Brisbane Broncos icon Wendell Sailor fears over Ezra Mam contract update | NRL news

Wendell Sailor fears the Broncos have turbulence ahead in the club’s battle to lock down its crop of red-hot rising stars after break-out 2023 seasons.

The code-hopping legend has voiced his fears about the implications of the club’s retention drive with five-eighth Ezra Mam set to earn a massive pay rise.

The Courier-Mail reported earlier this week Mam is expected to sign a long-term deal for at least three additional seasons.

The report claims the contract would be worth up to $3 million if spread across four years.

Mam is out of contract at the end of 2024 — giving the Broncos just three weeks to lock him down before rival clubs are able to begin to talk with him after the November 1 deadline.

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Rival clubs, including the Raiders, were already circling Mam before the 20-year-old’s Grand Final masterclass, which included a 20-minute second half hat-trick, bumped his value even higher on the open market.

The biggest problem the Broncos have is that Mam is just one piece of the retention puzzle.

After re-signing Payne Haas to a monster $3.5 million deal, the Broncos still have a bevy of stars who will be looking for upgraded or extended contracts, including Reece Walsh, Kurt Capewell and veteran playmaker Adam Reynolds.

Mam is looking at a huge upgrade after reportedly sitting on an annual salary of $250,000 in 2023.

Walsh is also looking at a massive upgrade, having reportedly been sitting on a deal worth $450,000 per-season in 2023. The star fullback is expected to earn more than $1m per-year in his next deal.

There have been suggestions he could earn even more than that if he hits the open market, giving the Broncos just three weeks to avoid disaster.

Adam Reynolds’ three-year contract with the club also expires at the end of 2024.

It’s why Sailor has concerns about the huge upgrade reportedly offered to Mam.

“I like Ezra but look, that’s big dollars,” Sailor said on Triple M.

“I was just talking a couple of months ago about paying Reece Walsh a million dollars.

“So if you’re paying him a million dollars, you’re paying Payne Haas a million dollars… you’re top heavy, something’s gotta go.”

Mam told The Courier Mail his “aim” is to “stay” at the Broncos.

“I want to start another generation here,” he said.

“It would definitely be a great opportunity to jump on the bandwagon here with the other boys and make the Broncos great again.

“Seeing Payne re-sign and all the other boys stay here, it’s a huge factor for myself.

“Hopefully we can get that deal done soon. I’ll be here for a long time.”

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