After missing nearly one month of action with ankle and knee injuries, Minnesota Golden Gophers quarterback MarQueis Gray returned to the practice field on Sunday and remains in a limited capacity according to the Star Tribune's Phil Miller.
Gray originally suffered the injuries back in a Week 3 victory over Western Michigan on Sept. 15, and was unable to join his teammates at practice until Sunday. Gophers head coach Jerry Kill still did not want to fully endorse the idea of Gray playing this weekend against the Northwestern Wildcats, but did manage to elaborate a bit more about Gray's recovery at his weekly press conference.
"If we were playing tomorrow, he wouldn't be ready," Kill said Tuesday. "But we'll see how things progress. I would say we're cautiously optimistic that he can be available for some situations."
While the senior quarterback has been unable to suit up over the last few weeks, Minnesota sophomore Max Shortell has taken full advantage of his opportunity, with three straight impressive performances under center. Though he was intercepted three times in a loss to Iowa over the weekend, Shortell's strong play in relief could be a serious factor when Gray finally returns. With the Gophers set to enter the heart of their Big Ten schedule, however, there's no denying how beneficial it will be to get a playmaker like Gray back on the field.