The Toon re-signed their former striker on a free transfer from West Ham on deadline day.
Bruce said: “You can already see players attracted to him. They all want to be around him.
“He is the local hero and he knows what it means to play for the club.
“When I brought him here I asked him, 'Can you be the elder statesman for me? Can you help me with the strikers?'.
"And we had a striker meeting and he was right in there giving his opinion.
"He has life experience now. He has been there, done it and worn the t-shirt as far as that is concerned."