Mitch McGovern before the Opening Round match between Brisbane and Carlton at The Gabba, March 8, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

DEFENDER Mitch McGovern is confident Carlton's early bye won't halt its momentum when the high-flying Blues attempt to continue their red-hot start against North Melbourne.

Carlton earned nailbiting wins over Brisbane and Richmond in quick succession to claim a 2-0 start to the season, then had a bye in round two due to their participation in Opening Round.

It means the Blues, who were last in action on March 14, will have had 15 days between games when they return to action on Good Friday.

"We talked about this last year as well," McGovern said.

"A lot of the teams lost off the bye and I think we might have been one of the only teams to win off the bye last year.

Players sing the team song after the Opening Round match between Brisbane and Carlton at The Gabba, March 08, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

"So we trust the preparation we've done, we trust the high performance and medical staff with our training blocks that we've done.

"It's not like we've sat on our bums for a week, we've got to work, we're still working on our game. I'm sure we'll be fine."

McGovern, 29, was confident a long-planned "structured" approach to pre-season had Carlton poised to handle its disrupted start.

"We went pretty hard during the pre-season, different than what we normally would," he said.

Mitch McGovern is chased by Daniel Rioli during the round one match between Carlton and Richmond at the MCG, March 14, 2024. Picture: AFL Photos

"To have those two games and lucky enough to get those two wins makes it a bit easier, but for us it was a bit of a reset."

The Blues are yet to confirm whether Jacob Weitering (calf) or Sam Walsh (back) will be available for Friday's match after missing the opening two rounds.

"There's potential for that," McGovern said.

"The boys have been having a really good training block. I'm uncertain with what it is.


"It's up to the coaching staff with how they get through this week, so fingers crossed. Either way we've got the 'next man up' mindset."

McGovern has been crucial to marshalling Carlton's defence in Weitering's absence, averaging 21.5 disposals and eight marks so far, while he hailed how Lachie Young and Brodie Kemp had stepped up in key posts.

"As much as 'Weiters' is missed, we've held together as a unit," he said.

"And it's not only just the back seven, it's the whole 18-man squad. So, we're doing really well."

Carlton has also relished dashing half-back Zac Williams' return from an anterior cruciate ligament tear.

"Him coming back in, having his versatility defensively and offensively has really helped us," McGovern said.

"And he's still building into the game himself. He's growing in confidence every week."

McGovern was speaking at the Royal Children's Hospital ahead of the Good Friday Appeal.

The defender has organised for his teammates to donate their own items, like boots and guernseys, to auction to raise funds for the appeal.