Exeter captain Dean Mumm says it will be hard for him to reclaim his place in the side as he returns from injury.
The Australian international forward and returns to the Exeter side in the LV= Cup clash with Gloucester on Saturday.
"It is going to be hard to get back in," Mumm told BBC Sport.
"It makes it important this weekend to put a good performance together as a team because that's the best way to put yourself forward individually."
Mumm and signed a new contract last year.
In his absence, Exeter have ended the first block of Premiership games in third place and won one of their two European Challenge Cup pool matches.
"It's the longest time I've been off in my professional career," said Mumm, who and led them to the
"It's not been ideal watching the lads, but the good news is they've been going well. It would have been much harder looking at a team that wasn't performing."
Exeter will rest much of their first-choice squad for the LV= Cup match, but Mumm says despite it being a lower key encounter than a league or European game, he is still apprehensive after so much time off.
"You can put all the bravado and whatever into it, but the reality is until you make those first couple of tackles you really know you're going to get into it," said the 30-year-old.
"Mentally you need to be right, but there is a lot of apprehension.
"But the thing in the end which you can take a bit of solace from is that you've done it many times before, so mentally you know how to do it."