Simpson suffered head trauma in the pre-season of the club's 2022 campaign during a training drill, with the local product's last AFL appearance coming in the 2021 finals series.
Adding to a series of setbacks due to soft tissue injuries, the concussion concerns placed Simpson out of action for months before an eventual return to training where he was limited to running laps.
Simpson would make his comeback through the VFL late into the Cats' 2022 season before a quad injury hampered the end of his sixth season at Kardinia Park.
The frustrating year was compounded by a nervous wait on his future, with Simpson's contract expiring at the conclusion of the season and the club weighing up their options for 2023.
Simpson was required to wait until November before inking a one-year deal at the Cattery, with the club showing their faith in the 24-year-old.
603 days on from Geelong's qualifying-final defeat to Port Adelaide in 2021, Simpson made his AFL return on Saturday as a late inclusion for Jonathon Ceglar, who missed the game for the birth of his child.
Simpson stood tall in the 93-point win over Sydney, booting two goals, including the first of the game, and collecting 14 possessions in the comeback appearance.
Speaking after the victory Scott detailed the journey Simpson has taken to get back to full fitness, admitting there was a period where the midfielder's career was hanging in the balance.
"It's really special," Scott said of Simpson's return.
"I think if you're involved in footy for a long period of time, part of the challenge of being optimistic about your career and your future is having to endure the really difficult time.
"Some people only see the outcome (on) gameday. They don't see the dreary, repetitive work in rehab.
"Sam has obviously been through a long period when he was in that position, but for even bigger periods it looked like he wasn't going to get back at all.
"He had a history of soft tissue injuries, he's done a power of work to remedy, but it was the concussion issues that were really worrying.
"Take a bow Sam Simpson, welcome back to the big time!"
— 7AFL (@7AFL) April 22, 2023
"I'm proud of how our club has handled the situation too. He was given the space that he needed. We had a lot of faith in the sort of player he could become.
"The investment the whole club has put in him will pay off.
"A few of the players have said already he's a great teammate, they love playing with him, he's enthusiastic. If you give anyone who's been through that to mope... he's never done that.
"Even when he was really struggling his place on the list looked, if not in jeopardy, almost completely gone. He just kept bouncing in with some positivity. It's just really nice to see guys like that come through.
"He's got a long way to go, but it was a nice moment."
The Round 6 demolition of the Swans was Simpson's 20th game in the blue and white hoops, having first made his debut in the second half of the 2017 season.
Simpson also featured in Geelong's 2020 grand final side and would play just the four matches the following year.
Taken with the 53rd overall selection in the 2016 Rookie Draft, Simpson was a father-son selection for the Cats - following in the footsteps of his father, Sean, who played 114 games for the club in the 1990s.