Retired Bronco Mick De Vere is all set to return to the playing ranks; however De Vere and Brisbane are waiting for the NRL to OK his cameo season after potential salary cap issues could derail the plan.
De Vere and Brisbane have been in talks with the NRL to disregard De Vere’s current job as a coaching staffer with Easts Carina from any salary cap calculations. Without the OK from NRL and cap officials, De Vere’s comeback looks unlikely. The workhorse De Vere now 32 years old, has remained in good fitness and kept close ties with the Brisbane club since returning from the UK.
De Vere called it quits after playing for Huddersfield in the UK in 2006 returning home to Australia to take the Easts Carina coaching job, which is partly funded by the Brisbane club.
Working closely with the Broncos has reignited De Vere’s hunger and he wants to achieve the dream of being a 10-year player with the club – which could be done with a single return year in the NRL.
Regardless, De Vere wants to remain in the coaching ranks – with or without acceptance into the NRL with the Broncos in 2009.
“The No. 1 reason I’m playing is because I love the game and I love the Broncos and I want to come back and help the club,” he said.
“I also miss competing. Being out of it probably helped me get my desire back because I had achieved everything I wanted, winning premierships, playing State of Origin and playing for Australia.
“I wanted to go and play in England and I did that. So once I had achieved all my goals I didn’t have the same passion or desire I had when I was younger. But being out of it and getting into coaching and development, when you coach it gives you a new perspective on the game and it probably ignited that passion in me. I didn’t really get to finish the way I wanted to here either.”
Broncos chief executive Bruno Cullen said the club had submitted a detailed case to salary-cap auditor Ian Schubert and they expected an answer early in the New Year.