SAN DIEGO - San Diego Chargers linebacker Manti Te'o did not use a walking boot Tuesday after wearing one on his sprained right foot since Aug. 9, although he hasn't been cleared to practice.
"It's a big step for me to take that boot off and see where it goes from there," said the rookie linebacker from Laie, Oahu. "It's a boost of confidence. Taking the boot off shows that it's getting better, so I'm really excited about it."
Te'o said the team trainer will decide if the boot's off for good.
Manti Te‘o’s status for the San Diego Chargers’ regular-season opener on Sept. 9 is uncertain.
"Yeah, it feels good enough for me to take it off and walk around," Te'o said. "It's up to him if he wants to put it back on."
Te'o said he wore the boot at all times, except when sleeping.
"It was hurt bad enough to hold me out for three preseason games," said Te'o, who was in for nine plays in the exhibition opener against the Seattle Seahawks on Aug 8.
The Chargers finish their exhibition season Thursday against the San Francisco 49ers. San Diego coach Mike McCoy did not rule anything out about Te'o's availability for the team's regular-season opener on Sept. 9 against the Houston Texans.
"That's going to be up to how his body recovers the X number of days before the game on Monday night," the coach said. "We'll want to have an idea of how he feels, obviously. He knows his body better than anybody else."