Canberra star John Bateman is widely considered the NRL's signing of the year and the Raiders aren't just reaping the rewards of his individual brilliance.
Bateman made an immediate impact at Canberra after arriving from Wigan and the second-rower has starred in his maiden NRL season.
Canberra co-captain Jarrod Croker said the England international had brought a "massive change in mentality" to the Green Machine in 2019.
The Raiders have been inside the top four almost all season and only have to win three of their remaining seven games to play finals for the second time in seven years.
The success has come on the back of a new-found defence, which Croker said Bateman ruthlessly leads.
"He's been good. He's got a lot of raps and deservedly so. We've had a massive change in mentality and it's come off the back of him," Croker said.
"I think Ryan Sutton has been great too. Our new guys have bought in really well, guys like Charnze (Nicoll-Klokstad) and Bailey (Simonsson), they really fit into the culture and someone like Batey does lead that.
"His mentality is he's very aggressive defensively, he carries the ball hard, he's a hard man to tackle and wants to win every little play he's involved in."
Elliott Whitehead packs down in the scrum alongside Bateman and said he's not surprised to see his England teammate dominate the NRL.
"I knew what he was going to bring to this team and he's showed everyone what he's capable of doing," Whitehead said.
"He carries on a bit but he does bring a lot of energy and wants to win, that's what he brings and gets all the other boys rallied around him.
"Ryan (Sutton) has also brought a lot to our team and brings energy as well as John, and is a winner. He's come from Wigan where he's won a few grand finals, so he knows what it takes to win those tough games."
The fourth-placed Raiders can secure a two-win buffer from the chasing pack if they win a third straight game by beating Penrith on Sunday.
Australian Associated Press