This time last year Adam Reynolds was knocking down the door and demanding to be selected for NSW.
A failed finals series and a slow start to the season later, the NSW halfback position isn't so heatedly debated.
Reynolds knows his less than impressive finals campaign for South Sydney last year didn't do him any favours when it comes to Blues selection, especially given his counterpart Mitchell Pearce led his Roosters to premiership glory.
He knows a strong start this year for the Bunnies could have put him well and truly on the radar.
And even though it looks like NSW coach Laurie Daley is going to stick with incumbent Pearce for the series opener at Suncorp Stadium on May 28, it hasn't deterred Reynolds from setting his sights on playing in this year's State of Origin series.
"There's three games in this series and I want to play in one of them," the City Origin halfback said.
"To get a game for NSW is the ultimate goal. I'm very passionate about NSW. It seemed so close but so far away last year. It was a big learning curve. Then to have what happened in the semi-finals has made me really hungry.
"As a team and as an individual I wasn't happy with what happened for Souths. I had a shocker in that semi-final. We let Manly off the hook and let them back in the game."
While publicly he wasn't giving much away, Reynolds was bitterly disappointed not to be given the opportunity to show what he can do in the Origin arena last year.
He never spoke to Daley, but club coach Michael Maguire pulled him aside to discuss what areas of his game needed to improve if he was to challenge Pearce for the NSW No.7 jumper.
"I spoke to Madge about it and what I need to do to put my hand up and get picked," Reynolds said.
"We sat down and he told me that I just needed to start being a bit smarter at times and controlling the game a bit more.
"He said I needed to be very vocal on the field and pushing the big boys around. All that stuff comes when you work hard and practice at it."
Reynolds made his representative debut for City Origin in Coffs Harbour last year, proving he wasn't overawed by the occasion with a strong showing.
Daley has often said Reynolds needed the experience of finals football under his belt before he would be given a chance at Origin.
Reynolds' two attempts at finals football haven't gone to script. The first ended in disaster when he left the field prematurely in the preliminary final against the Bulldogs in 2012 with a hamstring injury.
Last year's campaign wasn't much better, unable to make an impact when his team needed him as they bowed out to Manly in the preliminary final for the second consecutive season.
Reynolds admits he has learned that a different style of rugby league is needed for the pressure-cooker matches.
"It's all about completions," he said.
"Finals and big games are a totally different game to rounds one to 26. Completions are so important in big games, along with a kicking game. You can win semi-finals and grand finals on the back of kicking games."