Lucky jocks behind young Lion's rise?

Brisbane young gun Alex Witherden is clearly a superstitious type, crediting his rich vein of form to a special pair of underwear.

Witherden, drafted at pick No.23 last year, has made a profound impact in just four games with the Lions this year, averaging 25 disposals.

But the Geelong Falcons product said he's had a little help from a special set of undies.

"I've got a pair of underwear I wear every week. If I play a bad game, I'll change them," Witherden told ESPN.

"I've had the same pair for a couple of weeks now. I nearly changed them after last weekend. It wasn't one of my better games."

Witherden's path to the AFL hasn't been as trouble-free as others before him.

The injury-ravaged teen had a double hip arthroscopy at 16. Then as he got his body right for the all-important under-18 season, Witherden suffered a serious compound leg fracture that almost derailed his top-flight ambitions.

"Tim Taranto, who's at the Giants, tackled me at a stoppage and my leg crumbled underneath me," Witherden said.

Complications post-surgery extended his time on the sidelines.

"It was a really tough time. There was a lot of doubt. I didn't know if I was good enough to play senior footy at AFL level," he told ESPN.

But luckily Witherden had enough credits in the bank to cash on draft night, being snapped up by the Lions with pick No.23 in the 2016 draft.

Yet, residual effects from the leg injury saw him injure his hamstring during the preseason.

"Fages [coach Chris Fagan] kept getting me in saying: 'We've just got to get a month of footy in you because you haven't played for 12 months'," he said.

The difficulties have helped build a level of resilience in the 18-year-old that is now standing him in good stead.

Witherden says the youthful Lions will be a feared unit in years to come with its impressive list of youngsters.

No longer are the Lions a club for potential draftees to avoid, with new leaders - Fagan and football general manager David Noble - intent on making it an attractive, destination club.

"Talking to the boys who were around last year, they had a similar sort of feeling that there was a bit of disharmony, a lack of communication around the club, it was sort of a bit of a rabble," he said.

"The group's really tight-knit and we do nearly everything together. Most of the boys are from interstate and we're inseparable."