HE ADMITS at times to harbouring self-doubt, but North Melbourne recruit Billy Hartung is ready to use his licence for more aggression as he eyes a berth for round one.
On the eve of his fifth season, the 23-year-old believes a second chance under Brad Scott has him primed for a breakout season starting on Saturday against Gold Coast.
"He's really given me the licence to take the game on, break the lines, link up and give that run and carry," Hartung told AFL.com.au.
"I guess coming from Hawthorn there were times I wouldn't back myself and take the game on.
"I think it's being a bit more aggressive with the way I play footy (at the Roos)."
And he has already begun to seize the opportunity to go from bit-part player to a weekly contributor on the wing, averaging 16 disposals and a goal from his two pre-season hit-outs.
"I just want to prove to people what I can do. I feel comfortable at the level, hopefully it's the year I can show that," Hartung said.
"I really feel like I want to contribute to the team this year, not just play games but help the team win games."
WATCH: Hartung burns Demons with blistering pace
An apprenticeship under some of this generation's greatest players has turned the speedster from understudy to leader.
"I've been pretty fortunate to be at Hawthorn for the last four years, learning off the guys like Sam Mitchell, Luke Hodge and Jordan Lewis," Hartung said.
"I feel I can teach the younger guys at North Melbourne what it was like with them."
Coming off a rollercoaster off-season where he was no longer required at Hawthorn has only made Hartung hungrier for his second coming.
"It was a frustrating off-season last year. I didn't really know what was going to happen and it was all up in the air for quite a while," he said.
"I went away on holidays during the trade period, came back and had a chat with the club and told me I was being delisted.
"Once it got to that stage I was nervous about what was next, but grateful North was able to pick me up in the national draft."
Selected with the penultimate pick in the 2017 NAB AFL Draft, Hartung has earned a two-year contract as he looks to add to his 63 games in four years at Waverley.