Chris Ivory says he is healing nicely from surgery

When we last saw the New Orleans Saints on the playing field, they were down to about their eighth-string running back as injuries ripped through the depth chart of the defending Super Bowl champions.

One of the impressive young members of that larger-than-you-would-like group is on the mend. Chris Ivory says he is recovering nicely from surgery to repair a Lisfranc ligament in his foot. Although he cannot rehabilitate at the team’s facility during the lockout, he is out of a walking boot and in good spirits.

“It has gotten a lot better," Ivory said, according to James Varney of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “I'm to the point now where I can put a little more pressure on it, but that pressure is still -- I'm still hesitant to put a lot on it, to where it's like I'm walking normal. I still have a little ways to go.

“They went in and put a screw through one of my bones, and, I believe, they connected it with my next toe. That's supposed to help it align, to line the bones and the ligaments back up, and at my last checkup everything was aligned perfectly.”

Ivory’s hope is that he can begin running in about a month. He figures into the team’s plans significantly for 2011. The Saints were able to reach a contract extension with Pierre Thomas, who was also injured last season. Thomas figures to form a 1-2 punch with Ivory and the Saints are expected to attempt to re-work a contract for Reggie Bush. Ivory led the team in rushing with 716 yards last season.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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