have a framework as a team how we want to play our footy. We don't want him to go outside that framework. But we want him to play his footy.
"One of the gifts that he's got is being able to read numbers, look up and see what is in front of him.
"We want him to use his potential and back himself. I certainly haven't put any constraints around him.
"I want him to do his thing, that's when we see the best of Josh."
Seibold is also banking on a stint with AFL club Carlton to help Schuster take the kicking load off halves partner Daly Cherry-Evans.
Cherry-Evans, Schuster and hooker Lachlan Croker spent two days with the Blues in January, with Schuster working with kicking coaches and joining team drills.
"We worked on that fundamental of his game," Seibold said.
"But he comes with a pretty good kicking game to start with.
"I wanted Chez to go down and spend some time with Carlton's leaders and have Schuey and Lachlan Croker to go down and work on their kicking craft.
"It's nothing unusual, but why not go to the best? That's what we wanted to do."
Manly have also cleared Croker to return from a concussion on Thursday, while Seibold is confident a round-two bye won't stunt Manly's momentum after a first-up win over Canterbury.