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Vick Back on Practice Field

November 13, 2003|From Associated Press

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. — He worked with the scout team. He kept his running in low gear. There were no dazzling moves, no 70-yard passes.

Still, this was a significant breakthrough.

Michael Vick was back.

The Atlanta Falcon quarterback practiced Wednesday for the first time since breaking his right leg in an exhibition game, raising hopes that he'll soon be ready to play. He has set Nov. 30 in Houston as his target.

"I think I handled it pretty well," Vick said after the two-hour practice. "Toward the end, it got kind of sore on me. But that's what I expected. That's a good thing."

The rest of the team was already on the field when Vick trotted out from the locker room, wearing his No. 7 jersey and carrying his shoulder pads. At least a dozen cameramen and photographers documented every step.

Practice was uneventful. Vick served as the third-team quarterback behind Kurt Kittner and Doug Johnson, which meant working with the scout team and backups.

At times, Vick appeared to be favoring his leg, and he didn't show off his celebrated running skills. Still, the Falcons were glad to have him back.

"I didn't have any expectations because I really didn't know how much he could do," Coach Dan Reeves said. "I was definitely pleased that he did as much as he did."

Vick can't get back soon enough for the Falcons (2-7), who have slumped badly without their Pro Bowl quarterback. Last year, they reached the second round of the playoffs.

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