Rose obviously has to feel comfortable that he's ready to return, but the decision is not his alone.
"There's a lot of people that have to decide," Thibodeau said. "Obviously, he's the most important piece. From (chairman) Jerry (Reinsdorf) on down, everyone has to sign off on it."
Without Rose, the Bulls were sixth in the Eastern Conference at 34-27 heading into Friday's game against Utah. They were also missing several other key players, with Thibodeau saying Taj Gibson (knee), Kirk Hinrich (foot) and Richard Hamilton (back) would not play against the Jazz.
As for Rose's return, the wait continues.
"There are a lot of kids out there that would love to see Derrick Rose come back and play," teammate Nate Robinson said. "He's a role model. Everybody looks up to him, including my kids. My son asks every day, 'Dad, when's Derrick coming back?' I'm like, 'I don't know.' It's funny. Derrick's sitting right next to me on the flight, so when I Skype my son, I take a little peek. He's like, 'There he is, let me talk to him.' I'm like, 'You can't talk to him, just let him be.' But (Rose) is working extremely hard, and that's one thing I definitely respect about him. He's very humble and he works extremely hard in the game that he loves."
AP freelance writer Travis Miller contributed to this story from Chicago.