Arden Key is not ready to play, LSU coach Ed Orgeron said Wednesday night, but that could change as soon as next week, the coach hinted.
Key, the Tigers All-American junior, practiced Wednesday without wearing a gold injury jersey for the first time this fall, continuing a newsworthy week regarding the school's single-season sack record-holder. On Tuesday, Key participated in live contact drills for the first time in camp.
"He's not cleared to play yet," Orgeron said Wednesday during his radio show. "Making progress every day. We'll find out more next week."
Key's quick progression this week is a good sign for his return. No. 12 LSU (1-0) opens Southeastern Conference play at Mississippi State (1-0) next week.
Key underwent shoulder surgery in May to repair an injury that lingered for much of last season. The injury is believed to be a rotator cuff issue, according to Key's teammates.
Arden Key's journey back to full health hit another benchmark Wednesday.
On Wednesday, Key wore a black brace on his left shoulder. He wore the brace late last season.
Key made his two biggest leaps this week after Orgeron foreshadowed the events Tuesday afternoon.
"He’s still waiting to be cleared for contact,” Orgeron said before reporters spotted Key at Tuesday's practice. “We’re going to do a little more with him today. Going to see what he can do. He’ll get a little more contact today as far as repetition. I don’t know if he’s full speed yet. We’re bringing him along. He’s not ready to play, hasn’t been cleared for a game yet.”
It’s a feeling Devin White gets.