Brisbane No.9 Billy Walters has made his critics eat their words and credits having two famous hookers for uncles for keeping him on track.
The 29-year-old will play his first NRL grand final on Sunday against Penrith after a career-best season.
His uncles Kerrod Walters and Steve Walters were wonderful running rakes with plenty of craft.
Kerrod, the twin of Billy's father and Broncos coach Kevin Walters, won two titles with the Broncos and Steve celebrated three at Canberra.
"Kerrod and Steve were both hookers in the NRL who changed the game and they give me advice as much as they can," Billy said.
"Kevvie tells them sometimes to back off and let me find my own feet but they are good to lean on if I have any questions.
"Every few weeks they will send a message just to tell me I'm doing a good job, and to keep doing what I'm doing.
"Kerrod always tells me to run ... that the more I run the more dangerous I will be."
Billy has done plenty of that this year but he's done it under the microscope as the coach's son.
He'd only played 12 NRL games at Wests Tigers and Melbourne before joining the Broncos. He's played 48 since to be one of the most improved players in the NRL.
"That's why it would be great for the family if the Broncos win on Sunday," Kerrod Walters told AAP.
"There has been a lot of pressure on Kevvie and Billy from the word go. Kevvie picked him and people said he did that because he is his son.
"Billy has proved he is there because he can play. The only way to shut people up is let your actions speak louder than words and that is what he has done."
Penrith's Ivan Cleary also coaches his son Nathan but Kerrod said that was "a different case".
"When Ivan came back to Penrith to coach, Nathan had already established himself as a good number seven," he said.
"When Kevvie brought Billy back (from the Tigers) there was pressure straight away because Billy hadn't really established himself as a top first grader but he's done that. He has made people eat their words."
Billy said his father, who he always refers to as 'Kevvie' in a professional sense, gave him some tough love..
"When I came here, I considered myself a hooker/half," Billy said.
"I did a lot of training in the halves, but three quarters of the way through last year, Kevvie said 'no more halves'.
"If I wanted to play halves, he said, 'you will be playing at Wynnum'. He said, 'you have to focus on dummy half'.
"I spent the whole pre-season trying to nail my role and playing with a great forward pack has given me confidence."
Kerrod has liked what he has seen.
"Billy has become a real threat. To his credit, initially he just focused on getting his defence and passing game spot on," Kerrod said.
"Now he's taken his running game to another level."