With the mid-season byes now in the rearview mirror, the league takes a look at the last third of the AFL season.

Geelong legend Tom Hawkins was sent for scans after he fell to the ground on Friday night following a lead-up to the ball, while the Tigers will be without their star forward Tom Lynch due to a fresh hamstring concern.

Fremantle captain Alex Pearce was subbed out of Sunday's battle with Gold Coast after overextending his left forearm and Collingwood could regain a suite of key players for this week's trip north.

Here's all the latest injury news across the AFL...

Geelong confirm Hawkins' injury extent

Geelong veteran Tom Hawkins is facing up to two months on the sidelines following a foot injury sustained against Carlton last Friday.

The triple premiership Cats sustained an atypical mid foot joint and ligament injury and will require 6-8 weeks in recovery after meeting with specialists.

“Tom has already been in the Club today and commenced his off-foot training, he'll remain in a boot for the next couple of weeks before progressing based on clinical signs," Cats football boss Andrew Mackie said in a club update.

“Tom is in a positive and optimistic mindset and we are confident he will give himself the best chance to have an impact later in the season.”

With nine weeks left in the season, Hawkins could make his return prior to September.

Veteran Cam Guthrie remains up to two weeks away from a return as he edges closer to finishing rehabilitation on an Achilles issue, while onballer Tanner Bruhn is 3-5 weeks away after suffering a scaphoid fracture.

Richmond gun set to return, latest on veterans

Richmond onballer Jacob Hopper is in line to return this weekend against Carlton following a lengthy period on the sidelines with a hamstring injury.

The club confirmed on Tuesday that Hopper will only need to get through Thursday's session to be cleared to face the Blues.

"'Hops' has put in a huge eight weeks. Especially the last month, he has been working really, really hard. He'll get through training on Thursday and be available this Sunday," Tigers Physical Performance Manager Luke Meehan said in a club update.

Veteran midfielder Dion Prestia (calf) and Marlion Pickett (calf) could be back next week as they push for returns, while ruckman Samson Ryan is facing a similar period on the sidelines following an ankle issue.

"[Dion's] going really well. He's putting in some big running sessions at the moment. We're hoping next week, if not the week after, he'll be available," Meehan said.

Dion Prestia during the 2022 AFL Round 19 match between Richmond and Fremantle (Photo by Cameron Grimes / Zero Digital Media)

"Marlion's injury has been a little bit stubborn to get going. At the moment, he's just started running. There's no further update at the moment, but we're hoping to have one in the next week or two on where he's at.

"Samson (sustained) a minor syndesmosis at the end of the Adelaide game (Round 13). He played out the game, so we were hoping he would be available the next week. It didn't quite turn out that way and it's probably a little bit worse than we first thought... We think maybe a week or two."

The Tigers confirmed earlier this week that forward Tom Lynch will miss close to two matches with a new hamstring injury.

Lions confirm young gun's availability, star required scans

Brisbane have revealed star midfielder Josh Dunkley underwent scans on a glute concern on Monday, with any issue not expected to keep the ex-Bulldog from playing on Friday against Melbourne.

Dunkley was able to train through Tuesday's session to be cleared to play in Round 16.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 30: Josh Dunkley of the Lions warms up prior to the 2023 AFL Grand Final match between Collingwood Magpies and Brisbane Lions at Melbourne Cricket Ground, on September 30, 2023, in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/AFL Photos/via Getty Images)

Meanwhile, young gun Will Ashcroft is available to play his first game of 2024 this weekend following an extensive rehabilitation process from an ACL injury sustained last year.

A decision as to whether Ashcroft plays at AFL or VFL level is yet to be made, with the second-year Lion having a full month of training under his belt.

Young defender Carter Michael is also available following quad and knee concerns that have hampered the fringe Lion.

Blues livewire two weeks away, midfielder a test

Carlton could have forward Jack Martin back in the next fortnight as he works his way through returning from a calf injury.

Soft-tissue injuries have hampered Martin throughout the year, with a return potentially coming in the next few weeks.

Midfielder Adam Cerra will need to prove his fitness at training this week to be cleared to face Richmond on Sunday.

Draftee Billy Wilson will be sidelined for a week after suffering knee soreness from the VFL, while rookie Matt Carroll is sidelined indefinitely as he continues to rehab from a groin issue.

Port ruckman out for a month, wingman sidelined

A hamstring injury has sidelined Port Adelaide midfielder Jase Burgoyne for up to two weeks in what is the latest setback at Alberton.

Burgoyne underwent scans this week which confirmed a strain, with the father-son Power ball-winner set to miss this week's meeting with St Kilda.

The Power will also be without ruckman Ivan Soldo for a month as he continues to deal with knee soreness.

Defender Ryan Burton will ramp up his workloads at training this week and will eye a return from a foot issue, while forward Willie Rioli is in the mix after being a late out for Round 15 due to a calf injury.

Crows in line to regain forward power

Adelaide veteran Taylor Walker and young tall Riley Thilthorpe are both a chance play this weekend against GWS following separate ailments.

Walker has not played since Round 13 due to a back issue, with the former Crows captain given extra time on the sidelines prior to the club's Round 15 bye.

Thilthorpe is in line for his first game of 2024, having dealt with a knee injury since the pre-season.

“Tex has got through everything we've asked him to do, he had a few minor issues last week, but late last week and in Monday's session he did really well with a lot of contact, groundballs and everything we'd want him to do in a game,” High Performance Manager Darren Burgess said in a club report.

“Certainly the longer break helped Tex, I'm not sure he would have played last weekend, but the way he was moving on Monday he did everything we asked.

“Riley has done really well and got through all the objective markers we've asked over the last three or four weeks,” Burgess said.

“He's been fully training with the team and I'm sure he'll play at some level this weekend, assuming he gets through training tomorrow.

“Just a final team training session to get through but I'm sure he will get through and be fine.”

Elliott Himmelberg (cheekbone) and Brodie Smith (knee) are both available for selection this week.

Dockers captain hit for four

Alex Pearce was subbed out of Sunday's win after overextending his forearm after a contest with opposition forward Sam Day.

Pearce was seen to be in physical pain and came straight from the ground when doctors tended to him.

Since getting scans, the club has confirmed that the Dockers skipper will be sidelined for at least three weeks, revealing a fracture in his left forearm.

GWS pair a test, latest on sidelined defender

GWS could welcome the returns of Stephen Coniglio and Harry Perryman from shoulder and hamstring setbacks for this week's meeting with Adelaide.

Coniglio hasn't featured in Adam Kingsley's side since Round 11 due to the ailment, with the club taking a cautious approach last week despite the midfielder getting through training.

The former Giants captain is to be joined by Perryman in needing to prove their fitness at Thursday's main session, with both players expected to play.

The Giants have confirmed star backman Sam Taylor will learn the full extent of his recent groin injury when he visits a specialist on Wednesday this week.

Taylor is currently sidelined indefinitely after undergoing successful surgery last week.

West Coast to welcome back star midfield duo

The Eagles can look forward to the return of Harley Reid (suspension) and Tim Kelly (hip/knee) this weekend.

Reid has missed since his dangerous tackle was upheld at the Tribunal following the club's clash with St Kilda.

The 19-year-old will be a welcome return alongside Kelly, who's missed since the Adelaide game the week before.

Magpies set for boost, star still a test as recruit goes under the knife

Collingwood are in line to regain senior pair Scott Pendlenbury (bicep) and Brody Mihocek (hamstring) for this week's trip to the Gold Coast, while midfielder Jordan De Goey will need to get through main training this week to play.

De Goey has been dealing with an abdominal issue over the past month and will be required to prove his fitness at training on Thursday to secure his return to the senior side.

The Magpies are also needing to have forward Joe Richards pass fitness tests this week, with the mature-aged recruit looking to return from a foot injury that has kept him out of the side since Round 11.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 18: Jordan De Goey of the Magpies celebrates a goal with teammate Scott Pendlebury during the 2024 AFL Round 10 match between The Collingwood Magpies and Kuwarna (Adelaide Crows) at The Melbourne Cricket Ground on May 18, 2024 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Dylan Burns/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Mid-Season Draft recruit Ned Long is expected be available for selection this week after overcoming a calf issue, while defender Oleg Markov is also in line to play.

In unfortunate news for Collingwood, recruit and recent debutant Wil Parker will require surgery on his knee and faces over a month on the sidelines.

Bulldogs to be buoyed by return of big man

Rory Lobb could face an unlucky truth as the club is hopeful that Aaron Naughton is available for selection, while youngster Sam Darcy returns from suspension.

Naughton injured his knee in Round 11 but somehow managed to avoid an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear and has miraculously recovered to be within a shot to return on Saturday, according to AFL Media's Josh Gabelich.

The high-flyer will need to prove his fitness at the main training session on Wednesday.

Recruit Nick Coffield is also not far away from returning to play as he comes back from a dislocated shoulder in Round 2 and subsequent surgery.

Coffield - who crossed from the Saints - has battled with a multitude of injuries since being drafted in 2017 and looks to make another run at his new club.

Midfielder James Harmes is also in the frame to return to football this weekend after hurting his hamstring in Round 12.

Richmond's Lynch faces another stint on the sidelines

Richmond is expecting to be without key forward Tom Lynch for at least two weeks following a hamstring strain against Hawthorn in Round 14.

Lynch returned for the match (Dustin Martin's 300th) after overcoming a hamstring issue in the opposite leg and has now been dealt a fresh issue following the bye.

The former Sun was sent for scans after experiencing some soreness after the Hawks game and was confirmed with a "minor" strain, according to Fox Footy's David Zita.

Lynch only managed four games in 2023 and has hit the same number this year.

Melbourne defenders in race against clock

Demon defender Christian Salem will give himself every chance to play in Round 16 despite being put on ice after a knock to the knee.

During the last quarter of Saturday's nail-biting game with North Melbourne, Salem was assessed with a knee concern and did not return to the game.

Coming immediately from the bench, the left-footer was quickly on the mend by applying ice to the injury. The Demons have confirmed the precautionary move to have Salem replaced in the game, with the premiership half-back needing to prove his fitness at training on Tuesday.

“Christian had sustained a knock to his knee in training leading into the game,” Demons high-performance boss Selwyn Griffith said in a club update.

“We had cleared him from any significant damage from some imaging.

“Throughout the game, when the decision needed to be made on bringing Kynan in, knowing that [Christian] had that knock, we used that as an opportunity to give him a bit of a rest.

“He's recovered well from the game. The aim will be for him to train fully tomorrow to be available for this week's game.”

Christian Salem during Melbourne's open training session at Gosch's Paddock, Melbourne in 2022 (Photo by Cameron Grimes/Zero Digital Sports)

The Demons could regain veteran pair Jake Lever (knee) and Lachie Hunter (calf) this week, with the pair also needing to get through this week's session before being cleared to return.

“Jake will train fully with the squad tomorrow to be available for selection this week,” Griffith added.

“Lachie's had some really good progression from that calf injury. He had a great training week last week.  

“He'll integrate into training this week to be available for VFL selection.”

Veteran Ben Brown has faced a setback after experiencing minor knee pain, with the club listing the ex-Roo's timeframe as "TBC".

Have we seen the last of Tom Hawkins?

Geelong champion Tom Hawkins suffered an innocuous foot injury during Friday's loss to Carlton.

In an attempt to lead for the ball, Hawkins fell to the ground during the third term and was subsequently ruled out of the remainder of the match.

Cats coach Chris Scott said post-game: "I can't say the news is good news, but I'm not saying the news is bad either.

"He had to come off with a foot issue. It's mid-foot. He has had a (previous) issue with his toe but it is a fair way away from that, it's not the same injury. The experts we have don't know, so I certainly don't have anything more to add to that.

"They're not saying (his season is over) and I certainly don't want to say anything that alleviates the concern because we are concerned, but I don't want to jump to conclusions either."

Pink not feeling so good

North Melbourne swingman Toby Pink was subbed out of Saturday's match with an ankle/foot concern.

Pink came from the ground during the third term and was eventually removed from the remainder of the match.