METAIRIE, La. — Drew Brees pulled a football out of his locker inside the New Orleans Saints’ training headquarters and wrapped his right hand around it, splaying his surgically repaired thumb away from his forefinger.

The demonstration of how far he’s progressed in his rehabilitation since his Week 2 injury left no doubt about his intent to tell Coach Sean Payton he’s ready to play this Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.

“That’s the plan,” Brees said. “I’ll tell Sean if I’m ready – and he’ll believe me.”

Brees affirmed that he threw the ball well at practice Wednesday but added that he wants to see how he performs throughout the week in team drills to ensure his accuracy, timing and overall effectiveness meets his standards.

“I need some competition,” Brees said.

Brees said that, technically, his thumb won’t be fully healed until he’s three months out of surgery, which was performed on his ulnar collateral ligament in Los Angeles on Sept. 18. But Brees noted that a surgically inserted internal brace provides enough support for him to grip the ball firmly now, five weeks later.

JETS: Kelechi Osemele is having surgery on his injured right shoulder – whether or not the team approves it.

The veteran left guard and the team are in a standoff in which Osemele says he needs the season-ending operation now and is waiting for the team to authorize the procedure on his torn labrum. The Jets, however, believe he can hold off and play through the injury.

Osemele flew to Boston on Tuesday to receive a third medical opinion and was examined by orthopedic surgeon Dr. Glen Ross, who informed him that his shoulder injury is “pretty bad.”

“It’s torn off the bone,” Osemele said, adding that Ross recommended he have the surgery immediately. Osemele told General Manager Joe Douglas on Tuesday that he would be going forward with the operation.

“He was upset,” Osemele said.

Osemele said the team doctor recommended he could play through the injury with pain killers and a brace, and an independent doctor in California – through a review of the MRI – recommended surgery only if the symptoms dictated it. A person with direct knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press last Friday that both doctors determined it is a pre-existing injury and cleared Osemele to continue playing through it – and hold off on the surgery.

The Jets have been fining Osemele for conduct detrimental to the team for not practicing after missing Saturday and now Wednesday’s sessions. Osemele said he is being docked the maximum allowed under the collective bargaining agreement: $579,000 per week, which is the amount of his game checks.

Osemele said he and his agents have filed a grievance against the Jets and had a conference call Monday with the NFLPA to discuss the situation. He believes he’ll get the money back eventually.

The Jets haven’t commented publicly on the situation.

n Jets are concerned linebacker C.J. Mosley could be dealing with more than just a groin injury.

Coach Adam Gase says team doctors are doing a “really deep dive” on what’s ailing the playmaking middle linebacker. Mosley played Monday night against the Patriots for the first time since straining his groin in the season opener, but clearly wasn’t 100 percent.

Gase wouldn’t speculate what else might be ailing Mosley, who signed with the Jets as a free agent in the offseason.

FALCONS: Coach Dan Quinn says quarterback Matt Ryan is hopeful he’ll return from a sprained ankle to play Sunday against Seattle.

As expected, Ryan did not practice Wednesday. Quinn says the team “will have a better sense” of the quarterback’s status for Sunday’s game on Friday.

CHIEFS: Coach Andy Reid was unwilling to rule out quarterback Patrick Mahomes from the upcoming game against Green Bay, even though it’s been less than a week since the reigning league MVP dislocated his kneecap in a victory in Denver.

The initial thought was that Mahomes could miss up to six weeks, but X-rays and an MRI exam returned the best possible result. So while the Chiefs are moving ahead as if Matt Moore will be under center against the Packers, the starting job may not be his as long as expected.

CHARGERS: Left tackle Russell Okung will make his season debut Sunday at Chicago.

Okung has been recovering from a pulmonary embolism caused by blood clots.

CARDINALS: Arizona signed Alfred Morris and Zach Zenner to add depth at the banged-up running back position.

LIONS: Detroit signed running back Paul Perkins, adding much-needed depth at the position after Kerryon Johnson was placed on injured reserve because of a knee injury.

TITANS: Kicker Ryan Succop has been designated to return from injured reserve, allowing him to return to practice.

Succop was put on injured reserve Sept. 4, as he needed more time to recover from offseason surgery on his kicking leg.

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