Boyd’s plea to spare Mitchell

But he believes his cause was not helped when players such as Mitchell were pursued by the media.

Mitchell’s wellbeing has been in the spotlight after he hosted a dozen friends at his mid-north coast property, breaching state health orders. He also faces firearms charges. The subsequent scrutiny prompted South Sydney captain Adam Reynolds to compare his plight to that endured by Michael Jordan.

“It’s fairly disappointing that media outlets target certain people,” Boyd said. “When you think about it Latrell has been chased since September, October last year.

“To continually chase people… it is definitely not looking after Latrell’s mental health and wellbeing. At the end of the day we are very lucky to be able to do what we do but we are also human beings.

“Just because we are perceived to be role models and on TV it doesn’t mean we should have targets on our backs, especially unwarranted ones as well.”

Boyd was criticised and was accused of breaking social distancing rules when footage emerged of him meeting Bird in a Brisbane park earlier this month.

However, it transpired that Boyd was chatting with Bird in his role as Broncos mental health ambassador, which is endorsed by the NRL.

Former Brisbane captain Boyd has taken Bird under his wing as the former Cronulla ace recovers from his second serious knee injury in as many years.

“It (media coverage) was obviously disappointing,” Boyd said. “I care about Jack… and he is going through a pretty tough time.


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