Skip to main content

Chargers LT Rashawn Slater Shares Where He's at Physically, Completes First Practice Since Biceps Injury

Rashawn Slater is making progress towards a return.

COSTA MESA – Chargers left tackle Rashawn Slater was designated for return from injured reserve on Tuesday, opening up his 21-day practice window. Wednesday marked Slater's first practice with the team since late September.

Slater, the 23-year-old blindside protector for quarterback Justin Herbert, suffered a biceps injury in Week 3 that required surgery. In explaining what transpired on the field that day, Slater said he knew something was wrong when he felt a pop in his arm that felt unlike anything he'd experienced.

"I felt it," Slater said of his torn bicep. "I felt a pop that I'd never felt before. I knew it was serious and they diagnosed it pretty quickly. Just kind of a freak thing. A play I've done a million times and I guess I just hyperextended it and my bicep popped."

Slater knew the recovery process would be a lengthy one. He valued the importance of having a strong mindset to get him through the dark times of rehabbing his injury.

As Slater began his trek back towards full health, he saw two options on the table. One being to get a jump on the offseason and another being to prepare himself for a potential opportunity to play in the postseason.

"I knew I had to have a good mindset if I was going to be able to come back," Slater said. "My vision was that I was going to come back at a higher level than when I left. I think that just fueled me to work as hard as I could to be here now."

Slater took in his first practice on Wednesday since the injury, participating in individual drills on a limited basis. Following the practice session, he shared how it felt to get back out there.

"It's hard to say because I haven't had a chance to go full speed yet," Slater said of where he's at physically. "But in the weight room, I'm getting really close. That's why I got cleared to go out – I was within 10 percent from my left side to my right side, so it's getting there."

Slater won't play Saturday against the Jaguars, but when asked if he could give it a go in the Divisional Round if the Chargers advance, he indicated that remains up in the air.

"I'm not sure yet," Slater added. "We're kind of just slowly working my way back into it. So we'll see how it goes. But I'm just taking it day-by-day at this point."

During his time away, Slater said he's been diving into film study, doing self assessment to improve his game for when he's ready to slide back in at left tackle.

*Get your Chargers tickets from SI Tickets by clicking here

Read more from Charger Report:

Nick Cothrel is the publisher of Charger Report. Follow Nick on Twitter @NickCothrel for more Chargers coverage.