Broncos all ears for Briers, unsung maestro of attack

Joel Gould |

Brisbane’s assistant coach Lee Briers talks tactics with captain Adam Reynolds.
Brisbane’s assistant coach Lee Briers talks tactics with captain Adam Reynolds.

Unheralded outside the club but certainly not inside it, Brisbane assistant coach Lee Briers has been credited as a key figure in the side’s rediscovered attacking potency.

The Warrington legend, who played more than 400 games for the Wolves in the English Super League, works closely with the Broncos’ spine members and on unlocking the side’s attack.

Briers and captain Adam Reynolds can often be seen deep in discussion at training as they talk tactics and messaging to the rest of the group.

Reynolds is the conduit, but Briers’s influence has also been vital in a one-on-one basis. 

If Jock Madden goes on to become the successful long-term half after Adam Reynolds retires then Briers will be one of the first people he thanks.

Madden filled in at half when Reynolds was injured for the past two rounds. He gets another chance to shine on Saturday night at No.6 away against his former club Wests Tigers due to a finger injury to Ezra Mam. 

Briers’s advice will be integral to his success. 

“Lee has been massive for me,” Madden said.

“He doesn’t get mentioned as much as he should.

“He’s helped me so much with my attack, just simplifying my game, my role, and getting the best out of me in that way.

“He’s a really smart man. He can pick teams apart and always comes in with a strong game plan every week.

“That helps the team massively.”

Jock Madden (centre) in training for the Broncos.
Feedback from Lee Briers has been invaluable for Broncos players including Jock Madden (centre). (Darren England/AAP PHOTOS)

In 2022, the Broncos had the ninth best attack in the league in the regular-season games, averaging 21.83 points per match. 

In Briers’s first year (2023) that increased to 26.63 per match, the Broncos
second behind only Penrith.

This year, without several key attacking players, the Broncos are second for attack with 182 points in seven games.

Briers, a halfback himself, was a masterful kicker and Madden has picked the Englishman’s brain for tips, as well as watching him in action around training.

“You can see he was an unbelievable player, when he practises kicks and lands them on the spot,” Madden said.

Madden had one of his best kicking displays for the Broncos in last week’s win over Canberra: one of his floating bombs led to a try and overall his game management was classy.

Reynolds has also provided plenty of advice to the 24-year-old Madden.

“The first time I spoke to Reyno was on the field after a drill,” Madden said. 

“I asked him a question, we had to go to the next drill and he was still chatting to me.

“I knew from that first time he was willing to teach me and he hasn’t stopped since.

“We sit down and he goes over clips with me. He asks me questions about how I can improve my game and tells me where I can improve as well.

“He’s been a great mentor for me.”