Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon returns to practice today after spending the past six games on the sideline with a foot injury. Weatherspoon is not eligible to return to games until next week’s matchup at Tampa Bay as part of the rules for placing a player on injured reserve with the designation to return, but he’s getting crucial on-field work in this week to get ready for his return to game play.
Weatherspoon said Wednesday that his foot injury has progressed so rapidly that he could have played in last Sunday’s game at Carolina if he had been eligible to return.
“It’s always good to seem like you matter a little bit,” Weatherspoon said of his rehab and return. “You’re in the training room every day, it makes work a little bit tough.”
Weatherspoon has been relegated to a coaching/cheerleading role for his teammates during the past seven weeks since his injury in a Week 2 matchup against St. Louis. He’s taken an active role on the sidelines despite not being able to practice or play until this point.
Perhaps too much of a role. Defensive coordinator Mike Nolan had to ask Weatherspoon to stop making play calls during film study to help the younger players learn what they’re supposed to be doing in Weatherspoon’s absence.
“For a while, I just had to leave my notepad in the locker room,” Weatherspoon said. “I wasn’t taking notes or anything. I was barking out calls, but I’m not going to be out there so it does us no good if I’m doing it. I think Nolan made a great point.”
Weatherspoon said he’d be ready to go when he’s eligible for return next week depending on the workload and how things feel but he sounded very optimistic about his chances.