Brisbane recruit Tom Doedee is said to be ahead of schedule in his rehabilitation from an ACL injury sustained last June, with a grand final rematch against Collingwood potentially lining up as the return game for the former Adelaide defender.

Doedee, who made the move to Queensland over the recent off-season via free agency, saw his 2023 campaign come to a cruel end in Round 12 when he suffered the second ACL injury of his career.

The expected 12-month recovery was set to place Doedee out of action for the majority of the first half of the coming season, with the 26-year-old likely facing a delayed club debut with Brisbane.

However, according to, Doedee could return in the opening month of the home and away season, with a clash with Collingwood at the Gabba in late March a potential comeback slot for the intercept defender.

A Round 3 return would mean Doedee only misses his side's Opening Round bout with Carlton and their Round 1 trip to Perth to face Fremantle, with the Lions scheduled for a bye in the third week of the new campaign.

It would see the 82-gamer make his Brisbane debut at his new home venue and against the reigning premiers, who claimed last year's flag with a four-point margin over Chris Fagan's men last September.

That fixture is set to fall on Easter Thursday and is succeeded by an eight-day break heading into Gather Round. Should Doedee's recovery process require more time, following clashes with North Melbourne (Round 4, Norwood Oval), Melbourne (Round 5, MCG) and Geelong (Round 6, Gabba) could all be circled as return games for Doedee.

Brisbane Lions recruit Tom Doedee (image via Brisbane FC)

Doedee is set to slot into a medium defensive role alongside co-captain Harrison Andrews and 2023 breakout backman Jack Payne, with the latter looking to cement his place back in Fagan's side after missing the grand final defeat.

An ankle injury kept Payne out of the Lions' preliminary final win over Carlton and would see the Lions decide against bringing him back into their side for the season decider after Darcy Gardiner's impressive performance against the Blues.

On top of Payne's return and the Doedee addition, the Lions have young midfielder Will Ashcroft's return to look forward to later this year.

The father-son gun's own ACL injury is likely to rule him out for the first half of the season, with the injury sustained last July and the likelihood of Brisbane taking a more cautious approach with the teenager.

The Lions are scheduled to face Gold Coast and Sydney away from home later this month as part of their practice match fixture, with a break coming prior to their Opening Round clash with Carlton at the Gabba on Friday, March 8.