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NFL notes: Redskins’ RGIII practices, will reclaim starting job

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Robert Griffin III returned to practice Wednesday for the Washington Redskins, and coach Jay Gruden confirmed that the third-year quarterback will regain the starter’s job when he’s pronounced ready.

Griffin threw passes in individual and one-on-one drills in his first work since he dislocated his left ankle Week 2.

“Once they say he’s healthy and he practices with us, and we feel like he’s ready to go mentally and we have a good game plan for him, then he’ll be the starter,” Gruden said. “But I don’t know when that will be yet. It’s hard for me to project. It could be one week, two weeks. It could be five weeks.”

Griffin wore cleats with high ankle support and looked a bit rusty. His first pass hit fullback Darrel Young on the back of the shin, but he also had some good throws during the one-on-ones when defensive backs were covering receivers.

Griffin took the first snap in each of the drills early in the practice, ahead of current starter Kirk Cousins

“He looked fine. He’s got a little bounce in his step,” Gruden said. “Everything else is going to be up to the trainers and the doctor. There’s nothing I can do as far as rushing him back.”

Griffin isn’t expected to play until Nov. 2 against Minnesota at the earliest. A more likely scenario has him back Nov. 16 against Tampa Bay following Washington’s bye week.

Griffin was hurt early in a 41-10 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sept. 14. The Redskins have since lost four straight with Cousins, and Gruden suggested for the first time that he might turn to third-stringer Colt McCoy if Cousins continues to struggle.

Around the league

Oakland cornerback DJ Hayden practiced for the first time since breaking his foot in June. … Tampa Bay fullback Jorvorskie Lane has been suspended for two games without pay for the violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. … Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict has been fined $25,000 for his actions during a game against Carolina. … Titans tight end Craig Stevens had surgery to repair a torn quadriceps tendon and will likely be placed on injured reserve. … Dallas running back Joseph Randle won’t be suspended after his arrest on a shoplifting charge. … San Francisco QB Colin Kaepernick’s $11,025 fine from the NFL for what a game official called “inappropriate language” during a loss to the Bears was cut in half. … The NFL sent a newsletter outlining basic facts about the Ebola virus to all team doctors and trainers for distribution to players/staff.

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