Gold Coast coach Stuart Dew says the club won't rush its current rebuild and has forecast that major inroads might not occur for another 12 months.
The Suns finished 17th last year – Dew's first in charge – and now on the back of 15 straight losses, appear headed for the wooden spoon in 2019.
Despite the predicament, Dew said things are on the improve – slowly.
"We made some decisions at the end of last year we knew might have caused a bit of pain this year in terms of win-loss, but we think it will hold us in good stead," he said.
"The opportunity some players have got on the back of those decisions, we've seen some growth we're aware of, externally they may not see the results of that for another 12 months.
"We are confident in decisions we've made, and in the end our leaders like Dave (Swallow) and Jarrod (Witts) and Touk (Miller), the fact they've seen what we can do, they've signed on (long-term)."
One of those "decisions" was delisting midfielder Jarryd Lyons, who will wear his new Brisbane jumper against Gold Coast on Saturday.
Lyons has had a terrific first season for his new club, fitting in nicely alongside Dayne Zorko and Lachie Neale.
"We're not surprised by how he's playing," Dew said of Lyons.
"For us it was about finding out about some other players, guys like Will Brodie, Jack Bowes playing midfield, Darcy Macpherson playing midfield, Brayden Fiorini playing midfield.
"It was a decision we knew in the short-term would look like it does right now … if some of those players don't get those opportunities, then we're looking at some retention issues.
"We knew we were in a different place to what Brisbane were.
"I think we can look back in two or three years that it'll be a win-win."
Bowes was having a fabulous third year until a quad injury derailed his season, while Macpherson and Fiorini will arguably be in the club's top five on best and fairest night.
Ahead of the 18th QClash, Dew said seeing Brisbane's rise was "good for football in this state".
Counterpart Chris Fagan, sitting alongside Dew, had some encouraging words for his rival coach after helping his team rise from 10 wins in his first two years in charge into the finals this year.
"If I was Stuey I'd be feeling positive about where his team is at and just hang in there because you never know when it can turn around for you, and sometimes it can happen reasonably quickly like it has for us this year," he said.