Essendon coach Ben Rutten says he's wary of the threat a reinvigorated North Melbourne will pose in their AFL clash on Sunday.
The Bombers (3-6) are coming off a win over Fremantle and will be desperate to back up against the bottom-placed Kangaroos (1-8), who sealed their first points of the season with a comeback win over Hawthorn.
"We're expecting them at their best," Rutten said.
"They've proven over ... pretty well all games this season they've been really competitive for large chunks of the game.
"They've had a couple of periods throughout games that have hurt them but they've been getting better.
"For their group to be able to get over the line last week, that'll do a lot for their belief and their confidence.
"So we're well aware of what North are capable of and we're expecting that for four quarters."
North Melbourne counterpart David Noble said the Kangaroos hadn't gotten caught up in their first win and were focused on backing up at Marvel Stadium on Sunday.
"We're owning what we're doing and how we're going about it," Noble said.
"We made some bold decisions last week with the number of players that we've tipped out but what you're seeing is the elevation of some young talent that's really exciting."
Noble estimated the Kangaroos had only 26-28 players available for selection - largely through collision injuries - but played down the limited numbers and said he relished seeing young players step up.
"What we've looked on is the opportunity it's created for (Will) Phillips, (Tom) Powell, (Charlie) Lazzaro, (Jack) Mahony, Curtis Taylor, Tarryn (Thomas)," he said.
"It's allowed us to play those guys through there and experience, through playing some really good teams, some key roles that we see (them) in, in the future.
"So that's probably been more our focus - what we can do, not what we can't."