Former wing-back Paul Curran. Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile
"But I think the pool of players that he has is strong enough to cope with even losing a fella like McCaffrey at this stage.
"And I think that will be the line that will come out from the county - that McCaffrey's career is by no means over, he'll be welcome back when or if he decides to come back, but for the moment we'll be OK."
Player availability apart, Curran can spy other challenges ahead for Dublin's new manager, and his long-time team-mate, in this strangest of seasons. Starting with the revised format precipitated by Covid-19.
True, they need only win five matches - three of those in the killing fields of Leinster. But Curran warns: "I honestly believe that the knockout competition presents more uncertainties than the old format last year.
"The so-called weaker teams have become used to that second chance. So, if they're drawn against one of the strong teams like Dublin, they're nearly resigned to the fact that game is gone, that's a write-off, and hoping for a decent (qualifier) draw then.
"Whereas pure knockout - I mean, it really focuses the mind."
In this new scenario, he reckons certain counties possessing a hard core of talent, who may have previously done well in the qualifiers and were happy to go that route, could be a danger to some of the main contenders.
He namechecks Armagh, Kildare under Jack O'Connor and also Meath, "who have three or four years under (Andy) McEntee and have shown glimpses, without actually taking out a big gun.
"I think it's made it harder for Dublin, there's no doubt about that," he continues. "All going well, they'll win Leinster again. They'll have a very difficult match a couple of weeks later against the Ulster champions, and that's going to be a challenge.
"Having said all that, I still think that it'll be a Dublin-Kerry final again, a repeat of last year, barring a shock or two.
"And if you look at Kerry's route - Kerry have three games really to win an All-Ireland again, and you're going back to '70s/80s where they beat Cork, they beat the Connacht champions, and they win the All-Ireland after that.
"I think for a team like Kerry, this is probably their best chance as well - provided they get over that first one (against Cork)."
Delving into how Farrell might reconfigure his defence, in the absence of McCaffrey, Curran is quick to identify at least nine experienced names in the shake-up.
In no particular order you have Mick Fitzsimons and David Byrne (heading the queue for a place in the full-back line), Jonny Cooper (who could play in either line), Eoin Murchan, John Small, Brian Howard, James McCarthy, Philly McMahon and Cian O'Sullivan.
He has heard speculation that Farrell might fancy restoring McCarthy to old wing-back haunts and wouldn't be surprised if this now materialises. Howard's versatility makes him an option not just for half-forward or midfield but also half-back.
But might this leave Dublin shy of options to partner Brian Fenton in the engine-room?
Curran counters that the new format could facilitate a big role, yet, for Michael Darragh Macauley, notwithstanding concerns about his age (34 in August) or recent injury issues (early-season groin surgery).