Gold Coast captain Ryan James has taken inexperienced prop Max King under his wing this week as the club seeks to rebound from a record-breaking NRL loss.
A club-record 54-0 defeat to Brisbane at the weekend prompted calls to sack coach Neil Henry.
And former owner and potential buyer Darryl Kelly at one stage raised doubts about any future involvement in the up-for-sale club.
There is speculation of a rift between players and coach and debate over whether Henry agreed with the high-profile signing of Jarryd Hayne.
Major jersey sponsor Aquis confirmed they would not continue next season.
It is a lot to take on board for a first-year player but King, 20, says the fallout has been easier to deal with thanks to the leadership of his captain.
"As a young lad I didn't know how Monday morning (following the loss) would be," King said.
"But leaders like Ryan James have been uplifting and encouraging."
King said Henry had his full backing.
"I think Neil's been unreal. There's been nothing that he's said that I haven't agreed with," King said.
"We spoke about it (the criticism of Henry) and it all stems off how we perform over the weekend.
"It's coming from no-one else but us. We just haven't been performing."
Fellow forward Joe Greenwood said the team must cast aside the turmoil and enjoy the contest.
"It is hard to take in, but it's part of sport ... we just need to go out and perform," he said.
"We need to play with a lot more confidence and enjoy it out there. I like challenges and this is a big challenge to get out of."