NSW coach Laurie Daley's plans for State of Origin I are in turmoil with Tom Trbojevic possibly out for the season and Jarryd Hayne under an injury cloud.
Both backline superstars went down on a night of high drama during the NRL double header at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday night.
Trbojevic was in a moon boot nursing an ankle injury as the team returned to Sydney on Sunday afternoon.
He will be sent for scans on Monday but coach Trent Barrett said he was facing being sidelined for the rest of 2017.
Trbojevic had all but locked up a Blues wing spot for the May 31 Origin opener in Brisbane and was expected to be named on the left edge outside Hayne.
He now appears extremely unlikely, leaving Daley with the likes of Jack Bird, Michael Jennings, James Roberts and Sea Eagles teammate Dylan Walker to come into the NSW backline.
A Blues recall for Walker would be a remarkable turnaround after he was pilloried for his nine-minute cameo off the bench in Origin I last year before being dropped after playing in the centres in game two.
Walker has rediscovered his touch since being moved from five-eighth to centre this year, racking up four tries, five try assists, seven line breaks, 42 tackle busts and averaging over 100 running metres.
"I'm more gutted for Tommy than anyone," Walker said.
"He deserves the spot more than anyone. He's a special player and I'm really close with him and he's one of my good mates here.
"I'm not fussed about that door opening. Hayne has been there and done that."
Trbojevic had to be helped off the field in the 64th minute after coming down awkwardly trying to contest a bouncing ball.
To add insult to injury, Brisbane picked up the spilt ball and scored through Corey Oates even though there were questions about the legality of David Mead's tackle in the air on Manly No.1.
The play was allowed to go on because Andrew McCullough's kick had been allowed to bounce, however Barrett questioned how it was different to a player being tackled mid-air trying to defuse a bomb.
Manly players' views on the incident were mixed - Walker said he took no issue while prop Brenton Lawrence said he hoped the NRL looked at the inconsistency of the ruling.
Meanwhile the Gold Coast said Hayne was "80 per cent right" after he limped off with an ankle injury late in their thrilling 38-36 victory over ladder leaders Melbourne.
The club said he had been cleared of major injury and he joined his teammates on the field for post-match celebrations.
It casts doubt about whether the champion outside back will be able to take his place for the Origin series opener, but the Titans played down the problem.