LSU coach Ed Orgeron expects starting wide receiver Terrace Marshall and right guard Damien Lewis to play in the national championship game.
The two key contributors to LSU's record-breaking offense returned to practice Wednesday for the first time since sustaining injuries in the College Football Playoff semifinal, and Orgeron said they should both be ready when No. 1 LSU (14-0) plays No. 3 Clemson (14-0) on Monday at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
"I expect both of them to play," Orgeron said Wednesday afternoon.
Marshall is "a little bit further ahead" in his recovery than Lewis, Orgeron said.
Marshall appeared to sustain a minor injury in LSU's 63-28 win over Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl on Dec. 28, and Orgeron said at the time that he should be "OK by the beginning of next week."
The 6-foot-4, 200-pound sophomore has been a crucial part of LSU's passing attack, catching 43 passes for 625 yards and 12 touchdowns. The Tigers had to play without Marshall for three games in the middle of the season, while he recovered from a fractured foot he sustained against Vanderbilt.
Lewis was seen after the Peach Bowl in crutches and wearing a boot on his left foot.
Marshall and Lewis both participated in LSU's indoor practice Wednesday afternoon. The Tigers practiced without pads, just in jerseys and shorts, but it offers some promise of recovery ahead of LSU's biggest game of the season.
Both of Lewis' ankles were heavily taped on Wednesday. Adrian Magee, who moved from left guard to right guard after Lewis' injury, continued to work with the first-team at right guard during Wednesday's drills.
Lewis did one-on-one drills in the background with true freshman guard Kardell Thomas, who is recovering from an ankle injury that's kept him out the entire season.
Reserve lineman Ed Ingram continued to work at starting left guard in place of Magee.
Orgeron said Lewis worked out Tuesday and Wednesday, running straight ahead on his own.
"I think the cutting is the thing he's going to have to get used to," Orgeorn said. "But it's only Monday of the game week."