A league source has confirmed that Visanthe Shiancoe returned to practice Tuesday.
The tight end was placed on the NFL's new short-term injured reserve on September 5. His ailment was never disclosed.
The "designated to return" rule allows a player to begin practicing again six weeks after being placed on IR; he is eligible to return to the Active List after the eighth week.
But there is a caveat: Shiancoe must be activated to the 53-man roster within 21 days or else remain on IR for the rest of the year.
ESPNBoston was first to report.