Recovering from a fractured hand, Saints running back Mark Ingram may be able to play in the Saints' game at Detroit on Oct. 19, Saints coach Sean Payton told CBS Sports Radio on Wednesday, according to ESPN.
Ingram broke his hand in a Week 2 loss at Cleveland, after which he was leading the Saints (2-3) with 24 carries for 143 yards and three touchdowns. He had surgery; and in his absence, second-year running back Khiry Robinson has shouldered much of the work in the rushing attack, tallying 61 carries for 304 yards and two touchdowns, including a game-winner in overtime at home in a 37-31 victory against Tampa Bay on Sunday.
Payton said Ingram's hand is still enveloped in a cast, but he believes he could play in a smaller, padded cast when the Saints visit Detroit after their bye this week.
"With the fracture that he had, which is right where the thumb and hand kind of go together, you gradually just reduce what he's having to wear," Payton said, via ESPN. "And he's probably, I would say, three or four weeks away from not having to wear anything. But right now, there's a chance he plays in the next game."
Payton didn't say much about the shoulder injury star tight end Jimmy Graham sustained against Tampa Bay, saying "he's doing fine" and that "the bye comes at a perfect time for him."
The Saints on Tuesday signed free-agent tight end Tom Crabtree, a former Green Bay Packer and Buccaneer, to add depth to the active roster.