Bills' Watkins leaves practice; Fred Jackson returns

The Bills running back returned to practice on Wednesday for the first time since suffering a groin injury in Week 7, per the team.

The setback was initially expected to keep Jackson sidelined for up to four weeks, but he did light work on Tuesday before returning to action today. The 33-year-old back ran with the starters in warmups and looked nimble on his feet in footage released by the team.

Jackson's availability for Week 10 will be more clear after Thursday's session. With C.J. Spiller not expected back before the season finale -- if at all -- Jackson's return would boost a ground game that saw Anthony Dixon pile up just 44 yards off 22 carries in Buffalo's last tilt, a 43-23 win over the Jets in Week 8.

The Bills' offense later took a hit when rookie wide receiver Sammy Watkins suffered a groin injury and left practice, accoording to WGR-550. Watkins did not finish practice but NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday that it was a precautionary move and the injury is believed to be minor.

Here's the rest of Wednesday's injury-related news:

  1. Anxious Lions fans will be happy to hear that Calvin Johnson told reporters he will play this week against the Dolphins after being hampered the last few weeks by a high ankle sprain. Coach Jim Caldwell confirmed he anticipates Johnson playing. Megatron was a full participant in practice, along with Reggie Bush (ankle), and LaAdrian Waddle (concussion), according to the team.
  1. Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo didn't practice in London on Wednesday but did go through a brief walk through. Romo received treatment on his injured back at the Cowboys' hotel during practice. Along with Romo being out, linebacker Rolando McClain (knee/groin) and defensive tackle Nick Hayden (shoulder) didn't participate in practice. Linebacker Anthony Hitchens (chest) was limited. Update: Romo practiced Thursday.
  1. Eagles running back LeSean McCoy isn't practicing due to an illness, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. He should be back tomorrow and ready for Monday night's game against the Panthers.
  1. Bucs linebacker Lavonte David (knee) and defensive end Michael Johnson (hand) were among those that were limited during practice for Tampa Bay on Wednesday. Running back Charles Sims (ankle) was also limited.
  1. Jaguars tight end Marcedes Lewis (ankle) was a full participant in practice, though he's still on the IR-recall list. Wideouts Cecil Short and Marqise Lee were both limited as quarterback Blake Bortle continues to lead a team without all of their best offensive options.
  1. Aaron Rodgers was a full participant in practice for the Packers, which supports coach Mike McCarthy's claim Tuesday that the quarterback "looked good."
  1. The Bengals' injury report has running back Giovani Bernard (hip/clavicle) listed as doubtful for Thursday after he did not practice Wednesday. Linebacker Vontaze Burfict (knee) was ruled out, as well as cornerback Leon Hall (concussion).
  1. Browns tight end Jordan Cameron (concussion) was ruled out for Thursday's game while wideout Andrew Hawkins (thigh/knee) did not practice and is deemed questionable to play.
  1. The Ravens had a few starting offensive linemen out of practice on Wednesday. Center Jeremy Zuttah (ankle) and guard Marshal Yanda (knee) both did not participate. Zuttah told the Baltimore Sun his injury isn't serious.
  1. Giants running back Rashad Jennings (knee) and defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka (knee) did not participate in practice.
  1. Jets receiver Percy Harvin is with a new squad, but injury problems have seemingly followed him to New York from Seattle. Harvin was limited in practice with a heel injury.

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