Guerra looking to own middle

Disappointed in last week's effort, the nib Newcastle Knights forward pack is looking to be proactive in their approach against the Penrith Panthers.

Recently moved to lock, Aidan Guerra stated that Nathan Brown had impressed upon the team during the week the high standards players need to hold themselves to, especially in the opening minutes of the game.

"We spoke about our standards and what they mean to us," Guerra said following Captain's Run on Thursday.

"Browny (Nathan Brown) brought in a group of players that he thinks will drive those standards this week... and help us beat a formidable Penrith side.

"The responsibility has been put on us middles to work really hard and try to get the game off to a good start. Last week we didn't do that, so this week we are going to rectify that."

While Jamie Buhrer was dropped back to 18th man, Guerra is excited to see what impact Danny Levi can have from the bench to complement Slade Griffin.

"I think he (Brown) wanted to bring Danny in to offer a little bit more around the nine. The amount of work that Slade Griffin gets through, he can always use a break, and hopefully with Danny's experience he will be able to bring on a bit of spark."

Although initially sceptical about Trent Merrin's quick return from injury, Guerra is still mindful of the influence Merrin can have around the ruck.

"He (Merrin) is one of those players who can change the game with his footwork around the ruck. His ability to bring people on to the ball outside of him and break tackles is impressive and has earned him representative duties."