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Antonio Cromartie returns to practice field for Jets

New York Jets defensive back Antonio Cromartie (31)

New York Jets defensive back Antonio Cromartie (31) warms up wearing an altitude training mask before a game against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, Sept. 13, 2015. Credit: Lee S. Weissman

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Antonio Cromartie was on the practice field Wednesday, just three days after he hyperextended his left knee in the Jets' Week 1 win over the Cleveland Browns.

Granted, the veteran cornerback didn't do much.

Donning a Jets baseball cap and shorts, Cromartie stretched alongside his teammates. But when players broke into their respective groups for individual and positional drills, he went straight to the rehab area. At the end of the 20-minute portion of practice allotted to the media, Cromartie stood on an adjacent field catching footballs from the JUGS machine.

On Monday, Cromartie underwent an MRI which revealed no ACL tear in his left knee. Instead, the Jets announced that he suffered a knee sprain. He has not yet been ruled out for Monday night's game at the Indianapolis Colts.

The 10-year vet has missed one game in his career: the final regular-season game of 2010, when Rex Ryan rested his starters against the Bills with a playoff berth already clinched. And it seems like Cromartie already is preparing himself to get back on the field quickly.

"He was saying that he can't miss any practices and he's going to try to be out there as soon as possible," rookie Leonard Williams said earlier this week.

However, Jets head coach Todd Bowles said he's going to be cautious with Cromartie.

"I don't want to rush him back anyway," said Bowles, who was Cromartie's defensive coordinator in Arizona in 2014. "The fact that we have a bunch of guys there that can play definitely helps out a lot though."

Rookie outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin was not on the practice field Wednesday because of a concussion. The third-round pick was carted off the field Sunday and taken to a hospital after he was injured in the fourth quarter.

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