Manly pair Jamie Buhrer and Jake Trbojevic have been backed by teammates to usher in a new era as captains of the club next season.
A fresh start awaits at Brookvale after injured skipper Jamie Lyon conceded his NRL career is over, while fellow veterans Brett Stewart and Steve Matai face uncertain futures.
But star halfback Daly Cherry-Evans insists Sea Eagles are in good hands, endorsing both Buhrer and Trbojevic to succeed Lyon together in 2017 and beyond.
“I’d be a big advocate for them to be our co-captains next year,” Cherry-Evans said.
“I definitely feel a sense of security knowing if Jamie Lyon is not running me out, that I’ve got two people that are very well respected amongst this playing group to lead us out.”
A final decision on who takes over Lyon’s role won’t be made until the new year, however coach Trent Barrett is wary of placing too much burden on the 22-year-old Trbojevic.
The local junior has yet to reach the 50-game milestone.
“He is still only young and I won’t be throwing him to the wolves either. There’s still some really good older heads in the club,” Barrett said.
“I don’t have a preferred model (but) I think the co-captain model does work well when you’ve got a young bloke, like we have this year with Jamie and Jake.”
Buhrer, 26, said he is proud to have co-led the team in Lyon’s absence this year as it had been a childhood dream to skipper his favourite club.
“I suppose I only came on due to Steve Matai and (Stewart) missing a lot of time this year,” he said.
“But it’s something that I’m extremely proud of, something I’ve enjoyed to do. And if I get the chance the next two weeks, I’ll look to make the most of it.”
Trbojevic was initially nervous when he was handed a leadership role mid-season but paid tribute to Lyon for helping him adjust to his new duties.
The hard-working forward, together with brother and fullback Tom, is regarded as a cornerstone of the team over the coming years.
“When I was first a bit nervous, he said, `It makes you a better player, being captain’,” Trbojevic said.
“I thought it was going to be pretty hard, but the first few games I quite enjoyed it. It was a cool experience.
“We’ve got heaps of leaders in the team. It made it a bit easier because they’d help you out.”