AFL Rd 6 - Carlton v Brisbane
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 24: Senior coach David Teague of the Blues looks on during the 2021 AFL Round 06 match between the Carlton Blues and the Brisbane Lions at Marvel Stadium on April 24, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

David Teague has ruled out dropping veterans like Marc Murphy and Eddie Betts in order to make a statement to the playing group.

The Blues are 2-4 ahead of a must-win clash against arch-rivals Essendon this weekend.

Carlton have lost to three teams from last year's top four, but with expectations rising on the Blues, there's a feeling of same old at Ikon Park.

Teague said that the club still fully believe in their brand of football despite their slow start.

"We expect to go out there and play a brand of football that can win any game, are we at that level yet? We have't been the first six week. In four of those games we haven't been good enough," the Blues coach said.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 20: Marc Murphy of the Blues addresses his teammates during the 2018 AFL round nine match between the Carlton Blues and the Melbourne Demons at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on May 20, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Carlton have been known to concede goals in bunches under Teague and did so again last week against Brisbane.

Teague said that teams were becoming aware Carlton would give them an opportunity and that the Blues needed to fix that immediately.

"Teams now know that, a couple of opposition players even said 'Carlton are a good team but you're going to get a window,' It's something we've addressed in the past and we've reviewed that again," he said.

There have been calls for Carlton to axe Betts and Murphy, with the latter playing a new role across half-forward and wing.

However, Teague said he won't be using the duo as scapegoats for the rest of the playing group to take notice of.

"I'm not a big believer in the whole 'make a statement,' I think our fans want us to pick team that they think is going to win this weekend and take us forward.

"Right now we are on a pathway and we are really comfortable with where we are at. We are going to keep making decisions that are in the best interest of the football club over the journey and if that's dropping an experienced player to give us the best chance to take this group to where we want to take it we'll do that.

"We've given a lot of games to young guys in the past and sometimes you lose that winning culture. Ideally we have young guys coming through all the time forcing their way in the side."

AFL Rd 3 - Geelong v Carlton
GEELONG, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 20: Eddie Betts of the Blues (L) in action during the round 3 AFL match between the Geelong Cats and the Carlton Blues at GMHBA Stadium on June 20, 2020 in Geelong, Australia. (Photo by Graham Denholm/AFL Photos via Getty Images )

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Teague said that Betts still added a lot to the Carlton side and he isn't concerned by the small forward's 0.4 effort last week.

"We're getting beat for ground balls at the moment and he led our ground balls particularly in the front half, his pressure has been pretty solid.

"He's set the bar so high, Eddie kicking points is something I don't think will continue. I'll back Eddie in."

Meanwhile, injury-recovered duo Tom De Koning and Nic Newman will both  make their first appearances of 2021 via the VFL this weekend.

"They'll come back through the VFL, they've had large chunks off and we won't play them until they're ready to perform," Teague said.

"We've waited until guys are in really good form to bring them back in... We want them to come in playing well."

Teague also said Jack Silvagni was a chance to return depending on how he trains, while Luke Parks is also a chance.

"He (Silvagni) trained Tuesday, having said that it was a lighter skills day so he will have to get through training today and they'll (medical staff) will test him I think."

Other potential inclusions for the Bombers clash is axed midfield pair Paddy Dow and Will Setterfield, who were both very good in a huge VFL win last weekend.

Dow has been topic of conversation with many questioning whether the former Pick 3 has the tools to make it at AFL level.

Teague said he was impressed by the duo and that they could be in-line for a return

"They both showed really positive signs, we don't react to events or one game, we want to react to a body of work," he said.

"Both those guys have done good work before they went out of the team and what we wants is players coming in feeling really confident."

Carlton take on Essendon at the MCG on Sunday afternoon in Jacob Weitering's 100th game for the Blues.