St George Illawarra prop Paul Vaughan says James Graham's immediate influence at the Dragons has lifted his own form into the best he's enjoyed during his career.
A powerhouse Dragons forward pack has played a significant role in their victories over the Brisbane Broncos and Cronulla Sharks to start the Telstra Premiership season.
Vaughan was acknowledged for his breakthrough 2017 season with the Dragons, one that put him on the verge of State of Origin selection.
Vaughan says Graham's influence has already taken his own game to new heights.
"I'm playing the best footy that I have since I've moved to the Dragons," he said.
"I think we [Vaughan and Graham] are complementing each other pretty well at the moment. He is a very energetic player and he does all the one percenters well, whereas I can sort of learn to do that a little bit better.
"Communication is another thing that he's really big on. When I get fatigued, my communication isn't that great; I don't really talk a whole lot where I probably should be, so I've learnt to do that a bit better as well."
Vaughan still has his sights set on an Origin jersey, and with the backing of coach Paul McGregor and his side performing well, that opportunity is at arm's length.
"Within myself, I know the kind of football I can play and the coach has given me every opportunity to do that. He's given me a lot of minutes and he's been unreal for my game because he has a lot of confidence in me," he said.
"As a team, if we're performing week in and week out playing good footy, it gives everyone in the team the chance to play those representative games.
"I just want to be consistently playing well week in and week out."
With the Dragons riding high after two wins, Vaughan said maintaining consistency would be the focus heading into their clash with the Gold Coast Titans in Toowoomba on Sunday.
"With video today, there was a big emphasis on being consistent," he said.
"It's a funny word, everyone throws it around but if you get it throughout the season, it’s obviously going to be very beneficially for you.''