JACKSONVILLE – Aaron Colvin felt as he expected this week.
That's a good thing for the third-year cornerback as he prepares for his first game of the 2016 regular season, and it could be a really good thing for an already effective Jaguars secondary.
Colvin, who spent the first four games of the regular season suspended for violating the NFL's performance-enhancing-substances policy, said he has felt few aftereffects from the time off during the first two full days of practice this week.
Colvin returned to practice Monday and was moved to the active roster Tuesday. He is expected to play the nickel against Chicago Sunday, and he expects to be fully ready.
"That's it right now – yes, sir," Colvin said as the Jaguars (1-3) prepared to play the Bears (1-4) at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois, Sunday at 1 p.m. "I never had a real transition. It was just getting my wind back and getting comfortable back in the defense, but I feel good.
"I know what I can do, but it's good to get in the swing of things and go compete."
Colvin, a fourth-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft, played six games that season after returning from a torn anterior cruciate ligament sustained in the Senior Bowl the previous January. He started 15 of 16 games last season, particularly excelling while in nickel situations.
Colvin's 4.0 sacks last season were the most by an NFL defensive back since 2011, and he and rookie Jalen Ramsey are perhaps the best blitzers among Jaguars defensive backs. Colvin during preseason was overall playing at a level at least on par with Prince Amukamara, who is expected to start Sunday opposite rookie Jalen Ramsey on the outside.
Colvin spent his suspension in Dallas working daily with secondary specialist Ronnie Braxton and watched Jaguars games to stay abreast of the defense. Though he wasn't allowed contact with coaches, defensive coordinator Todd Wash this week said Colvin was at a high level in terms of mental grasp of the defense upon his return.
"I just wanted to show my teammates and show my coaches I stayed prepared," Colvin said. "I wanted to be mentally sharp. I wanted my movements to be clean. I knew there would be a process of getting comfortable guarding other players, but it feels good.
"I feel like I'm there. Wednesday was a little curveball. Today [Thursday] I felt good. Sunday, I should feel awesome."
BACK AT IT
Free safety Tashaun Gipson returned to practice a limited basis Thursday a day after missing practice with a knee injury sustained against the Colts in Week 4.
Leo defensive end Dante Fowler Jr. was added to the injury report Thursday with an illness, but Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley said Fowler will play Sunday. Wide receiver Rashad Greene missed practice with an Achilles injury that Bradley said is "a little bit of a concern."
"That's going to be a day-to-day deal," Bradley said.
Tight end Neal Sterling also missed practice with a foot injury, while running back Corey Grant (toe), tight end Ben Koyack (knee) and defensive tackle Roy Miller III worked limited for a second consecutive day. Koyack has been out the last two games.
Defensive end Jared Odrick (triceps), tight end Julius Thomas (elbow) and tight end Marcedes Lewis (hip) all worked full for a second consecutive day. Odrick missed the last two games before the bye and Thomas missed the last game before the bye.
CLOSER AND CLOSER
Running back Chris Ivory continues to move closer to full health, with Bradley saying Thursday the veteran running back has made "really big strides" in recent days. Ivory, who signed with the Jaguars as an unrestricted free agent in the offseason, missed the first two games of the regular season with a general medical issue and he has rushed for 43 yards on 20 carries in two games since. He also has dealt with knee and ankle issues since his return. "I feel a lot better," Ivory said. "The knee feels more stable than it was. Right now, I'm just doing everything I need to do to continue to get healthy."
"When you don't hear a lot about explosive runs and explosive plays up the chute, that's a credit to him because he has a big part in that. So if you don't hear his name a lot, as far as that's concerned, it's a good thing."
--Bradley on Gipson
"A big part of [quarterback] Blake [Bortles'] development is that our run game is efficient and productive. When we can do that it certainly takes a lot of pressure off of Blake, so we can do the things that he is very good at – which includes the play-action pass and allow us to get some of those chunk plays again. That is the direction we are heading. … We understand the importance of running the football in order for this offense to be efficient."
--Jaguars offensive coordinator Greg Olson