LUKE Hodge could be set to play on in 2018, with the Brisbane Lions in discussions to lure the four-time premiership star out of retirement.
Hodge hung up the boots last month after 305 games for Hawthorn, but the Lions are on the verge of convincing him to play another season before taking up a coaching role.
"We are keen to explore the possibility of Luke playing for our club with his manager in the coming days," Lions general manager of football David Noble said.
"Luke’s ability to assist with developing and nurturing our emerging group as an additional on-field leader would be a great help to us."
Lions coach Chris Fagan worked closely with Hodge in his nine-year tenure at Hawthorn and the pair are still close.
Hodge told Channel Seven "both parties are interested".
"He (Fagan) knew I was still passionate about playing footy, but I guess the main thing is we've got to make a few decisions on what's best for the family as well," Hodge said.
"There's still water to go under the bridge.
"It's a decision I'm not going to rush into."
Hodge said the Lions' young list appealed to him.
He would anchor a backline that includes Harris Andrews (20), Dan McStay (22), Darcy Gardiner (21), Sam Mayes (23) and Alex Witherden (18).
"That's the appealing thing, some of the knowledge I've picked up over the years that hopefully I could pass on to these younger guys," Hodge said.
Hodge met with Alastair Clarkson to discuss the idea on Tuesday night, and the Hawthorn coach gave his blessing.
"It's a coup for the Brisbane Lions, but it's also a little bit of a coup for Luke Hodge," Clarkson told Channel Seven.
"He goes on a little bit of an adventure with his family … at a good time for him.
"It scratches an itch for him with the coaching that I don't think he thought was an option.
"I thought even last week media was where he was going to go, and it could possibly still be the case, but I think he's liking the idea of going to Brisbane for two or three years and seeing where it takes him.
"This is a pretty unique opportunity that's been created."