- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 23, 2017

ASHBURN — Redskins tight end Jordan Reed returned to practice Wednesday, his first session back after spending training camp and the first two weeks of the preseason on the physically unable to participate (PUP) list.

Reed, who is recovering from an injury to his left big toe, did position drills and some 1-on-1 drills in the portion of practice open to reporters. Reed was activated from the PUP list on Sunday.

Reed said he feels “100 percent” and wants to play Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals in the Redskins’ third preseason game.

“I think it’s real important just to feel some hits and live bullets at me and things like that — get my feet under me,” Reed said. “I think it’s really important.”

Redskins coach Jay Gruden answered “yeah” when asked if there’s a chance Reed would play against the Bengals. The game against Cincinnati could be his only time on the field before the regular season begins. Starters usually rest in the last preseason game.

“Well it’s important. It’s not critical, but it’s important,” Gruden said of Reed playing in the preseason. “I’d like to get him back out there and get in the running game a little bit, get involved and obviously catch a couple passes. But, if he’s not feeling up to it at that time on Sunday afternoon, then so be it. … Still, you’d like a player to get some involvement in a game before we play a real one.”

At one point during practice, Reed stopped to adjust his cleats, taking out the special orthotic insoles he’s said have helped cushion his toe so that he can run and cut comfortably.

Reed said he doesn’t feel any restrictions in his movements. He is able to cut and run without thinking about his injury.

“Yeah, I’m pretty confident right now in my toe,” Reed said. “The training staff and (head strength and condition coach) Chad (Englehart) did a real good job with me in allowing me to get 100 percent so i feel pretty good.”

Typically, preserving his health would be the top priority and Reed would either sit or receive very limited work. If he’s used often, it could be because Gruden wants to get the offense up and running smoothly after two shaky performances from the starters.

Reed also has to rediscover his timing with quarterback Kirk Cousins. Reed said the two put in extra work Tuesday and Wednesday to catch up.

Cousins said it was great to have the team’s whole offense together for the first time Wednesday. Reed, Cousins said, creates matchup issues for opposing defenses and they tend to be in the tight end’s favor.

“Fortunately, some of these guys have played a lot of football and I’d like to think any rust that would be there is going to be gone by Week 1,” Cousins said. “I’m optimistic, but I think we still need to get the rust off between now and then. I don’t think it’s fully off yet.”

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