Off-contract Oates faces uncertain future at Broncos

Brisbane veteran Corey Oates has not received a contract offer for next season from the club and says he will almost certainly finish his NRL career a one-club man. 

The off-contract 29-year-old winger has played 211 NRL games with the Broncos and has inked one-year extensions late in seasons in the past, but at this stage the club has not opened talks for a new deal.

Oates was asked whether he would be a Bronco in 2025.

"Hopefully," he said.

"As I have said, probably the 20 times you have asked me, I will leave it up to the club.

"I have always made it pretty well known that I am not going to go anywhere. It is always either going to be here or that will be it. If there is something put forward, I will look at it with my family.

"I just want to enjoy the rest of the year and hopefully we can go all the way. I still feel like we can."

Oates is likely to retire if he does not get a new Broncos deal, although he is open to the possibility of a short deal elsewhere.

"It is probably not a definite no but it would be a pretty hard decision for me to leave the club I have been at since I was 14 or 15," he said.

"I have always wanted to be a one-club player and that was always going to be here." 

Oates has scored 121 career tries and is third on the all-time Broncos list, just one behind Darren Lockyer.

The lanky winger arrived at the club in 2011, the same year Lockyer retired, before debuting in 2013.

Lockyer
Darren Lockyer's final year at the Broncos in 2011 was Corey Oates' first.

"It is great company to be in," Oates said.

"Locky finished and I started. I found out I would be coming here to play and train as a kid and all I wanted to do was have a training session with my idol growing up. 

"He retired the year I got here which was pretty hard to cop but to be up on that board with him is just as good.

"If I can equal or get past him it would be great but I have never been in it for all the accolades for myself. 

"It is about playing the game I loved my whole life and being part of a club I grew up watching and supporting."

Oates conceded Steve Renouf's record of 142 tries was probably a bridge too far.

Oates missed training on Monday but said a knee niggle would not keep him out of Saturday night's home clash with St George Illawarra.

"It is just old age. It is actually all good," Oates said.

"It copped a bit of a knock and there was a bit of a flare-up.

"It was always the plan just to give it a rest and keep me ready for the bigger training sessions during the week."

The Broncos who have lost their last five games, only have 17 of their top 30 to pick from against the Dragons due to injury and State of Origin duty. 

Oates said that statistic was "confronting" on one level but added the Broncos still had a "great team" and plenty of strike weapons with Deine Mariner, Kotoni Staggs and Ezra Mam in the side. 

"For us it about completing, sticking to the game plan and working hard," Oates said.

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