Geelong captain Joel Selwood is unlikely to be rested in the second half of the AFL season as he continues to manage a knee problem.
Cats coach Chris Scott revealed on Tuesday that Selwood has been dealing with a "knee-related issue all year" but insisted his skipper is improving every week.
"He's probably in better shape now than he's been throughout the course of the season," Scott told reporters in Geelong.
"He thought he was better for the week off (during the recent bye) but it's not an issue that one week off is going to fix completely.
"He had a couple of weeks off early in the season with something unrelated.
"It did help that problem a bit but it's not significant enough for us to think that playing is holding him back. If anything he's getting better."
The gun on-baller, who missed the Cats' victories in rounds seven and eight, has been shifted to the wing in 2019 but Scott insisted that change was unrelated to his niggle.
Geelong are optimistic Gary Rohan (concussion) will be cleared to play in Friday night's clash with Adelaide, when Esava Ratugolea is set to return from a hamstring strain.
Midfielder Sam Menegola has resumed training after knee surgery but is still at least two weeks away from returning.
Scott remains unsure when Nakia Cockatoo could be back but suggested the luckless speedster is progressing well and looking "the best he's looked for 12 months".
Rohan was knocked out during the Cats' 11-point loss to Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval, their first defeat in over two months and second for the season.
"Anybody who watched us on the weekend wouldn't be scared of Geelong," Scott said.
"But we do have a team that has improved a lot this year and we feel like there's a lot of improvement left."
Geelong have now lost after their mid-season bye for eight years straight but, as Scott highlighted, their record after those defeats is also remarkable.
"We're focusing on the fact that the game post, post-bye, we've won eight in a row," Scott smirked.
"Because if the (post-bye) curse means something then this must mean something as well, you can't have it both ways."
Scott also cautioned against drawing parallels between the mid-season bye and week off between finals and the regular season.
"It's a very different period," he said.
"The absolute priority is having our list and team in as good a shape as we can, when it really counts.
"Last week was an important game for us but I don't think we'll look back on the season and say that was the most important game in our season. Hopefully."
Australian Associated Press