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Mercedes is definitely favoring Lewis until the title is sewn up. Sochi is an example of that.

Bottas knows he needs to be on the front foot.
He got his new contract because of his strong drives in the start of the season; and should have had wins to his name this season (let down by bad luck, or bad calls). But since then, he’s pretty much been in Lewis’ shadow.
And with Ocon and Russell wanting a spot in the team, Bottas has to prove he’s the one Mercedes want behind the wheel.

Maybe a change in persona could be what he needs.
Right now barely anyone looks at Bottas. Even if he gets pole, or is leading the race, people are looking elsewhere. Its like he blends into the scenery.
I get he’s not a main player in the championship. But I feel he needs to display a bit of grit.
Otherwise he will just be seen as “the other Mercedes driver”.