TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — There is a sense of confidence in Greg McElroy’s typical walking motion.
But Monday, there was somewhat of a limp in the stride entering the media room. The Alabama quarterback was still a little sore coming off Saturday’s 24-20 win at Arkansas. So is one of the Crimson Tide’s star defenders, but the story is similar in Florida.
The Gators have their share of injured playmakers most notably leading rusher Jeff Demps who suffered a sprained foot Saturday against Kentucky but is expected to play this week in Tuscaloosa.
McElroy’s injury isn’t one that leaves his status for the Gators in peril, but does lead to discomfort. The soreness in his plant foot (right) was traced back to the fourth-quarter sack on the 16-play drive that resulted in a field goal.
“Yeah, this thing’s pretty sore,” he said. “It actually felt better yesterday as opposed to today, I think, because I had a shot after the game, an anti-inflammatory shot. It was like a 48-hour type of dose. I’ll be fine. It’s gonna be a little ginger on it the first few days. It’s gonna be pretty painful.”
McElroy appeared to practice without a limp during the brief media viewing period Monday, but it was a different story for defensive end Marcell Dareus.
His right ankle was heavily taped after taking a shot on it late in the first half Saturday. Dareus returned and played in the second half and was wearing a walking boot afterwards.
Coach Nick Saban said Dareus would be limited Monday and hopes to have him back at full strength by Wednesday. He had a noticeable limp during practice and he didn’t participate in the drills during Monday’s viewing period.
The issues are more serious for Demps although Meyer was relieved to learn there were no broken bones in the foot.
Demps’ 367 rushing yards lead the team by a healthy margin since Mike Gillislee’s 143 yards ranks second.
Even if Demps doesn’t play Saturday, Saban doesn’t expect to see anything different from the Gators.
“(Demps) is a good runner and has great speed on the perimeter, probably the likes of which we have not seen, but I think their entire team does, and they have some other backs that are very capable guys as well,” Saban said.
Rainey settles, won’t play
The latest legal saga for a Florida Gator was settled Monday, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be on the field Saturday evening.
Receiver Chris Rainey’s felony charge of stalking was reduced to a misdemeanor in a Monday plea deal that calls for him to complete 10 hours of community service or donate $100 to a domestic violence center. He’ll also receive counseling for anger management and domestic violence after his Sept. 14 arrest for sending an ex-girlfriend a threatening text message.
Though his legal issues are all but resolved, the former starter isn’t back in Meyer’s good graces.
Rainey is still “not part of the team,” Meyer told reporters in Gainesville on Monday.