Collingwood forward Will Hoskin-Elliott faces a race to be fit for round one after going under the knife on Monday.
The 25-year-old will have surgery on one of his leg after experiencing soreness in the iliotibial band in his thigh.
Collingwood general manager of football Geoff Walsh says there is no specific return date in mind for the goalsneak.
“He’ll be off legs for about seven to 10 days then we’ll just see how he goes from there,” Walsh told AFL.com.au.
“I wouldn’t be putting any timeframe on it, because it’s something we’ll treat systematically as he returns to being able to run and that sort of stuff.”
The former Giant, who hasn’t missed a game since becoming a Magpie after the 2016 season, is in doubt for Collingwood’s JLT games on March 4 and March 11 as well as round one.
Hoskin-Elliott’s surgery adds to Collingwood’s expanding list of injury concerns this preseason, following setbacks to Jordan De Goey, Brodie Grundy and Jeremy Howe. Prized recruit Dayne Beams and running defender Jack Crisp have also missed time over the summer.
The bad news for Hoskin-Elliott comes just days after he extended his contract with the Pies.