To say it was a welcome sight for his offensive teammates may have been an understatement. Veteran Josh Reed, for the first time in better than 10 days, practiced with his teammates after suffering a lower back injury.
"You can tell by the smile on my face I'm really happy to have him back," said Trent Edwards. "I'm not going to play favorites when it comes to receivers, but he's in my top five. I'll leave it at that."
"Josh is a good player and we're depending on him to make plays for us," said Dick Jauron. "He knows how to play the game at this level. He's tough. He's a good blocker for us. He runs after the catch. We're anticipating really big things from Josh."
For Reed, who caught close to a half dozen passes Sunday night, stepping back out onto the field after a somewhat lengthy layoff went better than he anticipated.
"Working with the trainers they did a really good job and it was really like I never missed a day as far as how I was feeling," said Reed. "It felt great to be back out there."
Reed initially sustained the injury, a bruised pelvis, in practice which was near the area where he has undergone offseason back surgery.
"It was something that made it flare up," said Reed of the bruise. "It wasn't a direct hit that I took on it and it wasn't even the back. It was below the back and it felt more muscular than actually the spine."
Though Reed was concerned he felt the pain he was feeling was different from the back pain he experienced late last season prior to undergoing surgery. Reed actually took another hit in the same general vicinity in the Sunday night practice and is hopeful it doesn't become a problem again.
"I just have to make sure I stay with the treatment and what the trainers are doing with me and just keep an eye on it," said Reed.
Edwards has played all of 10 games with Reed, but through the course of last season and this offseason the veteran wideout has become a security blanket for the young quarterback.
"Josh is a special guy and when he's healthy he helps the quarterback position out a lot," said Edwards. "I know when plays break down Josh is a guy you can turn to and get open in those situations."
And being that guy that can help bail a quarterback out on a busted play is what was eating at Reed, particularly after watching the offense click in their last preseason outing against Pittsburgh.
"I think that really, really sparked me," said Reed. "Just to watch that game and you could see the improvement, it was so drastic from the first game to the second one. Of course when you see something like that you want to be a part of it even more."