Pundit Gary Schofield described Brough and Ellis as the worst halfback pairing in Super League, and that their display in the Cup was “pathetic”.
Kelly said it is easy criticise when playmakers are playing behind a dominated forward pack.
“I guess in defeat our halfbacks can come under scrutiny, but I don’t think we functioned in the middle,” he said.
“I think in terms of the Hull halfbacks, they came under some criticism but they’ve got a pack getting quick play the balls, getting over the top of the opposition.
“I thought we failed to do that against Wakefield so the halfbacks sufered. It’s easy to be critical off the back of what I would say was a beaten park at times.
“The reality is the wholse side deserved a bit of criticism.”
Under-19s coach Chris Thorman could be given the reins.