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Bailey Returns as Full Practice Participant

Posted Oct 9, 2013

For the first time all season, cornerback Champ Bailey practiced fully.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – For the past three weeks, cornerback Champ Bailey has been a limited participant in Broncos practice.

On Wednesday, Bailey practiced in full with the team as they began on-field work to get ready for this week’s game against the Jaguars.

“With Champ obviously we’ve been smart,” Head Coach John Fox said. “Medical people have done a fantastic job. He had a very, very good workout today.”

That “very good workout” included an interception according to safety Duke Ihenacho.

Quarterback Peyton Manning has seen plenty of Bailey in the training room as the 15th-year cornerback has worked his way back onto the field. Manning said it was good to see the veteran back out on the field at practice.

“I know, from a team standpoint, it’s great to see number 24 back out there,” Manning said. “I know how hard he’s worked to get healthy and to get back out there. I know he’s tried to be smart about it and at the same time, trying his best to get out there in a hurry. As a team, we’re certainly glad to have him back.”

Bailey is coming off a Pro-Bowl season in which he played all 16 games and finished with 66 tackles and a pair of interceptions.

Wednesday was a good time to get him back as three defensive starters missed practice with injuries. Bailey’s co-defensive captain, linebacker Wesley Woodyard was out with a neck injury, defensive end Robert Ayers missed practice with a shoulder injury and cornerback Chris Harris didn’t practice as he continues to recover from a concussion.

The younger members of the secondary are excited to have their captain back out on the practice field with them.

“It felt good. You could just kind of tell the difference with communication with him,” Ihenacho said. “He’s a veteran. He’s seen every play in the book. He sniffs out plays better than I’ve seen anybody sniff out plays. It’s really going to help us out because he can just, like I said, sniff out plays. He really gives us a heads up before the play happens so everybody plays faster.”