Ben Roethlisberger's recovery from his torn meniscus appears to be going smoothly. Just over a week after undergoing an operation to repair his injured knee, Roethlisberger returned to the practice field.

On Tuesday, he participated in individual drills at the Steelers' practice.

Big Ben told 93.7 The Fan, a CBS Sports Radio station, that he's hopeful to return after the Steelers' bye week to face the Ravens.

"I'm always going to be hopeful and do everything I can ... to make sure that I get myself as prepared as I can be to go out there," he said, per CBS Pittsburgh. "Obviously, it's AFC North football, so I want to do everything I can to be out there with my guys."

And that matches CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora's report from Sunday, when he wrote that Roethlisberger could be back in time for the team's next game. Here's what La Canfora had to say:

Team officials are optimistic he could face the Ravens and would be surprised if Roethlisberger missed more than two games barring an unforeseen setback. It is conceivable Roethlisberger could play Week 9 even if he misses much of practice that week, and the team in all likelihood will see how he feels Friday and Saturday of that week before a final decision is made.

And now let's go back to Roethlisberger. When he was asked if he needed to practice before playing a game, here's what he had to say, per CBS Pittsburgh:

"Typically I would say no, but it would be nice because I need to know what I can and can't do. Mentally, no, I don't need it. But physically, just to know what I'm capable of doing ... I think in this situation it would smart to get a good, full practice in."

The good news is that he still has time to fully recover from surgery with the Steelers off this week. The bad news is that when he was asked if he thought it was "realistic" for him to play against the Ravens, he answered by saying they need to take it "a day at a time." He said pretty much the same thing when he was asked if he expected to practice next week.

So, we wait. If Roethlisberger isn't ready by next weekend, the Steelers will forced to ride with Landry Jones again. In their loss to the Patriots, Jones went 29 of 47 for 281 yards, one touchdown, and one pick.