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Bills announce Marquez Stevenson’s return to practice from injured reserve

Matt Warren is Associate Director of NFL coverage for SB Nation and previously covered the Bills for Buffalo Rumblings for more than a decade.

The Buffalo Bills on Tuesday announced that wide receiver/kick returner Marquez Stevenson returned to practice. Stevenson was placed on injured reserve at the start of the season, and has missed the first 11 weeks of the season. This news starts his 21-day window where the team has to activate him or he stays on injured reserve for the rest of the season.

The timing of the move is interesting. Stevenson has been working on the side with trainers for quite a long time during the season, meaning it’s likely he’s been healthy enough to come back for a while. With no roster spots to use on him, they let him keep up his conditioning and not practice. But now after a costly Isaiah McKenzie fumble in Sunday’s loss to the Indianapolis Colts and another muffed punt return earlier in the year, perhaps Stevenson’s activation is motivation for McKenzie or a sign they are looking to replace him.

Head coach Sean McDermott did not rule out activating Stevenson for Thursday’s game against the New Orleans Saints.

Stevenson was a sixth-round draft choice of the Bills in the 2021 NFL Draft. He caught 22 touchdown receptions and returned 34 kickoffs with three touchdowns in his collegiate career at Houston.