Five months removed from a serious offseason knee injury, Alabama sophomore wide receiver Cam Sims could be back on the field in time for the team's season opener against Wisconsin on Saturday.

Sims, who tore his ACL during a spring practice, has been cleared by the team's medical staff, coach Nick Saban announced Wednesday. But that doesn't necessarily mean the coaching staff is putting him back the field in a live game just yet.

"We have not made a decision yet as to whether he’ll play in this game," said Saban, who also stated that Sims was close to returning to full speed. "I think that’s a decision I will like to make with him, even though he’s been cleared medically."

Two weeks ago, on Aug. 19, Saban said Sims had a "ways to go" in his recovery and that it was unlikely that he would play "any time soon," though he noted that the sophomore from Monroe, Louisiana, was ahead on his rehab schedule.

But as early as this past Monday, Saban seemed more optimistic about Sims' chances, saying the team would make a decision on his playing status for Wisconsin later in the week.

Sims returned to the practice field on Aug. 19, the first day of classes at the university, and has not worn a black, non-contact jersey during workouts for "several days now," Saban said.

When Alabama released its official team depth chart Monday, Sims was listed as a second-stringer behind sophomore ArDarius Stewart at one of the three wideout positions. Freshman Daylon Charlot was Sims' co-backup.

Prior to the injury sustained on March 28, Sims was among the favorites to claim one of the three starting wideout jobs vacated by departing players Amari Cooper, DeAndrew White and Christion Jones. In 12 games last season, Sims caught seven passes for 62 yards and one touchdown.