Ryan also basically ruled out Tebow assuming his role as the punt protector for this week. So, it appears his role would be more limited than usual if he does play.
Tebow was injured at Seattle on Nov. 11, and played three offensive snaps the following week at St. Louis. He was active but Ryan kept him on the sideline — to be used only in "an emergency" — against New England after the quarterback convinced the coach he could play following a pregame evaluation.
Despite being medically cleared, Tebow was inactive last Sunday against Arizona because he still wasn't completely healed. Tebow said Wednesday he would have another set of X-rays, likely later in the week, to see how the healing is progressing.
Ryan has been pleased with what he saw from Sanchez since announcing that he would remain the starter for at least this week.
"He's had an excellent week of practice," Ryan said. "I see a lot of energy from him. I see him bouncing around and you can tell he feels good. I think he feels good about the plan, and I think he's confident."
Sanchez is looking to bounce back in a big way following perhaps the worst stretch of his NFL career. He has two touchdowns, five interceptions and two lost fumbles in four games — and his first NFL benching — since the team's bye-week break last month.
"He has pulled himself up before in situations," Ryan said. "But I think his competitiveness (will help him) and he understands, you just have to go out and play the position and do it to the best of your ability, believe in your teammates and I think that's it. Protect the football. That's all we're asking him to do. Play the position, do what you do, but protect the football."
Sanchez will likely be without his favorite target this week in Keller, who was hurt late in the opening half against Arizona. Keller is second on the team with 28 receptions, but backup Jeff Cumberland has been solid this season with 21 catches for 233 yards and two touchdowns — including the one he caught from McElroy last week.
"I'm really happy with the way Jeff Cumberland has progressed," Ryan said. "We expected him to get better, but you see it, really, as a blocker but even as a receiver. He's made some nice catches for us and things, so we're fortunate to have Jeff behind us."
Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL