Kieran Foran's time at Canterbury will be his last chance to resurrect his injury-plagued NRL career, according to a former Bulldogs premiership winner.
Foran has arrived at Belmore short of fitness having endured quad, hamstring, back and shoulder injuries playing with the Warriors this year, with the latter also cruelling his time at Parramatta in 2016.
Graeme Hughes, who won a premiership with the Bulldogs in 1980, lamented Foran was no longer in his physical prime at just 27 years of age.
Speaking at the Jack Newton Celebrity Classic, Hughes was doubtful of getting a full season out of the New Zealander, who has also been dealing with a series of off-field issues in recent years, including depression.
"I don't think Kieran's got the pace he used to have. He looks to have chronic problems with hamstrings," he told AAP.
"If he's ever going to get his career right, you'd think this is the last throw.
"But he's a very good footballer. He's tough.
"If he stands up and plays the majority of the season, that's a great thing because they've been lacking direction."
Foran expects to sit out pre-season contact work until January.
The club's legendary five-eighth Terry Lamb, who's back at Canterbury to support new coach Dean Pay, noted his less-than-ideal condition.
"He came to us a little bit busted with a few injuries. Great kid, he's just got to get his football going," Lamb told AAP.
"When he's fit, he will be a very good player."
Lamb praised former teammate Pay's early efforts to improve a squad that missed the finals this year for the first time since 2010, leading to coach Des Hasler's sacking.
"Players are a lot fitter than they were last year," Lamb said.
"The game's getting faster and players need to be a lot fitter and that's what Deano's trying to do."
He said their other major signing, Kangaroos prop Aaron Woods, suited Pay's plan to introduce more second-phase play.