Rein: Rhythm Reaps Positivity
By Jack Brady (NRL.com)
The Dragons are ready to embrace an attacking mentality against the Sea Eagles on Monday night with their spine intact for the first time in consecutive weeks since Round 2.
The Dragons have scored 50 points over the past fortnight – that's 24 per cent of their points scored this season overall – with the likes of Benji Marshall, skipper Gareth Widdop and Mitch Rein finally able to string games together.
Sitting just outside the top eight on the NRL Telstra Premiership on differential, the Dragons have scored the second-fewest amount of points competition-wide in 2016.
Rein believes that has to change as he and his teammates set out to initiate a shift in their mentality.
"We have gained a bit of confidence the past few weeks by playing a bit more attacking football. It's pretty pleasing to score a few more points and it's a step in the right direction to where we want to be," Rein said.
"We haven't backed ourselves in the past so we have gained plenty of confidence in terms of trying a few more things. Benji's hamstring woes were pretty well-documented and it was pretty disruptive to us.
"So to have that rhythm back for the past three weeks has been good and you can see that through our results."
Any member of the Dragons' playing squad will be the first to admit they haven't set the world on fire in any of their games this season.
Yet what they do have confidence in is the fact they are building at the right end of the season after an ultimately mixed first half to their year.
Next up for the Red V is a huge clash with the Sea Eagles at Brookvale Oval on Monday night, a team desperate to combat their seven-game losing streak.
"Even though our defence hasn't been up to scratch, it comes down to our confidence. We feel we're building towards something here. Everything is moving in the right direction at the right end of the year," Rein said.
"If we can keep the momentum up and keep going then it'll be good by the finals. You never know what you're going to get from Manly though at the moment.
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"They took the Cowboys to their limits the other night so it's a good test for us especially leading into the bye."
Off-contract at season's end, Rein – a local Kiama Knights junior – declared he wants to remain in the Red V jumper beyond this year.
"I'm just playing week-to-week really. I wasn't happy with a few performances earlier on but I'm starting to feel like I'm stringing a few together," he said.
"If I keep doing well then something will sort itself out in the near future. It's in the hands of my manager and the Dragons.
"It would be great to stick around but you never know what's going to happen. I'm just not trying to think about it."