There's a difference between preseason-ready and playoff-ready, and Chris Harris Jr. on Monday said his knee was the latter.
He'll pass on the preseason, given the choice.
It's barely been six months since the Broncos cornerback suffered an ACL tear in the Broncos' divisional playoff game, but he's already nearly back on the field. Harris is the only player to miss the Broncos' training camp opener due to injury, starting training camp on the team's preseason PUP list, despite participating in individual drills and describing himself as "pain-free"
Harris said he and the Broncos are playing it smart.
"It's tough right now, but it's smart right now," Harris said at the Broncos' first practice Thursday. "I did everything possible I could do as far as rehab and getting back, so I'm just ready to take the tests."
The tests to which Harris is referring will be those administered by Dr. James Andrews. Harris will travel to Dr. Andrews to have his knee examined again early next week. "I think I'll pass," said Harris, meaning he might be suiting up for practice as soon as next week. He expects he will wear a brace for the first weeks of practice, but will insist on not wear one during the game.
He's still on track to play in the Broncos' regular season opener, Harris said.
"That's definitely the goal, week one," said Harris. "Personally I don't want to play preseason, but if I'm ready I might play."
"It was time for playoffs, it was time to go, then yeah," Harris said. "Really I just put a helmet on."