GEELONG will use the Marsh Community Series to explore the possibility of Tom Hawkins, Esava Ratugolea and Josh Jenkins all playing in the same forward 50.

The trio combined in the front half as the Cats hosted Collingwood for match simulation at GMHBA Stadium on Thursday afternoon.

With Rhys Stanley and Darcy Fort rotating in the ruck off an extended bench, the forward trio played in a tall attacking unit alongside 189cm second-year swingman Ben Jarvis.

"We're probably still working out our best combinations and I think it'll change throughout the year," Geelong forward coach Corey Enright said before the session with the Pies.

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"(It will be) depending on how those guys are going, opposition teams and where we play.

"I'm pretty keen to see how it unfolds and once we get into games against oppositions."

A host of first-choice Cats, including Patrick Dangerfield, Gary Ablett, Mark O'Connor, Luke Dahlhaus, Sam Menegola and Brandan Parfitt didn't take part in the hitout due to load management.

Joel Selwood was an onlooker, however the Cats remain optimistic he'll play in the Marsh Series against Gold Coast (February 22) or Essendon (March 9) after recovering from hamstring surgery. 

Mitch Duncan (hip/shoulder) is less likely to play in pre-season and remains in doubt for round one, while Jack Steven is still building up his fitness after a calf setback in January.

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In a positive sign, dual All-Australian defender Tom Stewart was on the track against the Pies after battling groin troubles through December and January.

The Pies fielded a strong line-up for the trip down the highway, with captain Scott Pendlebury, Steele Sidebottom, Darcy Moore, Taylor Adams and Jeremy Howe among those to take part.

Both Rupert Wills and Brayden Sier played in a midfield that included third-year inside midfielder Tyler Brown as the Pies weigh up what to do with their onball unit in 2020.

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Jordan Roughead watched on, while Brodie Grundy was due to feature later in the session with media only allowed a glimpse for the first 20 minutes.

Jordan De Goey was put through his paces in a running session at the Holden Centre earlier on Thursday and didn't travel.

The Pies will take on Carlton in a proper scratch match next Thursday at Ikon Park before Marsh Series matches against Richmond (March 1) and St Kilda (March 8).