ENGLEWOOD, Colo. –After missing the past four games with a foot injury, cornerback Champ Bailey feels he's getting closer to making his return this week at Kansas City.
Bailey sat out the first five games of the season with a foot injury before reinjuring the foot at Indianapolis in Week 7.
The patience required to let the foot heal is something that hasn't come easily for the 15th-year veteran.
"That's the hardest thing for me," Bailey said. "Any time something goes wrong, I want to be in there to try to help. But, I have to make sure I take care of my body. The foot is feeling a lot better. I'm going to keep progressing through the week to make sure that I'm ready for Sunday."
Bailey returned to practice on Wed., Nov. 13 and has been limited in each session since. He was listed as doubtful for the Week 11 game versus Kansas City and then questionable for Week 12 at New England.
This week, he said his prognosis could be more positive.
"I feel like barring any setbacks, I'll be out there," Bailey said. "That's the way I'm preparing myself this week – to play. And if nothing goes wrong, I'll be there."
Bailey has been listening to the doctors' advice as well as his own body as he rehabilitates the foot. That has meant easing his way back on to the field and making sure he doesn't re-injure the foot by playing before it's ready.
"Yeah – obviously, I'm going to be the better judge out of anybody just because I feel it," Bailey said. "I feel like it is good to go and one thing about our doctors – they are pretty good about knowing when I'd be back, and they pretty much guessed around this time. So, I'm pretty pleased with my progress and just trying to get better every day."
While that hasn't been easy, given his nature, he knows patience is what is best for the long-term.
"That's pretty much who I am. I'm always competitive like that," Bailey said. "But, obviously I have to make sure I'm 100 percent before I think I'm going to do anything like that. I have to take care of my body first."