WALES prop Leon Brown needs a run of games with the Dragons to develop the dark arts to help him thrive on the international stage, believes boss Dean Ryan.

The tighthead will make his first appearance of the season as a replacement in the United Rugby Championship fixture against Edinburgh at Rodney Parade this evening (kick-off 5.15pm).

Brown was sidelined by a nerve problem after a shoulder 'stinger' suffered on Wales duty last summer.

The prop made his Dragons debut in 2016 and has made 53 club outings to go along with 20 caps.

Brown featured for Ryan's side just eight times last season while playing 10 times for Wayne Pivac with Wales, although just one of those Test appearances was as a starter.

DYNAMIC: Prop Leon Brown scoring for the Dragons against Northampton last season

DYNAMIC: Prop Leon Brown scoring for the Dragons against Northampton last season

"A young player of huge potential who gets on an international bench very quickly is suddenly deprived of one thing that he needs, which is games, experiences and mistakes," said the Dragons director of rugby.

"You can't ignore Leon, he is a huge presence with huge potential and that has accelerated him into the international arena.

"What you also have to be aware of is how you make Leon better, and underpinning that potential with lots of games is crucial.

"That's what we will try to do and it's been difficult through the last 18 months but I feel we did get a rhythm of games going.

"We need to get a rhythm of games going again and make the level of competition around him stronger so that he is driving all the time to get better.

"This next phase of games is a big window for Leon to really gather some experiences that I hope will propel him back into the Wales squad."

South Wales Argus: Wales prop Leon Brown tackles England's Joe MarlerWales prop Leon Brown tackles England's Joe Marler

Brown made 11 appearances in his first full season as a senior player in 2017/18 and enjoyed 13 outings in the next campaign.

He suffered disappointment in his bid for the World Cup in 2019 but responded superbly, playing 17 times under Ryan.

Last season he established himself as Pivac's bench option in the Six Nations title triumph.

"Sometimes you just have to wind the clock back, how is this person learning? How is he going to get stuff wrong if that's the only window he is getting to learn," said Ryan.

"We would look at this next six to 10 weeks as a real opportunity to learn and find that form through playing.

"For the World Cup with Wales you'd want Leon to have two seasons of 15-upwards games to have enough experience."