Canberra Raiders coach Ricky Stuart admits his team is in a rut and their spirit is breaking despite making good starts.
If a two-goal lead is a dangerous one in soccer, then a 10-point lead is the Raiders' equivalent.
For the fifth time this season that's at least what they've given up to lose 44-16 to the undermanned Sydney Roosters at Gosford on Saturday night.
It meant the Raiders have lost seven of their past eight games as their NRL season continues to drift away.
And it was all off the back of Roosters fullback James Tedesco.
He sent an injury scare through the NSW Blues State of Origin camp when he went off in the first half with a hip-pointer injury.
But he returned to spark the home side's revival after trailing 10-0 to the Green Machine.
Stuart admitted it had been a tough week, where the club release homesick halfback George Williams, but he felt they'd turned up focused - highlighted by the fact they took the early lead.
He said if he could pinpoint the problem he would've fixed it.
"I thought again we were on control of that game, right up to about 30 minutes and then it got away on us again," Stuart said.
"There's a try off a bomb, [Jordan Rapana] getting stripped for a try - such soft tries that we're letting in.
"Tries that we shouldn't be leaking, easy tries that are breaking our back and when you're in this type of rut it's very easy to find that lack of confidence again.
"We're starting well. We're getting into the game. We're leading and passages of poor play, bad luck, seem to be breaking our spirit."
To make matters worse, the Raiders lost Corey Horsburgh with a dislocated wrist, while Ryan James was sin binned for dropping a knee on Roosters enforcer Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, and Jordan Rapana and Sam Williams were put on report for high contact.
Williams won't have any case to answer.
Raiders winger Bailey Simonsson will have to go through concussion protocols after knocking himself out tackling Joseph Suaalii, while Roosters lock Isaac Liu was taken to hospital with an eye contusion.
Roosters second-rower Nat Butcher was put on report for a crusher tackle on Simonsson and also suffered an ankle injury.
The home side's starting front rowers Waerea-Hargreaves (220 run metres) and Siosiua Taukeiaho (156m) were immense, the former playing the whole 80 minutes.
Once again it had been a promising start for the Green Machine, with both Josh Hodgson and Jack Wighton looking dangerous.
Canberra's English connection has been in the news for all the wrong reasons, but it was that connection that produced the opening try.
Raiders co-captain Elliott Whitehead put in a dainty grubber for Hodgson to run onto.
Hodgson was returning from a one-game suspension and raised some eyebrows when he came out in support of George Williams during the week - also highlighting he might have to leave Canberra if he wasn't able to return to the starting line-up.
He started against the Roosters and he produced a nice cut-out pass for Horsburgh to crash over for his first NRL try and extend the visitor's lead.
But then a disastrous six minutes completely changed the course of the game.
Raiders fullback Caleb Aekins made a meal of a Lachlan Lam bomb, gifting Suaalii his maiden try.
Off the very next set and it was all square, with Tedesco putting any injury concerns behind him - offloading for Lam to cross untouched.
James was sin binned and then instantly the Roosters were over again - Sitili Tupouniua scoring the first of his two tries to give the Tricolours a 16-10 lead at half-time.
A Tedesco catch-and-pass led to Roosters winger Daniel Tupou going over in the corner.
Then some Manu individual brilliance saw him strip Jordan Rapana on the Raiders tryline and score in what seemed like slow motion.
A James try gave the Green Machine some hope of mounting a comeback.
But some more Manu brilliance quickly snuffed it out - catching his own kick to score his second.
Tedesco showed his kicking game, grubbering for Josh Morris to score before Suaalii gave an insight of what's to come putting Tupouniua over.
AT A GLANCE
SYDNEY ROOSTERS 44 (Joseph Manu 2, Sitili Tupouniua 2, Joseph Suaalii, Lachlan Lam, Daniel Tupou, Josh Morris tries; Adam Keighran 6 goals) bt CANBERRA RAIDERS 16 (Josh Hodgson, Corey Horsburgh, Ryan James tries; Sam Williams 2 goals) at Gosford. Referee: Grant Atkins.