Stand-in fullback Tex Hoy is likely to be at least one scapegoat following the dismal loss to the Wests Tigers in Brisbane as the Knights face another huge challenge against the Cowboys in Townsville on Thursday night.
In camp at Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast, the Knights will travel to Townsville on Tuesday and are expected to be without fullback Kalyn Ponga for the game after he missed the Tigers defeat with a slight groin tear.
But that won't necessarily give Hoy a reprieve after he came up with a couple of crucial errors at the back in a disappointing performance. His wayward goal-kicking also won't help his cause.
Knights coach Adam O'Brien refused to speculate on what his team might look like for the Cowboys clash when contacted by the Newcastle Herald. But he did reveal he expected veteran playmaker Blake Green to be available after recovering from a cracked rib.
"Provided he gets through some contact this week OK, Greeny should be right to go if selected," O'Brien said. "We'll have a close look at the make-up of the team after we train today [Monday] and go from there."
With Phoenix Crossland showing some good signs at halfback, he is certain to be retained with Green expected to play in his preferred five-eighth position.
That would potentially leave the versatile Kurt Mann, who was also off his game against the Tigers, to shift from five-eighth to fullback at the expense of Hoy.
O'Brien also has added injury problems with winger Hymel Hunt lasting just 34 minutes against the Tigers before leaving the field with a recurrence of a hamstring injury and could be sidelined for a month.
Rookie Brayden Musgrove, who pulled out of the Tigers clash with rib soreness, will return against the Cowboys.
It's understood there are other injury concerns with youngster Simi Sasagi in line for an NRL debut if further changes are needed.
O'Brien, still bitterly disappointed with his side's showing in Brisbane, admits he doesn't have a lot of room to move when it comes to shaking up his squad with Mitchell Pearce, Ponga, Edrick Lee, Hunt, Chris Randall and Dominic Young unavailable.
"I'm getting sick of saying it because we keep saying the same thing but we need another response to what we dished up in Brisbane," he said.
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