Canterbury will draw inspiration from their 2014 NRL finals campaign as they look to put on a similar run from seventh spot.
The Bulldogs slipped to seventh on the ladder when they lost their last two regular season games in 2014, but then won three straight finals to reach the decider.
And while they were eventually beaten by South Sydney, they remain the only team from outside the top four to reach the grand final since the NRL brought in its new finals system in 2012.
Likewise, Canterbury again finished seventh on the ladder this year ahead of Sunday’s elimination final against Penrith after losing their last three matches.
“I’m drawing from that,” five-eighth Josh Reynolds said.
“I know deep down when we do come in as a group and talk about it, that there is still that belief that we really can do it.
“Because everyone’s saying it’s a fairly open comp and we really do believe that.”
The Bulldogs were fourth heading into their second-last round clash against North Queensland at Belmore.
However, after averaging less than 14 points a game across the final seven rounds of the competition, they find themselves out of form and without the opportunity to concede another loss.
But they still believe they can become the first team in 21 years to win from outside the top four.
“We obviously have a tough task to pull ourselves out of this rut, but I really think we have the team to do it,” Reynolds said.
“We were in the four but a couple of shaky games have put us where we are.
“We deserve to be there.”
Canterbury have won six of 10 finals matches since Des Hasler came to the club in 2012, the same year they lost the grand final to Melbourne.