Oct 22, 2013, 1:20 PM EST
Tommy Rees has been cleared to practice and will be on the field this afternoon with the Irish, Brian Kelly announced during his weekly press conference. The senior quarterback was pronounced day-to-day on Sunday by Kelly after a sack last weekend knocked Rees out of the game with a high hit, but has progressed nicely after the team’s day off.
“We’re moving forward that he will be the starter,” Kelly said. “Knowing that it’s Tuesday, we feel a lot more confident that Tommy will be prepared and ready for Saturday.”
Rees returning to the practice field quells any immediate quarterback concerns for the Irish at quarterback, with both Andrew Hendrix and Malik Zaire getting more reps this week, just in case. The focus will be on making sure that Rees is ready to go, but also getting Hendrix up to speed after a disappointing performance on Saturday.
“He’ll get the first two or three reps, to make sure he’s functioning properly,” Kelly said of the Rees’ practice workflow. “Then we’ll pull him out and Andrew will get first team reps. It’s just making sure he is functional and progressing during the week. As long as he looks good on Thursday, we move into Saturday without any hesitation.”
The Irish will be facing an Air Force defense that’s 118th in the country this weekend, a nice break after facing five defenses in the top 30.