Reece Hoffman, a 19-year-old junior Queensland Origin representative, is an outside chance to play on the wing, which would allow Tommy Talau to shift into his preferred centre position.
But the experience of Lawrence and fitness of Chee Kam are likely to force Hoffman to wait a little longer yet for his NRL debut.
Leilua will miss four games for hitting Penrith’s Dylan Edwards off the ball late in the game. Tigers coach Michael Maguire was aware Leilua was fired up once his brother Luciano was knocked out earlier in the game, but the former Raider appeared to calm down and was left on the field before he snapped. Luciano is expected to pass his concussion protocols in time for the Souths clash.
Marshall has vowed to fight his way back into the Tigers side and been impressive at training. His best hope of a return now appears to be an injury to Brooks or Reynolds.
While it remains to be seen if Marshall plays on beyond this season, the Tigers have made early inquiries about Elliott for 2021.
Elliott dislocated his shoulder in the final five minutes against Souths on Sunday night, and scans on Monday have indicated he will now likely need surgery.
There remains a good chance he has played his last game for the Bulldogs.
Elliott was hoping to avoid going under the knife and returning in six to eight weeks. He was also keen to give himself a shot at a NSW Origin bench spot, especially with Victor Radley’s season-ending knee injury opening up an opportunity for a middle forward.
The Herald can reveal Elliott injured the same shoulder six weeks ago when he heard a ‘pop’ as he slipped on a mat during a wrestling session.
Yet the off-contract Elliott wanted to give his all to help the Dogs climb up the NRL ladder while also putting himself in the shop window with rival clubs.
Having watched Josh Jackson and Kieran Foran and former top Dog James Graham all defy pain only inspired Elliott to keep going.
Canberra have discussed Elliott internally and briefly flirted with the idea of trying to sign him before the August 3 transfer deadline because of the amount of injuries to their forwards.
Raiders coach Ricky Stuart has long been a fan of Elliott who grew up on the south coast.
St George Illawarra have also been linked to Elliott with Tyson Frizell to depart for Newcastle and the uncertainty surrounding the future of Jack de Belin.
Elliott’s preference is so stay in Sydney where he has settled down with partner Robyn and their newborn son, Lennex.
Maguire loves players who are tough and are not afraid of hard work and Elliott falls into that category.
Christian covers rugby league for The Sydney Morning Herald.