Julio Jones misses practice with an illness

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith said star receiver Julio Jones was sent home Wednesday with an illness.

Jones was one of four Falcons to miss practice, along with receiver Harry Douglas (foot), cornerback Robert Alford (wrist), and offensive tackle Jonathan Scott.

Smith was optimistic when asked if Jones would return to practice Thursday.

"We certainly hope so," Smith said. "We hope it's a 24-hour bug and not a 48-hour. He was not feeling well, so we sent him home."

Jones leads the Falcons with 912 receiving yards on 67 receptions with three touchdowns. He hasn't scored a touchdown in the last seven games, which is the longest drought of his career.

Starting right guard Jon Asamoah (shoulder) was limited Wednesday, while defensive tackle Jonathan Babineaux (knee) and receiver Devin Hester (wrist) had full participation.

Outside linebacker/defensive end Jonathan Massaquoi, who had been dealing with a foot injury, did not show up on the injury report.