Corey Oates insists revenge won’t be on Brisbane’s mind when they take on Parramatta for the first time since their embarrassing 2019 NRL finals exit.
But the winger says the Broncos have a point to prove to their critics when the competition re-starts, admitting they were a fractured group last year.
Brisbane get a shot at redemption after being drawn to play the Eels on May 28 in the revised schedule following their record 58-0 finals loss to Parramatta last year.
Oates claimed the humiliating result would not be on their minds when they look to extend their unbeaten 2-0 season start.
Instead their motivation would be to silence doubters after finally coming together as a group under coach Anthony Seibold in 2020.
“I don’t think there is any (talk of) redemption,” he said.
“I just think we have a point to prove all year.
“We have done a good job of that in the first two rounds. As a team we are focusing on trying to continue that, show that it wasn’t a fluke.
“People have doubted us with our (young) age, doubted our talent, our desire.
“(But) we know we have a very talented team.
“Last year we were disappointed with the whole year, we were very inconsistent – this year we want to …be one that can show up every week.”
Oates believed Brisbane were on the right track after bonding in their second year under Seibold.
The lanky flyer revealed the team inadvertently splintered after Seibold’s belated arrival last year following a messy coach swap with South Sydney-bound Wayne Bennett.
“It was a really interrupted pre-season the first one (under Seibold). We could have come together as a group a bit better,” Oates said.
“It felt like we were all in different groups last year because of what was happening.
“Some knew the ins and outs of what was going on (but) it wasn’t really our fault, it was just the way it all panned out.
“It was unfortunate for our team (as) it affected some of our performances, but that is last year. It just feels like a stronger culture now.
“The whole team is a lot closer. I wouldn’t have a drama going out with anyone. It is really promising for us.”
Oates believed Seibold had not done anything different, saying the group simply “clicked” this pre-season.
“I feel he is putting the same message across but we are buying into it more,” he said.
“I think without the external noise and extra pressure there was last year…everyone is on the same page.”