FOXBORO, Mass. — Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo made a surprising return to practice Friday, less than two weeks after injuring his knee against the Raiders.
Initial prognostications expected Mayo to miss four to six weeks with an MCL injury, so it's definitely not a lock that he'll play Sunday against the Cowboys. However, Mayo only missed three games after suffering a separate MCL injury in 2009, which marked an earlier return than expected.
The Patriots will be on their bye next week, so Mayo could be targeting a Week 8 return, which would be four weeks after he was hurt in Oakland.
Running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis (toe) and defensive lineman Vince Wilfork (not injury-related) returned to practice after missing Thursday's session. Wilfork said he had to take care of a personal matter and will be ready to play Sunday.
Safety Josh Barrett (hamstring, thumb) and cornerback Phillip Adams were missing from practice. However, after re-signing Thursday, it's possible Adams was released because the Patriots had an unidentified defensive lineman at Friday's practice.
Safety Josh Barrett (hamstring, thumb) was the only player missing from practice. Prior to the session, the Patriots released cornerback Phillip Adams, who re-signed with the team Thursday, and added defensive tackle Marcus Harrison to the active roster. Harrison debuted at practice and wore No. 90.
The Patriots practiced for the 20th time during the regular season, not including walkthroughs, and they were in shorts and shells for the 15th time. The practice was held inside Gillette Stadium for the second straight day.