Patriots quarterback Cam Newton and cornerback Stephon Gilmore were back at practice Thursday, providing a lift to a team that has largely been sidelined the past two weeks by COVID-19.
Gilmore’s presence indicates he was activated off the team’s COVID-19 reserve list Thursday morning. Newton was activated on Wednesday. Practice-squad defensive lineman Bill Murray was also present, meaning he’s also been returned from COVID-19 reserve.
Defensive tackle Byron Cowart, defensive lineman Deatrich Wise and practice-squad tight end Paul Quessenberry were the only players absent.
Cowart remains on the team’s COVID-19 reserve list after testing positive last weekend. Wise was listed as a non-participant on Wednesday’s projected injury report for non-injury reasons.
It remains unclear why he’s been away from the field, though it’s possible he may be in isolation after being deemed a high-risk close contact of Cowart’s.
Thursday’s session was only the Patriots’ second practice in the last 13 days and first in the past five.