Bush said Friday that the plan was for him to return against Pittsburgh whenthe week began, but after testing the recovery of his lower right leg from afractured bone, he and trainers agreed he was not quite ready.
“It’s tough because this is such an important game for us,” Bush said. “Iwas still having some pain and I didn’t feel like I could be 100 percent in whatI need to do on the football field.”
Bush said he might play at Carolina on Nov. 7, but he also acknowledged thewisdom of sitting out that game as well and then getting additional time to healduring the Saints’ Week 10 bye before returning in Week 11 against Seattle.
“We’re just kind of taking it week by week,” Bush said. “Obviously, if Ididn’t play next week, that would give me a little more time with the bye weekto come back after that. So I don’t know. There’s a lot of things up in theair.”
Bush said he started running on hard ground late last week and has beendoing individual drills on the practice field in sessions lasting 30 to 45minutes.
“We’re not trying to overdo it, but still trying to push it to see whereI’m at,” Bush said.
Bush has not played since breaking his fibula while recovering his muffedpunt at San Francisco in Week 2.
Thomas has been out since spraining his left ankle in Week 3 and did notpractice this week. He was on crutches after Thursday’s practice, sayingtrainers had advised him to keep weight off of his ankle after workouts andadding with apparent frustration that he had no timetable for his return.
Payton says linebacker Scott Shanle(notes) (left hamstring) and cornerback TracyPorter(notes) (left knee) would be game-time decisions. Porter has been out sincehaving surgery to repair his lateral meniscus in Week 5. Shanle has missed thepast two games.
Cornerback Jabari Greer(notes) (left shoulder) was doubtful. Greer said thatalthough he’s able to work at close to full speed during non-contact practices,trainers are concerned about how his shoulder would respond to heavy collisionin a game.
“I’m progressing well,” said Greer, who was hurt two weeks ago at TampaBay. “I want to consider by self a guy that can battle through these things,but you never know until you take that first hit.”