Carlton have played down any concerns surrounding small forward Jesse Motlop's toe injury, with the Blues having taken a "conservative" approach during their final match of the pre-season.

Motlop did not return to the field after the opening term of his side's 38-point defeat to Melbourne on Wednesday, playing just 12 per cent of the game due to a jarred toe.

Already bracing to be without fellow forwards Corey Durdin and Matt Owies for next week's trip to face Brisbane in their season opener, Carlton decided to take no risk with Motlop's ailment.

"We were conservative. Jarred his toe in a tackle," assistant Ash Hansen said after the game. "Being his last game (of the pre-season) we didn't want to take any risks.

"We've had a really positive pre-season and Jesse's had his best pre-season of the three he's had, which you'd hope for with a younger player.

"It was more about managing all of those guys. If there was any risk, we had guys on the bench we were willing to activate to give them some exposure. So we took those chances."

The Blues are likely to pair new recruit Orazio Fantasia with Motlop in their attacking third against the Lions, with the former getting through unscathed after a pre-season of load-building.

Returning defender Zac Williams saw out three quarters of action in the VFL earlier in the day to take another step in his comeback from an ACL injury, while ruckman Marc Pittonet will be monitored in the coming days after adding a half of gameplay to his pre-season in the same game.

The Blues will assess whether they'll rekindle the partnership of ruck pair Tom De Koning and Pittonet next week or utilise key forward Harry McKay as the supporting ruck option for De Koning.

McKay offered Michael Voss' side some flexibility in Wednesday's loss, rolling through the middle as a pinch-hit option before moving back to his nature position across multiple quarters.

"It certainly gives us a bit of flexibility, with 'H' being able to support that second ruck position but also be really influential forward," Hansen said on McKay's role.

"If we need him to go up (into the midfield) for 5-7 minutes a quarter, it creates speed in other positions or complements and supports the ruck.

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"Harry's starting to develop that side to his game, which is really important for us to have, for versatility and selection."

Carlton could also regain star midfielder Sam Walsh (back) for Opening Round, while defender Caleb Marchbank (illness) and forward Jack Martin are likely to join Owies, Durdin and Jacob Weitering in missing the Blues' first game of the season.

Brisbane will host the Blues at the Gabba next Friday night in what will be a rematch of last year's preliminary final, with Carlton returning to Melbourne the following Thursday to face Richmond at the MCG.