Sydney's Lance Franklin to miss opening AFL game of 2021

Sydney AFL superstar Lance Franklin has been ruled out of round one, but highly-rated youngster Logan McDonald looms as a potential option after a promising cameo on Sunday.

McDonald booted a long-range goal in the pre-season loss to GWS and showed enough to suggest he is ready for a senior debut.

Coach John Longmire has run a line through Franklin - who is still recovering from calf tightness - for the round-one clash with the Brisbane Lions on March 20.

"Hopefully if he continues the way he's going it will be pretty early but it won't be round one," said Longmire.

"We've got to get him right for the whole season and that means he might not play every game for the whole season.

"That's OK. We'll just work through it."

McDonald, the 18-year-old, 196cm key forward drafted at No.4 by Sydney last year, injected some height and marking power into a relatively small Swans forward line.

"I thought Logan when he started the third in particular was very good," Longmire said.

"He came off at one stage and said 'gee it's quick' and that's just getting used to the tempo at this level and it goes up another gear in a couple of weeks.

"We've got to understand very young forwards do take a bit of time to get into their body and the feel of the game.

"He got pushed out a few times but he's smart, he works hard, he'll give it everything he's got."