Morgan could be another 2009 Hayne, just with a premiership and humility

Dane Eldridge Columnist

By , Dane Eldridge is a Roar Expert

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    I’m not sure about everyone else, but I reckon Michael Morgan might have improved in the absence of Johnathon Thurston.

    The makeshift halfback has lifted the Cowboys to tonight’s grand final from the depths of eighth, a position historically filled by teams that couldn’t beat a mango seed.

    Once known solely for versatility, Morgan is now known for stupidly outrageous versatility and memes about Thurston’s job security.

    After clocking pressure playmaking, he has been ordained everything from a halfback, a five-eighth, a fullback, and the goddamn truth, amen.

    While Morgan’s wide-ranging contributions have seen him poll votes in the halves, the edges, the Brownlow and Miss America, his starburst in this Cowboys charge has been the gravy on the wedding cake.

    Frankly, him morphing elite couldn’t have come at a better time. His team was struggling, and more importantly, his contract is up for renewal.

    This upcoming deal will surely make the halfback the game’s next million dollar man, something pretty handy with the popularity of money at an all-time high.

    Morgan’s run is reminiscent of Jarryd Hayne’s famed stretch in 2009, minus half a forest of column hyperbole.

    For those who’ve never had the discomfort of enduring an Eels fan living in the past, Hayne closed the year with a strain of football’s rarest premium outside of Powers.

    Jarryd Hayne is congratulated by his team mates. (AAP Image/Action Photographics, Robb Cox)

    (AAP Image/Action Photographics, Robb Cox)

    He hauled Parramatta to the grand final in the process, overcoming near-insurmountable hurdles like crippling pressure and a spine including Jeff Robson and Matt Keating.

    Hayne has been living off the royalties ever since, with the dollar-to-second earning ratio comparable to Jessie’s Girl.

    Morgan finds himself on a similar run, one that could catapult him to rare privileges like code hopping and choosing his own coach.

    Sure, there are a few small differences. Morgan is down on YouTube hits, and there’s fewer comparisons to Christ. If the pair were a Playboy magazine, Hayne would be the pictures and Morgan the articles.

    But if you haven’t drooled over the Cowboy’s humble ingenuity in the clutch, you are probably a tasteless degenerate who doesn’t appreciate the beauty of deliberate tactical kicking with an everyman haircut.

    Along with Taumololo and chicken pox, the consummate halfback is the key to stopping the Storm on Sunday.

    Sure, there’s every chance Paul Green’s men will be relegated to the day’s second exhibition artist alongside Macklemore. But Morgan is so influential right now he could almost make the game kick off at the advertised time.

    If he can continue conjuring other similar magic, he could be the man remembered for delivering North Queensland a long-awaited premiership fairytale after a wait of nearly 24 months.

    Dane Eldridge
    Dane Eldridge

    Dane was named best and fairest in the 2004 Bathurst mixed indoor cricket competition. With nothing in the game left to achieve, he immediately retired at his peak to a reclusive life ensconced in the velvet of organised contests. Catch the man on Twitter @eld2_0.