Cowboys urge NRL to make decision on Todd Carney
COWBOYS football manager Peter Parr has urged the NRL to make a call on Todd Carney's playing future after the controversial half was given the green light to train with his prospective club.
The Cowboys lodged a one-year contract for Carney last month, but the NRL is yet to register the deal given his history of off-field incidents while at the Raiders, Roosters, and Sharks.
Carney has been in regular contact with NRL officials and he was informed on Friday that he had been cleared to start training with the Cowboys while his contract is being considered.
The 31-year-old had his first session with the NRL squad this morning and he's expected to train in Townsville again tomorrow before returning to Cairns where he'll continue to play for the Northern Pride in the Queensland Cup.
Parr said the Cowboys were respectful of the process which the NRL has to follow, but he believed making a decision on Carney sooner rather than later would be best for all concerned.
"It's been a drawn out process which we expected, but I think that, particularly for Todd, the NRL need to make a decision sooner rather than later. That's what we're hoping for," Parr said.
"We see is as a positive for him that they've allowed him to train, but we haven't been given any time frame on when they might make that decision (about his contract).
"We appreciate there's a process we have to go through with the NRL, but the process needs to be finalised at some stage just so we can get some certainty."
Carney has helped the Pride to an impressive 3-2 start this season, including a 26-6 victory over the Blackhawks in Townsville last month with Cowboys officials watching on.
But the contract saga has been disruptive to his training schedule - with multiple trips to Sydney to meet with the NRL - and Pride coach Ty Williams has had to tailor a special program for him to follow.
Carney has not featured at NRL level since 2014 when he was cut by the Sharks and Parr believed the opportunity to now train with the Cowboys was an important step towards his first-grade comeback.
"Obviously he needs to be able to work on his fitness and strength and make sure that he's got the level required to play in the NRL," Parr said.
"It also gives him an opportunity to get around the team, get to know the fellas, and also spend some time understanding how we play the game.
"He'll continue to train with us until the NRL give us a final decision on whether they'll register the contract."