ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Retirement proved to be temporary for Percy Harvin, the once-dynamic playmaker and former Florida star who is back in the NFL and returning to Buffalo to reinforce the Bills' injury-depleted group of receivers.
Using the past six months to rest his mind and rehab numerous injuries that led him to walk away from football in April, Harvin was back on the practice field Tuesday, shortly after signing a one-year contract.
"It felt good, just the smell of the grass again, the smell of the pads when I walked in the locker room," he said. "Man, when you're away from it, you miss so much of those things."
Then, breaking into a smile as beads of sweat dribbled down his forehead, he added: "The time I took, it was well needed. But it was time to go back to work."
Harvin returns to the team he essentially walked out on a year ago, when he elected not to travel overseas for Buffalo's game at London. He blamed that decision on the frustrations he felt being in constant pain from a knee injury that was also affecting his hip. He has had trouble staying healthy, including issues with migraines, dating to his days with the Gators.
Limited to five games last season, Harvin, 28, had 19 catches for 218 yards and a touchdown before being placed on the season-ending injured reserve .
He said he had knee surgery in January and spent much of his time off working out. The only question mark is when Harvin might be ready to play.
"We'll see. I think I could," Harvin said, when asked if he might be available to play Monday night, when the Bills travel to play Seattle. He cautioned he wasn't going to rush back and risk being hurt, even if it meant missing a game against one of his former teams.
Replay controversy: A replay malfunction prevented a review of a fumble that resulted in the Panthers' first touchdown against the Cardinals, the Associated Press reported. The call would have been overturned to an incomplete pass had the equipment been working, according to the report.
Eagle charged: Eagles wide receiver Josh Huff was charged with possession of a 9 mm handgun without a permit and having a small amount of marijuana after he was pulled over for speeding, according to a court complaint. He was pulled over on the New Jersey side of the Walt Whitman Bridge around 11 a.m. Tuesday. It wasn't immediately clear if Huff had posted his $25,000 bail.
Pro Bowler suspended: Washington left tackle Trent Williams, a four-time Pro Bowl pick, was suspended four games for violating the league's substance abuse policy. It's his second four-game ban; he tested positive multiple times for marijuana during the 2011 season.
Chiefs: Running back Jamaal Charles went back on injured reserve with swelling in his surgically repaired right knee, AP reported.
Jets: They claimed Knile Davis off waivers from the Packers, then made plans to cut him hours later when they reached an agreement with C.J. Spiller. New York plans to sign Spiller today, the Associated Press reported, and will release Davis, the former Chiefs running back released by Green Bay on Monday.
Lions: Defensive end Armonty Bryant was suspended three games for violating the NFL's policy on substances of abuse.
Vikings: Coach Mike Zimmer was recovering from what the team called a "minor medical procedure" the morning after Minnesota's 20-10 loss at Chicago. Zimmer's regular day-after-game news conference was canceled on Tuesday.