BOSTON (CBS) – The New England Patriots got some great news on the offensive side of the ball on Friday with Rob Gronkowski getting cleared by doctors, but they also got some good news on the defensive side of the ball as well.

Injured cornerback Aqib Talib returned to the practice field Friday morning after missing both Wednesday and Thursday’s sessions. He lightly jogged with teammates, but reporters noted he did not look like he was up to full speed.

Chances are Talib will not play on Sunday in New York, but with him out there on Friday the fear that his injury could be season-ending or a long-term issue diminishes slightly.

READ: Gronkowski Cleared By Doctors

The Patriots’ top corner injured his hip in last Sunday’s win over the New Orleans Saints, and sat out most of the second half. Talib has been near perfect in shutting down top receivers like Julio Jones and A.J. Green this season, and with Vince Wilfork and Jerod Mayo both lost for the season, losing the star corner for an extended period of time would be an even bigger blow to an improved Patriots defense.

While Talib hit the field, defensive lineman Tommy Kelly (knee), wide receiver Danny Amendola (head) and Leon Washington (ankle) were all out for the third straight day and probably won’t suit up on Sunday.

TALE OF THE TAPE: Patriots vs. Jets

The Patriots injury report is due out Friday afternoon, and should shed more light on Talib’s status for Sunday.



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