Embattled Tiger hits out after shock switch
Brooks has been moved from his usual halfback position and will wear the five-eighth jumper for their Easter Monday clash with Parramatta. Off-season recruit Jackson Hastings will steer the ship wearing the No.7.
It was a shock to some, given Brooks is paid about $950,000 – reportedly increasing to more than $1 million next year – to be the Tigers’ main man.
“The last two weeks I’ve been playing more as second receiver but wearing the No.7, so nothing really changes too much for me,” Brooks told media of the switch.
“Get me running the ball a bit more. I’ll let Jacko play that first receiver and traditional halfback, and I’ll play off the back of him.
“I think I play my best footy when I’m running the ball. I feel like I haven’t really done that the last few weeks.
“That’s the reason behind it. I want to be running the ball a lot more.”
The Tigers are winless through five games this season, following up from a 13th-placed finish in 2021 that almost got their coach Michael Maguire sacked.
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While their problems are widespread, Brooks typically has worn plenty of criticism.
He was once touted as an Origin halfback in the making, and was even likened to Immortal No.7 Andrew Johns.
But his decade-long NRL career to date has been largely underwhelming and he has never play in a finals game. The club has not featured in finals since 2011.
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Brooks, 27, is no stranger to public criticism, which is why their current plight is a little easier to deal with.
“You just don’t listen to it,” he said.
“It’s hard to fully block it out, because there’s always going to be some of it that someone brings it up to you.
“I’m used to it now, everyone has their dig.
“There’s a lot of people who have never done anything in the game. I couldn’t care less what they say about me.
“I’m focused on playing good footy. There’s always going to be chat about us.”
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