Midfielder David Mundy says Fremantle's win over Geelong has laid the foundation for the Dockers to extract what they want from the season.
The 32-point victory in captain Matthew Pavlich's 300-game milestone left the Dockers in positive territory at 5-4 ahead of their bye this weekend.
Fremantle have faced nine of the other top 10 sides in their first nine games but their draw now opens up, with a round-11 clash with the Western Bulldogs (away) followed by games against Adelaide (home), Richmond (away), Brisbane (home), West Coast, Melbourne (away), Great-er Western Sydney (home), St Kilda (away) and Carlton (home), before they travel to Simonds Stadium to take on Geelong again in round 20.
Coach Ross Lyon insisted nobody at the club would get ahead of themselves, declaring the competition the most even it has been in years.
But Mundy conceded the win over the Cats had been crucial.
"Earlier in the year we had dug ourselves into a little bit of a hole, losing a couple of gettable games and not playing as well as we would have liked," Mundy said.
"But to go into the break at 5-4 now gives us a great chance in the second half of the year to get what we want out of the season."
Mundy vied for best-on-ground honours with 34 disposals, six clearances and four inside 50s.
But he was full of praise for the courageous effort of Hayden Ballantyne, who was a spark for the Dockers after having surgery on his cheekbone following a heavy hit in the loss to Port Adelaide the previous round.
"He is a fantastic little guy," Mundy said.
"To come in and play, but then put his body on the line and play in the manner he did was a real credit to him and he has built a lot of trust within the playing group.
"He is the kind of guy you want to play with, he puts everything on the line and he is going to give you his all, so the boys really trust him in that."
Mundy also believed tagger Ryan Crowley was back to his best after restricting Cats playmaker Steve Johnson to 20 possessions.
"It's a very important role and I think as a team we have grown a lot in helping him (Crowley) out when he does get caught out," he said.
Mundy admitted it would be nice to keep playing after getting the season back on track, but believed the Dockers would use the bye to their advantage.
"It's good to get the mental break at this stage of the year and the boys to refresh mentally and come back in with a renewed vigour next week," he said.
The 28-year-old Victorian, who is out of contract at the end of the season, said Pavlich's example of loyalty to the club would not come into a decision on his future.
"If I stay and get 300 (games) and six All-Australians and six best and fairests that would be great," Mundy joked.
"But it doesn't go into my thinking at all."