MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 12: Scott Pendlebury of the Magpies and Brodie Grundy of the Demons compete for the ball during the 2023 AFL Round 13 match between the Melbourne Demons and the Collingwood Magpies at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on June 12, 2023 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Collingwood veteran Scott Pendlebury has discussed ex-teammate Brodie Grundy's contentious situation at the Demons, addressing speculation his former ruckman could seek a trade to a third AFL club in as many seasons.

Pendlebury, who co-hosted the return episode of his podcast Jock and Journo with Herald Sun journalist Jay Clark, combed through a range of pertinent football topics, none more captivating than the circumstances surrounding his ex-teammate.

Grundy, who now dons Demons' colours, recently fell out of favour with Melbourne's match committee, having been demoted to play with the club's VFL affiliate, Casey.

Discourse continues to centre on Grundy being urged by the Demons to develop his forward craft, since playing more time forward of the ball in addition to his natural rucking duties alongside Melbourne captain and number-one ruckman Max Gawn.

However, following the sidelining injury to Dees' key forward Harrison Petty over the weekend, Grundy appears a genuine possibility to return to Melbourne's senior side ahead of an enticing Round 22 matchup with in-form Carlton this Saturday night.

Pendlebury claimed AFL player contracts "don't mean much anymore" as a result of increased traded player movement around the league across recent seasons.

"I feel like I said this years ago, that contracts in footy don't mean much anymore," the Magpies stalwart started.

"And this goes for anyone in the competition; I think if you're not playing AFL footy [you're not going to be satisfied], and that's your dream, you've got to remember, you come into this system because you want to play AFL football.

"Nobody wants to play VFL, and Brodie's too good of a ruckman to be playing -- in my opinion -- VFL footy. I know that's up to Melbourne with their mix and how they want to work, and they've obviously got the best ruckman in the competition, so it's hard, but Brodie's a top-five ruckman in the league.

"So, it's up to him if he wants to go get that opportunity, and I don't think anyone would begrudge him for wanting to go to another footy club and try to get his ruck role back and show what he can do, because I feel like a lot of people have written Brodie off [saying] he's not the player he was and all this sort of stuff.

"And there's the argument too that if Melbourne didn't have him earlier in the year when Gawn went down, how does it (their season) look now? So, I think it probably sits with Melbourne and Brodie and I think that would be a pretty mature conversation [to have] at the end of the year."

Regarding a third-party involvement in the Grundy sweepstakes, talk has revolved around which teams would foot what amount of Grundy's hefty remaining salary, with Port Adelaide reportedly emerging as a potential suitor for the South Australian if he and the Demons opt to part ways at the cessation of this season.

There are four years remaining on Grundy's current contract, with both Collingwood and Melbourne footing varying portions of that bill.

'Pendles' and the Pies are fixtured to meet Geelong this Friday night in what shapes as a blockbuster finals-shaping clash, while the Demons await the Blues on Saturday night.