SAM Davies has urged caution from those already celebrating an upsurge at the Dragons, stressing the Rodney Parade region are only just starting to 'dig out of a hole'.

The signs are promising in the east at the start of the Dean Ryan era with the Dragons looking well-drilled, competitive and with a record of 6 wins from 13 games.

They are in good shape to make the quarter-finals of the European Challenge Cup and on Saturday have a chance to enjoy a first ever winning derby period in the Guinness PRO14.

The Dragons edged out the Scarlets thanks to Davies' last-gasp drop goal before being on the wrong side of a tense tussle with Cardiff Blues in the capital.

They now find themselves in the strange position of being favourites to take the spoils against the Ospreys in Newport (kick-off 3pm), with the men from the Liberty Stadium six points behind Ryan's men at the bottom of Conference A and on the back of a 44-0 humiliation in Llanelli.

Dragons supporters are coming to terms with the unfamiliar feeling of encouragement and optimism but their playmaker insists feet are firmly on the ground at the region's training base in Ystrad Mynach.

South Wales Argus:

"We are building something but we are not getting ahead of ourselves, we are digging ourselves out of what has been a hole and that journey has only just started in our opinion.

"A key point that Dean made earlier is about making sure we are not getting ahead of ourselves. People are starting to maybe now put us as favourites in games, which doesn't happen for the Dragons normally.

"Our focus is within the group and on how we can motivate ourselves to turn up on Saturday and put in a performance which is worthy of a win.

"It's going to be a good test of us, in previous years people would have written us off in this game. It's going to be interesting to see how we cope with people expecting a bit more from us this time.

"I feel that we are making strides in the right direction, but Saturday is a massive test for us to see if we can keep going in the right direction."

Davies' half-back partnership with in-form Rhodri Williams has been key in the Dragons' encouraging start to 2019/20.

Convincing the fly-half to make the move from the Ospreys has worked for both parties with the 26-year-old featuring for Wales off the bench in the uncapped November game with the Barbarians, his first international outing since the summer of 2017.

South Wales Argus:

Davies has shouldered a heavy burden because of Josh Lewis' summer knee injury, which ruled last season's number 10 out of the whole campaign, and he is enjoying steering the ship.

"It was a tough decision at the time but it's quite blatant to see that it was a good decision for me," he said.

"But I don't want things to plateau at any stage, I want it to keep getting better and better and better. That's what my focus is on.

"I've played a lot of rugby but I am getting managed well, I am not having to do all the running and all the reps (in training). There are boys jumping in and helping me out," he said.

"We had a few days off (after Boxing Day) and I am fresher for this derby than to the other two. I am in a good place."

Davies and the Dragons are in a good place, the Ospreys are in a bad place so good time to face his old teammates?

"Quite the opposite, actually," he said. "There is a resurgence that's going to come from them, knowing all the boys down there.

"Obviously they lost quite heavily against the Scarlets but I have got mates down there and I am sure they are going to pull themselves out of the hole, just not this weekend hopefully!"