COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) — Keenan Allen returned to the Los Angeles Chargers' practice field on Wednesday, raising optimism that the wide receiver might be able to return for Monday night's game against the Denver Broncos.
Allen has missed the past four games because of a hamstring injury he suffered during the first half of the Sept. 11 opener against the Las Vegas Raiders. He did some drills during the individual period of Wednesday's practice.
“We’ll be able to test it out and see how things are going,” coach Brandon Staley said. "The plan was to not put him out there until he was ready to ramp his way back up. He’s been feeling better. At least he will be able to get out there, in his helmet, and go do some football stuff.”
Allen missed only three games from 2017-21. This is the most games he has missed in a season since a knee injury in the 2016 opener sidelined him for the rest of that season.
Allen has at least 95 receptions in each of the past five seasons (2017-21), good for the second-longest streak in league history. He has a TD catch in three of the past four games he's faced Denver.
Mike Williams has picked up the slack during Allen's absence with 100-yard games in three of the past four games. Williams is sixth in the AFC in receiving yards (392) and tied for ninth with 28 receptions after having a career-high 10 catches for 134 yards in last week's 30-28 win at Cleveland. Williams did not practice on Wednesday because of illness.
“They bring us a lot of challenges to the table. Obviously, they have great receivers within the offensive scheme," Broncos cornerback Pat Surtain II said on Tuesday about Allen and Williams. "They both make plays, and they are tremendous playmakers on their own.”
Offensive right tackle Trey Pipkins III (knee) also did not practice, but Staley said that they are hopeful Pipkins can practice on Friday.
AP NFL: https://apnews.com/hub/nfl and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL