Warriors test prop Ben Matulino and centre Blake Ayshford are set to be dropped and halfback Shaun Johnson is also under pressure in the wake of yet another spiritless team performance in Saturday night's 38-12 NRL defeat to Canberra.

The seven-try shellacking to the Raiders was reminiscent of the limp 42-0 Anzac Day defeat to Melbourne, with the Warriors forwards unable to match the physicality of the bigger Raiders pack, and little desire or determination evident on defence up front and out wide.

The Herald understands Matulino - a two-time Warriors Player of the Year award winner - and Ayshford are likely to pay the price with a stint in reserve grade. Other players may join them, but Johnson is likely to be given a chance to redeem himself following this week's bye, when the Warriors take on the Brisbane Broncos at Mt Smart Stadium on June 4.

"There's going to be a lot (of selection changes)," Warriors assistant coach Justin Morgan told Veitch on Sport on Newstalk ZB.


"Nobody's position is really safe. I know Shaun's very frustrated with his lack of consistency. The coaching staff's frustrated with it. I imagine his peers are frustrated with it too.

"What we're doing at the moment is not getting the fruit that we need so we need to make sure that we change our ways or change our methods to try and kick-start this group into performing with some spirit.

"There's going to have to be some drastic action whether it be team selection or longer-term in terms of contracts, but that's something for (managing director) Jim (Doyle) and Cappy (head coach Andrew McFadden) to work through."

In his second game back in the NRL side after being dropped to reserve grade and stood down from test selection for his involvement in the prescription pills and energy drinks scandal, Matulino was largely ineffective in a 51 minute stint that saw him make just 10 runs for 79 metres. He was also caught out defensively close to the line as Joseph Leilua and Josh Hodgson snuck over for easy tries.

Ayshford scored a fortuitous try at the death but made poor grabbing attempts at tackles as Jarrod Croker and Josh Papalii ran in four-pointers either side of halftime, and a fumble of a poor pass from Johnson led directly to Edrick Lee's try in the 70th minute.

Johnson has struggled for form all season and despite scoring the Warriors' first try, looked a figure of frustration as he failed to stamp his mark on attack and struggled behind a beaten pack.

After impressing on debut in the round nine win over St George Illawarra, young prop Toafofoa Sipley is a leading contender to replace Matulino, but McFadden faces a bigger conundrum in solving the side's playmaking problems and issues out wide.

The likes of in-form wing Ken Maumalo and five-eighth Ata Hingano are showing great promise in reserve grade, but the coaching staff are wary of throwing them into a side low on confidence with just four wins from 11 outings.

McFadden's precarious position at the helm will also temper his desire to cull influential and senior players, and he is likely to back Johnson to rediscover his best form and hope he can lead the side's resurgence.

"You're backed into a corner a little bit in terms of who you can and can't bring in," Morgan said.

"We've got some younger guys in the squad, but at the same time in terms of their full NRL career, it might be career suicide throwing them to the lions so early.

"So sometimes you've got to drip-feed them. (But) we don't want to crucify them. It's a tough call to make in a fortnight but I imagine we'll see some changes."