Aaron Hernandez returns to practice Thursday

FOXOBOROUGH — The Globe’s Shalise Manza Young reported that Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez returned to practice Thursday, giving rise to the remote possibility of his return for Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos at Gillette Stadium.

Hernadez suffered a serious right ankle injury in the home-opening 20-18 loss vs. Arizona Sept. 16 and was expected to be out 4-6 weeks.

Fellow tight ends Rob Gronkowski (hip) and Michael Hoomanawanui, who did not practice Wednesday, also returned for Thursday’s practice session in shorts and shells on the upper practice field behind Gillette Stadium.

Missing from the media-access portion of practice were S Steve Gregory, WR Julian Edelman and CB Ras-I-Dowling.

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