Queensland clubs’ shame has Origin implications
Maroons legends are demanding Queensland's three misfiring NRL teams pick up their act or risk handing the Blues a third straight Origin title on a platter.
The Broncos, Cowboys and Titans are all smarting from demoralising Round 6 defeats by a combined scoreline of 83 to 34.
The NRL horror show has left the Sunshine State's three clubs' 2020 campaigns in tatters with a 5-13 win-loss record - and just two wins from 12 games since the competition resumed following the COVID-19 shutdown.
With the grand final scheduled for October 25, this year's Origin series will be played over three consecutive Wednesdays on November 4, 11 and 18.
On current form, the three Queensland teams will miss the NRL finals, meaning almost half of the current 33-man Maroons squad won't play a game for six weeks leading into Origin.
The biggest failure for all three clubs this season has been their defence.
Before Sunday's matches involving the battling Sharks and Bulldogs, no other clubs had conceded as many points.
In six matches, the Cowboys have given up 149, the Broncos 179 and the Titans 181.
Brisbane suffered their worst defeat in club history against the Roosters (59-0) in Round 4, while the Tigers notched a record halftime lead (34-0) against the Cowboys on Saturday night.
Queensland great Billy Moore said defence was a reflection of a club's culture.
"Defensively, the three worst teams in the comp are the Queensland sides," Moore said.
"To me, defence is all about attitude and it's a looking glass into the culture of a club.
"I know I come from a different era, but to me defence is culture.
"It's quite startling to see they're the three worst teams in the comp.
"Since the restart, out of 12 games we've only won two and the Cowboys beat the Titans so one was going to have to win that one.
"Culturally, there's something amiss about those clubs."
Moore said it would be a huge concern for the Maroons if all three Queensland teams missed the finals this year.
"For the first time ever in Origin history, the quality of the product could be jeopardised because if you don't play in the finals, it's a minimum six weeks off," Moore said.
"You're first game in six weeks will be Origin and there's no more torrid environment.
"If the three Queensland teams don't make the finals, then it's a huge disadvantage because the New South Wales clubs have gone deep into the finals and will be pumped up.
"That would be a concern if all three clubs miss the finals."
Former Maroons Origin assistant coach Trevor Gillmeister backed Moore's comments and called on the three Queensland teams show some fight.
"Going into Origin with all that time off will be a struggle for some blokes," Gillmeister said.
"It's going to be a big ask.
"It's a bit bewildering to think what might happen because it's all under different circumstances this year."
Originally published as Queensland clubs' shame has Origin implications