Melbourne have put criticism about their inability to close out games aside as they look to maintain their position on top of the Australian Super Rugby conference with a win over the Jaguares.
They will take on the Argentine side at AAMI Park on Saturday afternoon without Wallabies utility back Reece Hodge, who has a slight hamstring injury.
After surrendering a handy lead against the Hurricanes, which followed a similar capitulation against the Waratahs, there were questions asked about the Rebels' title credentials.
Coach Dave Wessels said that while he attributed the NSW loss to poor preparation, the strength of the Hurricanes, who won the title in 2016 and reached the finals last year, shouldn't be forgotten.
"It's unrealistic for anybody to consider that we are going to come from the team that finished last and beat the most successful team in the history of Super Rugby in just six games," Wessels told AAP.
"While we haven't closed the gap on them (the Hurricanes) now, our job is to figure out if we see them later in the year in a play-off game, what have we learnt out of this experience.
"We feel that if we keep improving the way we have we can be very competitive by that stage."
With Hodge expected to sidelined for one week, Tom English will come back into the centres to partner Bill Meakes.
Returning from the bye Wessels said the remainder of the squad was fighting fit including skipper Adam Coleman, who had been playing with a sternum injury.
The Jaguares had a tight loss to the Crusaders last round, leaving Wessels wary of what they would bring to the match.
"I think they are a very good side. They are a virtual Test team," Wessels said.
"Some of the scores you've seen have flattered the opposition because it's been much closer than reflected on the scoreboard.
"It's a very important game to us as we had a great start to the season and then had a break, so it's important to pick up where we left off."