Safety Steve Gregory back at practice

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- The Patriots' injury-riddled secondary received a boost on Wednesday with the return of starting safety Steve Gregory to practice.

Gregory, who broke his right thumb on Nov. 3 against the Steelers, missed Monday's loss to the Panthers.

In addition, the top three cornerbacks on the depth chart -- Aqib Talib (hip), Alfonzo Dennard (knee) and Kyle Arrington (groin) -- were all present as they have all been hampered by injuries. It is likely that all three will be limited in today's practice, which is a tough spot to be with Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos coming to town.

Talib didn't finish Monday's loss to the Panthers, as he played 45 of 58 snaps (including penalties). The team announced he had sustained a hip injury, which appeared to happen on his final play, a pass breakup with 5:47 remaining.

Meanwhile, multiple reports indicate that Dennard is not expected to play Sunday night after undergoing a meniscus procedure on his knee. Dennard wasn't moving at his usual pace at practice today.

Also, Arrington was in and out of Monday's loss and appeared to be affected by the ailment on the Panthers' game-winning touchdown pass to Ted Ginn.

Every player on the Patriots' roster except for tight end Michael Hoomanawanui was present for the media-access portion of today's practice (reporters saw stretching and light agility drills). Hoomanawanui injured his left knee in the second quarter of Monday's loss.