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Ryan Mathews not yet at running portion of MCL rehab

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Ryan Mathews sprained his MCL more than a month ago. The San Diego Chargers' running back has yet to reach the point in his rehab where he can start running.

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"I'm hoping," Mathews told U-T San Diego's Michael Gehlken. "I'm just taking it one day at a time. When they think it's time for me to start running, then it's time to start running. It's all in their hands."

The 27-year-old running back won't play this week and with a Thursday date against the Denver Broncos in Week 8, it's a stretch to think he'd be ready considering he hasn't hit the running portion of the rehab schedule. With a Week 10 bye, it could make sense for the currently 5-1 Chargers to hold the back out until after the week off.

One reason the team isn't pressured to rush Mathews back on the field is the emergence of rookie Branden Oliver, who has displayed quickness in space and toughness between the tackles. When Mathews eventually returns, the Chargers will have a dynamic 1-2 punch behind Philip Rivers.

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