Matt Diskin believes the Bulls are capable of causing a few surprises in 2013 – despite a lack of numbers in their squad.
New coach Francis Cummins has seen a raft of players leave since the end of last season, including forwards Bryn Hargreaves, Olivier Elima, Craig Kopczak and Tom Burgess.
He has since promoted three juniors into the first-team squad, taken Warrington duo Matty Blythe and Ben Evans on season-long loans and signed Jamie Foster from St Helens on a one-year deal.
Although the squad remains light on numbers, the core has remained intact and joint-skipper Diskin feels the Bulls’ top 17 players can give anyone a game.
The former Leeds hooker, a veteran of four Super League titles during his long association with the Rhinos, said: “It’s a really small squad so we’ve got to look after ourselves and make sure we do the right things physically.
“We’re aware of that and we know we’ve got our backs against the wall with regards to squad size.
“We’re not going to be unrealistic and say we’re going to finish in the top two.
“But you look at the first 17 and it’s a very talented team.
“If we start off on the right footing then we might cause a few surprises.
“Yes, the squad is threadbare, we are under no illusions about that, but with that starting 17 we are certainly capable of rocking a few boats.”
The Bulls could have been liquidated had Omar Khan not stepped in to buy the club from administrator Brendan Guilfoyle at the beginning of September.
Cummins is now gradually rebuilding the club from the wreckage of administration and the loss of so many players.
At least one new prop is set to be recruited but Diskin echoed his coach’s sentiments about signing the right calibre of player.
Diskin added: “We could bring in players to fill positions where we might be a bit thin but it’s all about building for the future with the right players.
“If the right person comes along that has the right attitude and right frame of mind to improve this team then I’m sure Franny will consider him.”
Meanwhile, the Bulls have sold around 4,300 individual season tickets ahead of the early-bird deadline which runs until 5pm on December 1.
However, it is understood that figure could be closer to 6,000 when corporate sales from the Coral Stand are taken into account.
The club is aiming to sell at least 10,000 season tickets before the 2013 season starts in February.