Canterbury have one month to claim at least one more win to avoid their worst NRL season in 57 years, laying bare the difficult job facing Phil Gould.
Sunday's clash with the Warriors shapes as arguably the Bulldogs' most winnable game on the run home, with matches against Newcastle, Manly and Wests Tigers to follow.
The Bulldogs have won just two games this season, a low not witnessed at the club since 1964 when the Clive Churchill-coached side tasted victory just once in that 18-round season.
In a season of blowouts, the club's for-and-against record of -370 for this year is also their worst since their inaugural 1935 season.
Defensively they have also let in 31.4 points per game – the most of any club since – while scoring just 12.9.
The data comes in the same week Gould sold members his pitch on how to turn the club around in his new role as general manager, with a heavy focus on juniors.
And despite the doom and gloom of 2021, coach Trent Barrett insisted their nightmare year would not result in a hangover that lasts into the preseason.
“Preseason is a long way away, the group that we're going to have on November 1 is completely different than the group we've got now,” Barrett said.
“We tend to not try and talk internally too much about next year, in front of the players in particular.
“We've got up to a dozen blokes possibly not going to be here.
“We owe it to them and they owe it to themselves and their teammates to finish the year well and that's our main focus.
“It has been a challenging year but we'll be better for it.”
The Bulldogs have already signed Matt Burton, Josh Addo-Carr, Matt Dufty, Brent Naden, Tevita Pangai and Paul Vaughan for next season.
They have enhanced every part of their roster with the exception of hooker, where they will keep faith in Jeremy Marshall-King.
Will Hopoate and Dallin Waetene-Zelezniak are among those confirmed to exit Belmore, while the club lost a battle to keep Melbourne-bound Nick Meaney.
In a question-and-answer video with members sent out this week, Gould admitted recent years had been difficult with five wins in their past 40 games.
But he backed the kennel's new arrivals for next season and claimed he could have the club's salary cap shaping the way he wanted by 2023 and 2024.
Primarily his focus would be on making the Bulldogs a “state-of-the-art” club for junior development and pathways, getting value out of their juniors and room to spend money in key positions.
“We're going to get much better value out of our salary cap through developing young kids from junior leagues and junior rep programs,” Gould said in the video to members.
“Hopefully once development kicks in we will get really good value out of it (the salary cap) as well.”Internet Explorer Channel Network