Coach Rick Stone and captain Kurt Gidley spoke at the post match press conference following Saturday's loss to the Canberra Raiders at Hunter Stadium.
Before taking the field, Stone acknowledged the Knights were already disadvantaged by the fact a number of players were missing due to injury.
"There were obviously some key quality players that were out and we were down on troops," Stone said.
"There were actually some decent injuries during the game with Jack Stockwell (bicep) and Dave Fa'alogo (hamstring).
"The opposition played alright, I just didn't think we handled the start particularly well at all and particularly in our defence in the middle.
"It was disappointing.”
Stone said fatigue was also a factor in the team's display, but was not satisfied with the Round 13 performance.
"We had a couple of big weeks of travel to Auckland and back but I still think our expectations are a little bit better than that first 15 to 20 minutes that's for sure," he said.
"We were a bit lethargic for sure.
"On the back of what happened last week and the trip and everything, you still expect more at home to be honest.
"We have a few guys playing wounded in Houso (Chris Houston) and Kade Snowden which is not ideal as well.
"We are down on some quality personnel and they are a sizable crew.
"Raiders are one of the biggest packs...and we understand that.
"That's why the resolve and defence becomes even more important. Your attitude in defence is paramount.
"If you haven't got it they roll through your tackles a little bit easier, play the balls become a bit quicker and all of a sudden the momentum will get out of control pretty quickly.
"That's what it is and it can be real cruel in the NRL when you get to that stage and you're down on confidence and down a little bit on resolve and personnel, it can really kick you in the teeth."
Captain Kurt Gidley spoke about the disappointment of letting slip another must win game.
"We spoke about that yesterday before our last training session. They are all important games but this was an important one coming into the bye," Gidley said.
"We haven't had a great couple of months now...and for sure there is pressure on us now.
"We let our fans down and we let ourselves down again for sure.
"To come out and start the game and our coach to say we were lethargic starting the game at home, that's a fairly big disappointment."
The break for the bye is a blessing for the Knights giving players more time to recover from injury.
"Hopefully we a few troops back after the bye, that will be the first point of call,” Stone said.
"Whether Jarrod Mullen and Jeremy Smith are a chance to play, that would be interesting.
"Our forwards stocks are a little bit banged up at the moment.
"We will give it the week to verify the extent of that damage. That will be an important ingredient in how we face up in our first game after the bye."