Coach Trent Robinson has played down fitness concerns for Latrell Mitchell after the star centre's muted display in the Sydney Roosters' shock 15-10 NRL loss to Brisbane.
But the return of skipper Boyd Cordner (concussion) and winger Daniel Tupou (neck) can't come soon enough for Robinson after the Broncos snapped the NRL ladder leaders' eight-game winning run.
Robinson dismissed speculation Mitchell was still feeling the effects of a groin injury that forced him from the field last round despite the NSW X-factor failing to fire at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night.
Mitchell had scored all eight of his season's tries in the past five games and looked set to become the first Rooster to score multiple four-pointers in three straight games since 1980.
He appeared primed to pile on the points lining up against Brisbane's Gehamat Shibasaki who was appearing in just his fourth NRL game.
But Mitchell failed to fire a shot against the Broncos, making three uncharacteristic errors as he was well held by a gallant Shibasaki.
Mitchell appeared barely a week after being helped from Suncorp Stadium with a groin complaint in Magic Round, only to miraculously return to the field and help the Roosters outlast Canberra 30-24.
However, Robinson said injury was not to blame for Mitchell's round 10 display.
"I just think it was one of those games," he said.
"The (Broncos') defence was on. They were ready to rock and roll.
"A lot of guys just missed that last little bit to make something happen - it's disappointing."
Robinson expected Cordner and Tupou to return in their next round clash against Newcastle.
However, Robinson said it wouldn't matter who they had on the field against the Knights if they didn't learn from their shock loss against Brisbane.
"We got a lesson for the first time in a couple of months through a loss," he said.
"We didn't deserve to win. So there's a lesson in it for us.
"We were out-enthused. I thought we dug deep but we couldn't get to an intensity we wanted to.
"But there's lots of footy left so we pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, take our lesson and move on."