Brisbane prop Payne Haas has welcomed the appointment of club legend Kevin Walters as new head coach of the Broncos.
Walters, a six-time premiership winner, didn't attend Wednesday's end-of-season awards breakfast in Brisbane where NSW State of Origin representative Haas shared the Paul Morgan Medal for the club's best player in 2020 with Pat Carrigan.
The honour came with mixed emotions for Haas after a season where the Broncos won just three matches on their way to the first wooden spoon in the club's 32-year history.
Haas says the imminent arrival of Walters as the replacement to Anthony Seibold will have an immediate impact on the playing group.
"You don't play for accolades," said Haas, who also won the forward of the year prize and shared the players' player award with Carrigan.
"You just want to win and we didn't do that this year, we failed to do that. I know next year is going to be a bit different.
"Obviously Kevvie's going to have high expectations and we have to live up to it but that's the Broncos club in itself. You just have to live up to it."
Carrigan, who took on the club captaincy while Alex Glenn was injured, said Walters' winning record as a player gave him instant respect among the Broncos playing group.
"I'd love to win a competition in my career and that's why I'm playing the game and he's won six so that speaks for itself," Carrigan said.
"Whatever Kevvie says will go and I'm excited for that and I'm really excited to learn off him and hopefully start winning some footy games because when you start winning you start having a bit more fun."
Wednesday's awards also featured the return of Tevita Pangai Jr to the Broncos' playing group.
The 24-year-old missed the end of the 2020 season after being fined and stood down for breaching COVID-19 biosecurity protocols.
He narrowly avoided having his contract ripped up but Haas said Pangaj Jr's return was a welcome moment.
"It is good to see T. He's been out of the bubble so we haven't been able to see him," Haas said.
"He's looking trim, I think he's at 112 kilos now so he's looking good. I know he'll be a big part of our success next year.
"Tevita's a switched-on person, just had a bit of a muck up there but I think it's all sorted now and he's just training hard."
BRISBANE BRONCOS 2020 NRL SEASON AWARD WINNERS
Paul Morgan Medal: Pat Carrigan/Payne Haas
Players' Player Award: Pat Carrigan/Payne Haas
Best Forward: Payne Haas
Most Consistent Player: Pat Carrigan
Best Back: Kotoni Staggs
Play of the year: Kotoni Staggs - Rd 15 vs St George Illawarra, Suncorp Stadium
Rookie of the year: Herbie Farnworth
Clubman of the year: Gina Malcolm