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49ers' Aldon Smith returns to practice

The SportsXchange

Four important 49ers players returned to practice on Monday after not making the trip for the team's preseason loss to Houston on Saturday, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Linebacker Aldon Smith (hip), tight end Delanie Walker (knee), linebacker Ahmad Brooks (undisclosed) and cornerback Perrish Cox (undisclosed) were all on the field Monday.

The most significant of those was Smith, who seemed likely to miss more time after he sustained his injury in a preseason game 10 days earlier. He had 14 sacks last season and was scheduled to be an every-down player this season.

Whether the four participated in the entire practice is unknown because the 49ers closed the practice to the media after the team drills.

Running back LaMichael James (ankle) did not practice Monday despite his assurances after getting injured on Saturday that he would practice Monday.

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