Monday Buzz: Titans send stars out on the tools
The Gold Coast Titans will swap their footy boots for steel caps when the NRL first grade squad is sent into the workforce this week.
Bryce Cartwright, Ryan James and Phillip Sami are washing and detailing cars at Hoppy's Car Wash in Mermaid Beach and Southport.
Eight hours a day on the sponges and the polishing rags.
Maroons Origin forward Jai Arrow is labouring for Laser Plumbing.
Nathan Peats will be bricklaying for James Johnson Bricklaying, Jarrod Wallace is landscaping and Ash Taylor is working as a carpenter.
The Titans assure us this is no publicity stunt and these are fair-dinkum jobs.
The NRL squad will be working full shifts over four days. Alongside real workers, some of them on a 10th of their footy salaries.
And when they knock off at 4pm each day they will be required to turn up to training.
Just like the old days when our football heroes had day jobs then headed to their suburban grounds for some laps of the oval and a ballwork session under lights.
This is an idea coach Garth Brennan pinched from Melbourne Storm but grew it into something bigger.
In Melbourne, Craig Bellamy insists all newly-signed rookie players work on a building site for two weeks to get an appreciation of what the alternative is to a glamour life of playing in the NRL.
The difference is that Brennan is sending his entire squad out to work across the Gold Coast.
"They've got to work a full eight hours each day," Brennan said. "No short cuts and no early marks.
"The boys have been told if they don't work to the employers' satisfaction they'll go back next week and do it all again."
Brennan said the players were looking forward to it.
Many of them will be giving back to club sponsors whose businesses have been chosen for the project to employ the players.
"It was about the boys getting out there and understanding to be grateful for what they've got," Brennan said.
"A lot of footy players have never worked a day in their lives.
"I want them to get an appreciation and awareness for what it's like out there.
"I want to see how they respond. Hopefully it will drive them harder when they come back.
"It mightn't make them better football players but it will be good for them in the long run."
This is a huge year for Brennan and his Titans.
Having picked up Cartwright last year and Tyrone Peachey and Shannon Boyd for the coming season, the club is running out of excuses for not playing in the finals.
Mix Peachey, Boyd, Cartwright in with Arrow, Peats, James and Wallace and there are few better forward packs in the NRL.
This week is just the beginning. At least they will now know the true meaning of hard work.
Every Test, ODI & T20I live, ad-break free during play and in 4K. Only on Foxtel. SIGN UP TODAY!