With one win from the previous 10 games leading up to the bye, Hawthorn's output was testing the faith of even the most passionate and resilient of the brown and gold army.

Hawks fans had braced themselves for a season not necessarily filled with the success that they had become accustomed to of late, but one win in 10 weeks was a hard pill to swallow even with the best mental preparation.

Things had to change and, we're pleased to say, they have.

We've taken a look at the numbers to distinguish what exactly has 'changed' in order to quickly catapult the Hawks back into a competitive, good-to-watch outfit.

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The first statistic for you is simple in theory, but alarming in terms of how quickly the side has been able to rectify a problematic issue - stop the bleeding of inside 50s against and start generating more of our own.

Prior to the bye, the Hawks were averaging just 46 forward 50 entries per game.

That makes it difficult to kick a winning score when the AFL average of scoring per inside 50 sits at just shy of 40 per cent.  

Thankfully, that rate of inside 50 production has increased dramatically over the past three weeks, rising to 56 per game - 10 more looks a game than pre-bye.

At the other end of the ground, no team has conceded more inside 50s than Hawthorn, with opposition sides averaging a 57.4 entries per game against the Hawks.

But this number has also undergone enormous improvement since the bye, with the per game average pre-bye sitting at a whopping 60.1 inside 50s against while, in the past three weeks, that number has fallen to 48.6.

In the last three rounds, the make-up of the Hawks backline has continued to excite the Hawks faithful with its abundance of youthful promise.

Buoyed by the return of Will Day in Round 13, Jack Scrimshaw, Changkuoth Jiath and Day have emerged as intercepting kings with that trifecta leading the side in each of the last three weeks for intercept possessions.

Hawthorn's top three intercept possession players from Rounds 13-15

  Round 13 Round 14 Round 15
Changkuoth Jiath 10 8 9
Jack Scrimshaw 10 11 9
Will Day 6 7 10

 

Pull the magnifying glass back further to reveal the entire season and the good news keeps coming.

Averaging seven intercept possessions per game each, Jiath and Day sit equal ninth across the competition in this statistic whilst their mate Scrimshaw isn't far behind in 20th spot. 

When you're sitting in second position for disposals league-wide on the season, whilst averaging of 34 touches a game, you've generally put together a pretty solid campaign. 

But Tom Mitchell has made an already impressive year even better in recent weeks.

At the bye, Mitchell was averaging 33.4 touches per outing, continuing to amass numbers that few others in the history of the game have been able to. 

But, if there was a knock on his first half of the year, it was the influence that these touches were having on games.

Well, however rich this criticism was, Mitchell has eradicated it in the last three weeks. 

Averaging 338 metres gained pre-bye, the 2018 Brownlow Medallist has given that rate an almighty lift, going at 429.7m post-bye. 

He has gone from recording 12.4 kicks per game to 17.3 in the last few weeks and has also hit the scoreboard in two of the last three weeks after managing just one goal pre-bye.

It's been a pretty resounding response from the superstar. 

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After being unable to surpass the 21-possession mark in any of his nine senior games before the bye, Daniel Howe has since posted games of 23 disposals, 23 disposals and 31 disposals since the mid-season break.

They haven't been cheap possessions either - his last three weeks have seen him average 3.7 inside 50s compared to the 1.7 he was averaging up to Round 11.

His increased workrate can be exemplified by the numbers too - 11.1 uncontested possessions pre-bye, 20 uncontested possessions post-bye.

Dylan Moore has been one of the feel-good stories for the Hawks over the course of the whole season, but in particular over the past three rounds.

Since the bye, Moore has kicked seven goals across three games - including a match-defining four-goal haul against the Giants on Sunday.

He now ranks 11th across the league for goals kicked by players aged 25 years or younger on the season - equal with Dee Kysaiah Pickett and ahead of the likes of Jordan De Goey, Isaac Heeney and even Christian Petracca. 

The Hawks have now had eight debutants in 2021, more than any other club in the competition - with one of these coming in the each of the last three weeks. The eight newbies include Tyler Brockman, Connor Downie, Jacob Koschitzke, Emerson Jeka, Ned Reeves and then Jai Newcombe, Lachlan Bramble and Denver Grainger-Barras since the bye. 

The most recent three have all shown their wares at senior level almost instantly, whether it be Newcombe's record-breaking tackling haul in Round 13, Denver's aerial presence in Round 15 and Bramble's dash and foot skills over his two appearances. 

The team seems to have lifted amidst the excitement of these fresh faces bursting onto the scene.