THE “unknown”.

It’s been the term used to describe this situation more than any other.

For Kade Simpson, he has known life as an AFL footballer for 17 years.

All of a sudden, he had the realisation: could he have played his last game of football?

Long before return to train and play dates were set, Simpson - speaking to Sportsday WA - said the hypothetical had entered his head.

11:41 Mins
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Simpson: Light at the end of the tunnel

Kade Simpson spoke to Sportsday WA about the first week back.

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“A few weeks into the isolation period, I was sort of um-ing and ah=ing and thinking that I could’ve already played my last game,” Simpson said.

“It was looking pretty doom and gloom there for a while and looked as though the season wouldn’t get up and running.

“I’m pretty excited that it is and I’m going to be able to play footy again.”

Of course, there is still plenty to play out: Simpson isn’t putting a date on the last time he pulls on the Navy Blue jumper.

Unsurprisingly, he’s counting down the days to Thursday 11 June, which is when the competition returns — in whatever format it takes.

“I haven’t thought too much about whether this is going to be my last year or not wanting to go out with no fans,” he said.

Debate still remains about how the change on fixture and format will influence the competition’s older heads, with 16-minute quarters and longer breaks among the changes.

Simpson said the circumstances remained a “wait and see”, reserving judgment until games are actually played.

“It’s really unknown how the eight weeks off is going to affect guys of my age,” he said.

“It’s a bit of a wait-and-see thing — hopefully it benefits and helps us.”