Dafydd James has called on Wales interim coach Rob Howley to pick players on form when he announces his Six Nations squad on Tuesday.
Wales start their campaign against Italy on February 5.
"It would be nice if Rob went away from the status quo and picked players who perform on a weekly basis," former winger James told BBC Wales.
"If you're young and good enough, you've got to play. Whoever's playing well needs the opportunity. I'd like to see Rob be a bit bolder in his selection policy and give a couple of the young guys who have excelled throughout the season thus far and give them a chance to play on the big arena."
James said Wasps flanker Thomas Young could be in contention to be named in the squad, but would have to be a wildcard pick as he plays outside of Wales.
"I'd like to see him brought in to the squad. It's always difficult, trying to build a team into a winning mindset from the word go. I think you need the right blend. Whether you put them on the bench and bring them on gradually as the game is evolving," James said.