I may be wrong and football has certainly moved on. I just remember lower league football having teams that bulldozed their way through.
Age means beer addled memories merge into each other and details are long gone, but I do remember Bury and Huddersfield using the 'big uns' solution to go up. There were certainly teams in the Conf Nat last time that simply bullied us, as we had some great players who were just too young and not big enough to dominate set pieces.
That said, your point about last season is valid and based on facts, whereas mine is just pessimism. I do love being proved wrong though!!