Bears running back Marion Barber, sidelined the last 17 days with a left calf muscle injury, is expected to return to practice Wednesday.
Smith said "soon" when asked what the timetable is for Barber's return, and it's too early to predict Barber's status for the Saints.
But if practice goes well this week, Barber could be in uniform at the Superdome. Barber looked good during the preseason, and the Bears added him with an eye toward using him at times in short-yardage and goal-line situations.
"He's had a little bit of time off of it," Smith said. "Hopefully he'll be ready to go."