Brisbane Broncos CEO Paul White has hit back at critics after signing controversial prop Matt Lodge.
White told the club's website, Lodge is a far more responsible having learned from his mistakes and deserves a second chance.
“We believe after much consideration that he has worked back to a place where he now deserves a second chance,” White said.
“He has been alcohol-free for more than two years and is doing regular work with young men on the dangers of alcohol, and taking personal responsibility for their actions.
“Matt trained with the Club all throughout this year and played strongly for feeder club Redcliffe, and we have supported him in both his on-field endeavours and his personal development.
“We believe he is now on the right path and a far more mature and responsible person who has learned from his mistakes, and we will continue to support him on that journey.”
The Broncos CEO also noted the club worked closely with the NRL before signing Lodge on a one-year deal.
“The club has worked closely with the NRL on making this decision after taking feedback from those within the NRL on the rehabilitation processes in place and Matt’s adherence to those processes," White said.
“Consideration was also made of Matt’s work in the rugby league community as well as the community at large, and the NRL has now endorsed his return to the game.”