Brisbane have refuted a claim that Darius Boyd will step down from the captaincy after their humiliating NRL finals exit.
But club great Willie Carne wants the Boyd to go one further and retire to help the Broncos rebuild after Sunday's 58-0 elimination final loss to Parramatta.
News Corp reported that Boyd had "almost certainly captained the club for the last time" with 200-game back-rower Matt Gillett set to take up the reins.
Brisbane on Monday said Boyd had no plans to relinquish the captaincy, with the veteran set to see out the final two years of his reportedly $800,000-a-season contract.
Boyd, 32, had come under fire since what many believed was an ill-fated switch from fullback to five-eighth this season.
And the chorus of disapproval only got louder after the Broncos appeared rudderless with Boyd and specialist hooker Jake Turpin in the halves as the Eels ran amok at Bankwest Stadium.
However, Carne believed it was time for Boyd to "take one for the team".
The two-time premiership player said No.1 Anthony Milford must replace Boyd in the halves next year if the Broncos are any chance of ending their longest premiership drought and recapturing their glory days.
"They will need to fast track Darius into retirement," Carne told AAP.
"He might have to take one for the team.
"And fullback is not Anthony Milford's position. He is either good enough in the halves or he isn't (in the team)."
But Carne refused to point the finger at besieged coach Anthony Seibold who has vowed to undergo a full off-season review of the club.
Former South Sydney mentor Seibold had a turbulent start to his first Broncos season in 2019, enduring a messy coaching swap with Wayne Bennett.
But Carne was impressed that Seibold had turned around a horror 2-6 season start to ensure Brisbane made the finals, albeit in eighth spot.
"It was an absolute shocker against the Eels and they are going to have to let a few players go - someone has to be accountable," Carne said.
"But I don't think the coach is the problem. I don't think he has lost the respect of the playing group after they made the finals.
"I think Seibold has done the best he can."
Queensland winger Corey Oates, veteran utility Alex Glenn, back-up No.9 James Segeyaro, young gun Izaia Perese and injured halfback Sean O'Sullivan are off contract.
But Carne said Brisbane's priority should be announcing a long term deal for 19-year-old Queensland back-rower David Fifita, who is off contract next year but can be approached by rival clubs from November 1.
"He is someone you can build a team around," he said.
Oates hoped he had not played his last game for the Broncos after the crushing finals loss.
"I am hurting right now but I don't ever want to leave here," he told Nine Network.
© AAP 2019