Contrasting NRL ladder positions count for little, according to Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy as his side prepares to host Canterbury at AAMI Park on Sunday afternoon.
The unbeaten Storm sit at the top of the competition while the Bulldogs only chalked up their first win last round, against the Wests Tigers.
But Bellamy is a fan of the Bulldogs and says there's no chance his team will be taking them lightly, even without their injured first-choice playmaker Kieran Foran.
The Storm had one late change with representative winger Josh Addo-Carr a late withdrawal for personal reasons, with his place taken by exciting 20-year-old Ryan Papenhuyzen on debut.
"They've obviously lost a lot good players and experienced players with guys like (David) Klemmer and (Aaron) Woods and the Morris brothers (Josh and Brett) but the experienced guys who are left are playing really well," Bellamy said.
"And you throw in there some really talented kids ... they had a tough start the first two weeks but they were ultra-impressive last week.
"There's no feeling this week that we're playing a side that's been weakened through the off-season."
The Storm are sitting pretty amongst two other teams with the third best completion rate, although Bellamy said they were still guilty of some mid-match hiccups.
The Bulldogs however are clear at the top of the completion rankings, leaving Bellamy envious. They also boast a winning head-to-head record against Melbourne - the only NRL club able to claim such a stat - and have won their last three games at AAMI Park.
"Their ball control is exceptional and it's not as if they stick it up their jumper and run, they actually throw some good shape and some good attack at you," he said.
Foran's place will be taken by former Knight Jack Cogger, with Bellamy saying he used to play against his father, Western Suburbs club legend Trevor Cogger.
He said 21-year-old Cogger was up to the task.
"Jack hasn't got quite as much hair as his dad, who had flowing blond locks in his day," Bellamy said.
"We saw quite a bit of him in Newcastle and he's been around the NRL for a while. He's not a young kid coming in so he will go in there and do a good job for them."
Australian Associated Press