Payten waves white flag on NRL finals

North Queensland coach Todd Payten admits his side's finals chances are all but gone after a dismal and disappointing loss to Brisbane in the Queensland derby.

TODD PAYTEN Picture: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images

A 37-18 hammering at the hands of Brisbane is the final straw for North Queensland coach Todd Payten.

Payten did not mince his words when analysing how the Cowboys' last window of opportunity in the 2021 season had effectively been shut with just five rounds remaining.

"I'm bitterly disappointed. There's no other way to articulate that," he told reporters after Friday's loss.

"We couldn't find enough reasons to make tough decisions and compete at the necessary level in the NRL."

Victory against a woeful 2021 Broncos side could have been the platform for one final push for the 13th placed Cowboys.

But Payten's players weren't up for it.

"We had everything to play for and we couldn't find enough reasons to make tough decisions like we have the past few weeks," he said.

Riding a seven-game losing streak, the Cowboys are now fronted with another Queensland derby when they face Gold Coast away next Sunday.

Payten says the long turnaround should benefit his side as they look to make amends from the horror 44-8 hammering the Titans handed them in round three.

"We've got a long turnaround so we're going to get some good training days," he said.

"We've been pretty physical with our training loads and that's not going to change.

"We need to lay the foundation for what's going to happen down the track."