Ciaran Whelan is concerned for Mayo's 'emotional baggage' while Tomas Ó Sé believes the Westerners are over-dependent on Cillian O'Connor upfront as the Westerners again seek to end their long wait for Sam.
Mayo have come tantalisingly close to ending a now 66-year drought in recent years, losing three of the last five All-Ireland finals - to Dublin last year (after a replay) and in 2013 and to Donegal in 2012.
"I'm interested to see where Mayo are at," Whelan said. "I really wonder how much psychological baggage they are carrying at this stage.
"I've said it before, it reminds me of our Dublin team ten or 12 years ago. They've taken a lot of hammering in the media, and they have that ability to beat anybody on a given day but for me they are just lacking consistency.
"I saw in their body language in the National League that it was really poor in a couple of games, and they are facing a significant challenge. It is going to be interesting to see where Mayo are at this year."
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Ó Sé suggested that a lack of forward quality could be the bigger issue for Stephen Rochford's side.
"It is very hard for people to say whether it is mentally bothering them and players and managers would say it's not, but for me, they will be there or thereabouts but they still don't have the firepower up front," Ó Sé said.
"It is too easy to knock Cillian O'Connor out of it. They don't have the firepower to damage teams.
"One to nine they are as good as Dublin, as good as Kerry, as good as any team in the country. They are excellent but up front I think they lack something."
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