Seasoned Wallabies Adam Ashley-Cooper and Wycliff Palu will return to the injury-depleted Australian side for the Test against New Zealand this weekend.
The Brisbane clash is a dead rubber in the annual Bledisloe Cup tussle between the rivals, with the All Blacks winning the opening two games, but Saturday's match is seen as an important test for Deans and his troubled side.
Australia finished second in the recent Rugby Championship tournament, ahead of Argentina and South Africa but lagging behind world champions New Zealand after a humiliating 22-0 defeat in their second meeting.
Deans has presided over just three victories from 17 games against the ascendant All Blacks in the past four years and scrutiny has mounted during an inconsistent 2012 campaign marred by injuries to several key players.
Accusations of a "toxic" and dysfunctional environment within the camp from controversial playmaker Quade Cooper have been a further distraction.
Deans welcomed the return to the starting XV of Ashley-Cooper, sidelined with concussion after last month's 31-8 trouncing by the Springboks, and Palu, who missed the Rugby Championship due to a Super Rugby shoulder injury.
"They're both proven Test performers so it is good to have them back," the Wallabies coach said.
Deans was especially pleased to see the versatile Ashley-Cooper back in action, describing his skill and 72-cap experience as an invaluable asset for the relatively young side.
Ashley-Cooper has scored six tries against the Kiwis - only two other Australian players in history have a better record - and Deans will be hoping he is in top form with New Zealand on an uninterrupted 16-game winning streak.
Although he has also featured at fullback and centre this year, Ashley-Cooper ran from the wing in the third Test against Wales in Sydney, and also in the opening Bledisloe Cup Test of the year.
Palu featured in all three Tests against Wales in June before being forced to miss the entire Rugby Championship due to a shoulder nerve injury, suffered during the penultimate game of the Waratahs season.
While deprived of match fitness due to the enforced break, Palu was able to train through much of his layoff, with Deans suggesting the big No.8 was 'champing at the bit' to get started again.
"The All Blacks are the benchmark and proved it again through the Rugby Championship. They are a step up from where we've been," said Deans.
"But the guys have shown a lot of resilience over the last two months, and they're excited about the opportunity ahead of them on the weekend."
A change up front sees Benn Robinson and James Slipper swap roles, with Robinson returning to the run on side, while Slipper will provide fresh impetus from the bench.
Waratahs wing Drew Mitchell is another welcome return from injury for Deans, starting on the bench in place of Digby Ioane, who hurt his knee in the Wallabies' last outing, when they beat Argentina 25-19 in Rosario.
Fiji-born loose forward Radike Samo is being rested ahead of Australia's tour of Europe next month, with Palu taking his place.
Mike Harris retains goal-kicking duties at fullback after impressing in Argentina, with veteran lock Nathan Sharpe to skipper the side for what will be his 112th Test cap for Australia.
Australia: 15 Mike Harris, 14 Nick Cummins, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Pat McCabe, 11 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 10 Kurtley Beale, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Scott Higginbotham, 5 Nathan Sharpe, 4 Sitaleki Timani, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Tatafu Polota Nau, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 James Hanson, 17 James Slipper, 18 Kane Douglas, 19 Dave Dennis, 20 Liam Gill, 21 Brett Sheehan, 22 Drew Mitchell.
Date: Saturday, October 20
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Kick-off: 20.00 (11.00 GMT)
Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Jaco Peyper (South Africa), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
TMO: Matt Goddard (Australia)