Pardew has rested some of his bigger names throughout the competition but knows Thursday's first leg agaisnt Anzhi Makhachkala represents a real step up in class.
And despite a cushion of just six points on the Premier League's bottom three, the manager has hinted he is ready to reassess his priorities.
He said: "It would be massive if we could beat this team because they are a really strong side.
"It's really now down to where every team left in that Europa League now is focusing on it probably as their primary objective.
"I can't think of too many clubs in it for whom it's not at the top of their agenda, so there's now a real focus on that competition."
Key to Newcastle's hopes, according to Pardew, will be fit-again Yohan Cabaye and Steven Taylor along with January arrival Moussa Sissoko.
Pardew said: "Cabaye has been the most influential player we have had on his return, closely followed by Steven and Moussa. Those three really have lifted the club massively."