Magpies coach Nathan Buckley said O'Brien would only play when those supporting the player were satisfied he was mentally fit to take the field.
"Along with the expert advice of the people he is workingwith and our doctors, we'll find the right time for him. It's not reallya time-frame issue," Buckley said on Wednesday.
O'Brien battling personal 'demons'
"It's just about when our players are rightto play. It's easy if you have got a calf or you have got a hamstringbut there are other issues you need to get right to be able to play fourquarters of intense football."
Buckley said players all through the League dealt with issues all the time but rarely were they played out so publicly as that of O'Brien's.
"They're not robots. They're more than footballers and we treat them as such and that is important to consider in this circumstance," Buckley said.
Buckley said that Alan Didak and Quinten Lynch were more than likely to return to football via the VFL.
The suspicion has been that Didak's defensive pressure was not acceptable in his only senior game for the season (against Melbourne in round 11) but Buckley said the veteran's first priority was to get his body up and running.
"We'll give him that opportunity and see where we go from there," Buckley said.
He lauded the performance of Dayne Beams in his first senior game for the season after overcoming a quadriceps injury he suffered before round one.
Buckley said Beams had recovered well and shown his importance late in the contest against Adelaide.
"When the game was on the line, he stood up again," Buckley said.
"A couple of assists and important clearances and contested ball and has run the games out pretty strongly off the back of some pretty solid training form before he was released to play."
Buckley also revealed the club had contacted the AFL umpiring department to get some tips on what Travis Cloke needed to do to stop giving away free kicks in marking contests.
Cloke kicked 2.5 against Adelaide last Friday night but he gave away four free kicks in marking contests.
Buckley said the club's forward coach Matthew Lappin had contacted the AFL to understand what Cloke needed to do in such contests so he did not infringe.
"He wins his contest by too much," Buckley said. "A little bit of that is Clokey's want, once he has a player out of position, to continue to have them out of position before coming back to the ball."
Buckley said coaches were working continually with Cloke to ensure he found the right balance when grappling with opponents.
Buckley also dealt with reports about Melbourne chasingCollingwood's director of coaching Rodney Eade for its vacant coachingposition.
He said Eade's energies would be devoted to his job at the Magpies for the rest of the season.
"It'sbeen evident in the way he carries himself," Buckley said. "This yearwill look after itself and next year will look after itself also."