Boyd could end up as centre: Lockyer

Darren Lockyer believes Brisbane skipper Darius Boyd could finish his great NRL career as a centre
Darren Lockyer believes Brisbane skipper Darius Boyd could finish his great NRL career as a centre

Brisbane great Darren Lockyer has flagged the possibility of Darius Boyd finishing his illustrious NRL career in the centres, confirming his time in the No.1 is over.

Boyd is seeking a second lease on his career after being shifted to five-eighth by coach Anthony Seibold, having copped criticism for his form earlier this season.

The 32-year-old skipper showed he still had plenty to offer in the Broncos' 28-6 win over Canterbury on Friday, throwing the last pass for tries to wingers Corey Oates and Jamayne Isaako.

After being pilloried for defensive lapses at fullback in the opening 14 rounds, his positional switch with Anthony Milford seems to be paying dividends and he looks comfortable defending in the front line.

Lockyer, a Broncos board member, said Boyd would not wear the No.1 again but didn't rule out another move before he retires, saying he could end up at centre.

"Darius is improving with every game in the five-eighth role, Milford is doing his job at fullback," Lockyer told the Sunday Footy Show.

"But I think as he gets more time in that role he'll find more spark.

Asked where Boyd will play out his career, Lockyer said: "Six or the centres, in the front line anyway.

"I just don't know whether the athleticism of Darius is there in the fullback role.

"When you're playing fullback now, you need that spark with your running game. He's at five-eighth now, he may end up in the centres. That's where he's best suited."

Boyd is contracted to the Broncos until the end of 2020 but also has an option in his favour for a further season.

He this week said he felt up to playing on next year and possibly beyond, with the Broncos' premiership window appearing to be wide open thanks to their dynamic young pack.

Lockyer raised the prospect of Boyd shifting to the outside backs despite the club having marquee centre Jack Bird and Kotoni Staggs, who has been touted as a future NSW State of Origin representative, on their books.

With Boyd's time in the NRL winding down, Lockyer said back-rower Matt Gillett was the man likely to inherit the captaincy when he bows out.

"(Boyd) is signed for this year and next year," Lockyer said.

"Going to the frontline is where he will stay. What he wants to do beyond that, no one really knows.

"If Darius wasn't there past next year, Matt Gillett's probably the next in line (as captain)."

Australian Associated Press