THE WESTERN Bulldogs will hand 23-year-old key position player Jack Redpath a debut against Geelong, while forward Liam Jones could be dropped.

A first AFL game has been a long time coming for 194cm Redpath, who was taken with pick No.62 in the 2011 rookie draft.

"It's fantastic for Jack, he was tracking really well as a young player, and has overcome a couple of knee reconstructions," coach Brendan McCartney said on Thursday.  

"We've had him here for two or three years, and he's been able to really develop in our VFL team under some great coaching.

"We're hoping he'll bring some intensity and some contested marking.

"We were out-marked way too much in our forward half last week and we're hopeful Jack will help that area for us."

McCartney indicated Jones' spot in the team was in peril.

"It wasn't a great day for him last week, but thankfully some other people picked up the slack and helped us score," he said.  

Captain Ryan Griffen has overcome back spasms and is set to return for Sunday's game at Simonds Stadium after appearing to train well on Thursday.

Defender Jordan Roughead is also set to come back into the side from a shoulder injury.

"Roughy's a nice surprise - we thought we'd lost him," McCartney said.