Denver Broncos veteran cornerback Champ Bailey has yet to play this season after injuring his foot in the team’s second preseason game, but is hopeful to play Monday night against the Oakland Raiders.
Bailey is not 100 percent. “But I’m definitely close. Very close,” he said after Friday’s practice according to Gray Caldwell of DenverBroncos.com. Bailey has been held to limited participation in Thursday’s and Friday’s practices, which have been his first two practices of the season.
It is always nice to have Bailey play, of course, but Denver hasn’t necessarily needed him so far this season. Tony Carter has done a nice job at replacing Bailey in the first two games of the season, and the secondary as a whole has performed well together. Corners Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Carter, along with safety Rahim Moore, all have interceptions, and corner Chris Harris has two.
Denver’s defense will need to stay on its toes on Monday night, as quarterback Terrelle Pryor has been quite the surprise so far this season. If Bailey isn’t completely ready to play Monday, the team should have no fear. Pryor has been more of a threat with his legs, and the Broncos’ run defense is best in the league through the first two games, holding its opponents to 40.5 yards per game.
I think the Broncos will make the right decision with Bailey for Monday night’s game. They don’t necessarily need him to play, but getting him back in game shape can’t hurt. We’ll just have to wait and see on Monday night whether Bailey plays or not, and hopefully he doesn’t re-injure his foot if he does play when he doesn’t even need to.