GEELONG could continue to pull surprise moves from the coaching box this week with explosive forward Nakia Cockatoo in the running for a preliminary final call-up.
But, the Cats will be cautious with midfielder Cam Guthrie, who remains a "day-by-day" proposition after injuring his calf against Richmond last week.
Cockatoo, 20, hasn't played since suffering his third hamstring injury this year in round 19 against Carlton.
It was suggested he had encountered yet another setback since, with the club's director of coaching Simon Lloyd dodging a question about the potential hiccup in a radio interview on Friday night.
However, Lloyd did say Cockatoo had progressed enough to put himself in contention for this week's clash with Adelaide that has a Grand Final berth awaiting the winner.
"At different times they're adjusting the program and I watched him train last Saturday and he ran eight kilometres and he was doing ground balls and he was tackling," Lloyd told K-Rock on Friday.
"He trained this week and at one stage he chased someone down and then put on a second and third effort.
"You look at him and think he's getting very, very close.
"It's one of those things with a young player, we don't want him to do it again. It's a fine line, but he'll come very close next week."
Guthrie, however, appears less likely as he faces a race against time to overcome the low-grade calf strain he picked up in the loss to the Tigers.
"It's a day-by-day proposition with Cam," Lloyd said.
"Probably the thing we've spoken about is he can start to look at next week and he's just got to focus.
"He's running now and he's just got to focus on his next training session and see how he goes over the next couple of days."
Defender Tom Lonergan will return after missing Friday night's 59-point semi-final win over Sydney with food poisoning, while Tom Stewart will have scans on Saturday to determine if he's damaged a hamstring.
Stewart, who recovered from his quiet night against the Tigers to showcase his doggedness in a gut-busting second-quarter repeat effort from half-back, came off in the third term and didn't return.
The Cats believe it's not serious, with coach Chris Scott confident after the game it was more "tightness" than anything serious.
Meanwhile, Lloyd confirmed he was in the running for the Cats' football manager job, which will be vacated by Steve Hocking at the season's end.
"The first point of my mind is on the job," he said.
"Both myself and the club have spoken about it and they'll be discussions that will be had post finals.
"It's one of those things where everything this week has gone into preparation of the players and coaches, so we won't be distracted."
Hocking is headed to AFL House as the League's new football operations manager and will start in mid-October.