The only way for the pair to travel to Queensland ahead of September would be to enter hard quarantine, which would mean they would need to be in their hotel rooms for two weeks, hampering their preparation.
They will leave on September 1 and be part of the AFL’s transition hub three, with St Kilda’s Dan Hannebery to be part of that travel party.
Geelong football manager Simon Lloyd said the club respected the decision.
“While Gary and the club are disappointed, we understand the importance of staying diligent in the fight against COVID-19,” Lloyd said.
“The Queensland government and health officials have been first-class throughout this time in supporting clubs and the game.
“Gary had important family matters that required him to return home. We were fully supportive of that decision.
“Gary will continue to train before coming into Queensland on 1 September. We look forward to Gary and his family joining us once the quarantine is complete.”
The Cats champion is in good spirits training with former teammate Andrew Mackie, while Edwards is tracking well with the Tigers.
Both will have one game remaining when they join teammates.