We are just two months into a long NRL season, but the Penrith Panthers’ slow start means the game against the Broncos is one they must win, otherwise their season could be all but over.

The Panthers were believed by many to be premiership favourites heading into the 2017 season, but after eight rounds of footy they now sit in 14th with just two wins compared to six losses.

They presented one of the most dangerous attacks in the competition in the second half of last season, however this season they have been anything but, currently on a four game losing streak.

They are averaging 17.25 points a game so far this season, and if you take away their two wins against the Knights and the Tigers, they have scored 62 points in just six games.

Combine this with recent off-field dramas, such as captain Matt Moylan and others being dropped for breaking team protocol, and things aren’t looking great for the mountain men.

If the Panthers are to turn their season around, it starts tonight against the Broncos. This is no easy feat as Wayne Bennett’s men are coming off three straight losses and will be looking for a spot in the top four.

What is working in the Panther’s favour is their recent record against Brisbane, having won five of their past seven meetings, including both games last season.

Penrith are a desperate side, and sometimes that can bring out the best in a team. For coach Anthony Griffin and his men, it simply must. Otherwise, it could be goodnight for the Panthers in 2017.