Wicks' words of wisdom

Even if he's never asked for it, Eels prop Danny Wicks has received plenty of advice since being sentenced to 18 months in prison for supplying and being in possession of prohibited drugs. 

But over five years on, now he's in a position to be doing the talking. 

The entire Parramatta Eels squad was at Westmead Children's Hospital on Tuesday afternoon for their annual Easter Egg drop, and the former Novocastrian won't be short of some words of wisdom for those in need of it. 

"If I can help someone, I'm more than happy to do it," he told reporters.

"I made a mistake. And the best advice I ever got was that the smarter people learn from them. So I'd like to put myself in that category. That's me – I want to help someone out if I can."

It was exactly two years to the day last Sunday when Wicks first stepped out of the gates of Glen Innes Correctional Centre and onto a path towards NRL redemption. 

Not that the 29-year-old has been counting. 

"[It's] nothing to celebrate. Anything reflective to do with that, you wouldn't celebrate. I'm at a different point than what I was five or six years ago," he said. 

"I do reflect back, but I don't let it hold me back, you know what I mean? I put my head on the pillow, I'll sleep very well at night. I've got nothing to hide. 

"The rest of it was out in the media and that's how it all panned out, which is fair enough – I'd done the wrong thing. But the past is the past. I wouldn't even think about it being two years ago, because my thoughts are on Monday night [and] the Tigers."

Eels skipper Tim Mannah describes his new teammate a "real man's man". Since training with the squad last year, Wicks has not only impressed the club with his commitment to the gym, but his efforts in breaking records inside them too. 

"He's a hard worker on the field and he's one of those guys that's very athletically gifted. In the gym, he's almost got the records for everything, on the field he's fast and powerful," Mannah said. 

"Athletically he's very strong. And he's starting to really find his feet now in first grade again. He's definitely a real asset for us."

But Wicks said his abilities in the gym were irrelevant when compared to the heroics of halfback Chris Sandow in last weekend's upset of defending premiers South Sydney. 

"I had that natural ability when I was a bit heavier. Now, being a bit lighter, you capitalise on it I suppose," he said. 

"But records mean nothing at the end of the day. You might be strong here, but if you're not going to put it on the field, there's no point being able to push 170 kilos on the chest or squat 200 kilos. 

"You've got blokes like Chrissy Sandow – repeat effort, repeat effort on the weekend. Those blokes aren't throwing the biggest weight around, but they've got the biggest hearts."

While Eels fans will be buoyed by handing the Rabbitohs their first defeat of the season, Wicks said there was much more improvement left in the squad. 

"We might've knocked off the premiers, but no one sees it as the milestone. It was a stepping stone, if anything" he said. 

"We've done video and we've got so much improvement left in us. That's what the focus is. The confidence is there within each other, but we need to take it week in, week out. We want to be a force to be reckoned with."