Blues coach Brad Fittler says the early head knock to Maroons star Cameron Munster was a reminder of the value of having a play-making option on the bench, after Queensland utility Ben Hunt was forced to play 78 minutes in the halves in Origin II.
As well as the Blues played to level the series, they also had their share of luck, dodging any serious injury woes after heading into the game with a four-forward bench.
With revelations after the game that hooker Damien Cook spent Monday night in hospital and had to head straight from there to Tuesday's captains' run with Cam McInnes on standby, Fittler will look closely at the Dragons captain or fit-again Storm flyer Ryan Papenhuyzen for a bench role for the series decider.
"There's a few boys there [waiting for a chance] and looking at what happened in the game last night, not just to us but to them, looking at concussions, Munster got concussed," Fittler mused at the team recovery session on Thursday.
"The beauty of someone like Ben Hunt who can play halves or hooker – you don't want to anticipate someone getting hurt but you need to be able to cover everyone.
Match: Maroons v Blues
Game 3 -
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
"I thought Browny [Nathan Brown] did a good job, we only threw him in for a couple of minutes at the end but his first stint was awesome. It's a headache."
Fittler was referring to Eels lock Nathan Brown, who spent the final couple of plays of the match bending his back at dummy half after Cook was given a three-minute early mark to follow on from a potent 15-minute stint as a middle forward midway through the second half.
Cleary's man-of-the-match performance by the numbers
While Brown has done a little dummy-half work, he is hardly an ideal option if Cook is injured early in game three. Versatile Eels skipper Clint Gutherson could cover several positions while interchange forward Isaah Yeo could cover centre in the event of an injury.
But the chance of a game-deciding HIA early on in the winner-takes-all clash has provided food for thought, and Papenhuyzen – who made his way into first grade as an attacking spark off the bench for the Storm in 2019 – could find himself vying with McInnes to replace Brown next Wednesday.
A third option could be to start Stephen Crichton or Zac Lomax in the centres and use Gutherson as the utility.
"I saw him train today," Fittler said of the Storm No.1. "Papi is fit."
With 21-man squads required by Friday afternoon, Fittler said he would consult his coaching staff to decide whether any cover or changes are required.
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"I don't know. I don't want to out-think myself. I'll sit down with the staff and have a chat," he added.
Fittler will be reluctant to make too many changes after such a dominant performance, with all four bench forwards adding plenty of impact in a marked improvement from game one.
"Your interchange normally always works when you're in front and leading by a couple of tries," Fittler added.
The top tackles from Origin II
"I might have to go back and look at the first game as well, just to work better on fatigue. Once we absorbed that first bit of pressure we seemed to control a lot of the game."
Fittler may bring Raiders winger Nick Cotric into the 21 as cover for Addo-Carr, who picked up a toe injury early in game two before producing yet another starring performance with two more tries and some huge defensive plays and kick-chases.
"It's all good but, just a jarred toe," Addo-Carr said.
Match Highlights: Blues v Maroons
"I ran the ball and one of the Queensland boys landed on my foot, landed on the back of it and put pressure on my big toe.
"I didn't really feel it until the back end of the first half, it just started getting really stiff and sore and I couldn't run on it properly.
"The doctors and physios said I should be right, bit of swelling, I've just got to ice it."