Notre Dame hasn't played since Nov. 24th, when the Irish knocked off USC 24-17 at the LA Coliseum to wrap up their undefeated season. By the time kickoff comes against Clemson in the Cotton Bowl on Dec. 29th, it will have been over a month since the Irish last played meaningful football.
For fans, that wait can be excrutiating, but for Jafar Armstrong, that month off has been bliss.
Armstrong burst onto the scene in Week 1, rushing for two touchdowns in the win over Michigan. Since then, he's been battling injuries. A knee infection that required surgery right before the Stanford game sidelined him for three weeks.
Once he came back from that injury, he tweaked his ankle in his first game back against Navy, and showed little of that explosiveness that made him so dynamic early in the season.
Now though, he has had time to rest and recover, and Armstrong is eager to prove he's back to his Week 1 form.
"Being out three or four weeks, I'm ready to go," Armstrong said. "I'm going to tell coach I'm not tired, being out, you're eager to go back, so as many plays as you can get, I'm going to take."
"He's healthy finally," Irish head coach Brian Kelly said. "You know, he was running with no arch really in that foot. I mean, he was no push, no arch, no explosion. He's back to where he was. We think he's back to where he was earlier in the season."
Armstrong will get the chance to prove it running against one of the best defenses in the country in Clemson.
The Irish take on the Tigers with a trip to the National Championship on the line, Saturday, Dec. 29th at 4pm.