Tide will turn for out-of-favour Bulldog Lobb: coach

Coach Luke Beveridge insists Rory Lobb has a long future at the Western Bulldogs as the out-of-favour big man prepares to spend a third consecutive week in the VFL.

Former Giant and Docker Lobb was dropped for Sam Darcy after the Bulldogs' round-one defeat to Melbourne and the young gun has made the ruck-forward role his own.

The 31-year-old has responded with bags of four and five goals in the VFL but will seemingly have to bide his time as his senior teammates prepare to face Geelong at Adelaide Oval on Saturday.

"He's a chance every week, the way he's gone about it, going back (to the VFL)," Beveridge said.

"(I) just talked to him about the circumstances around that at the moment. In a sense, we all didn't go too well against Melbourne and we did make that change with Sam coming in, in that position.

"But he's just got to keep a glass-half-full outlook that circumstances will change again and and he'll get on the end of some good fortune if he keeps working hard."

Rory Lobb and Steven May.
Rory Lobb is beaten to the ball in round one by Melbourne's Steven May.

Lobb appeared in a TikTok video posted by his partner that made light of his omission to the VFL.

But Beveridge said that hadn't run any "alarm bells" as he eyes the big man staying on long-term, regardless of whether ruckman Tim English stays or departs as a free agent.

"As a guy in his early 30s, he didn't play a lot of footy as a teenager, and if anyone's gonna have a long career, it's Rory Lobb," Beveridge said.

"So I see him as having another half-a-dozen years in the game and I think he's got a really long period in his career ahead of him.

"And that's important to remind him of, too - he just needs to persevere through this part.

"He's absolutely (a) significantly required and needed player at our club and I hope that half-dozen years he's got left in him are with us."

Cody Weightman has been cleared of damage to the left elbow he previously dislocated in 2022 and will play, while Ed Richards will return from concussion.

Cody Weightman.
Cody Weightman grabs his injured elbow during the clash with West Coast.

Beveridge was confident Weightman wouldn't have to manage the elbow issue throughout his career, though he will tape it against the Cats.

Recruit James Harmes returned from suspension via the VFL but will have to force out veteran Jack Macrae to play at senior level.

"You can (play them together) but you can't with the depth through there at the middle," Beveridge said.

"It's not the situation at the moment where they'll both play in the same team. Down the track, maybe."

James O'Donnell could be recalled to help handle star Geelong trio Tom Hawkins, Jeremy Cameron and Ollie Henry.

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