Four of the most difficult weeks of Joselio Hanson's life are behind him now.
"I compare it to when I got released by the 49ers, and I was out for the whole year," the Eagles cornerback said yesterday before his first practice since returning from a four-game suspension. "It was even worse because it was something so innocent. It was tough."
The NFL suspended Hanson for violating the league's drug policy. David Cornwell, the lawyer representing Hanson, said the cornerback tested positive for a diuretic after the Eagles' NFC championship loss to the Arizona Cardinals in January. Cornwell said Hanson felt bloated after eating Chinese food before the game and took a pill that turned out to be a diuretic.
Hanson said the thing that bothered him most was that Minnesota defensive tackles Pat and Kevin Williams and New Orleans Saints defensive ends Will Smith and Charles Grant never were suspended, even though they also tested positive for diuretics. Court decisions that remain unresolved forced the NFL to rescind four-game suspensions against the four players.
"If everybody had been suspended, then I'd have had to sit and take it," Hanson said. "I know I have to be more careful. That's the one thing I can do for myself."
He said the first week of his suspension was the most difficult because the Eagles had also lost cornerback Ellis Hobbs to a season-ending neck injury.
"The first week was the roughest," Hanson said. "The shortage of guys, it was fresh in my mind and there was anger. But as the weeks went on, I just had to let it go and move on."
Hanson said he tried to stay in shape by running 60-yard sprints with 25-second breaks in between to simulate plays.
"You can't really simulate football out there by yourself," he said. "I'm going to be tired, but I'm going to fight through it."
No practice for Maclin
Rookie receiver Jeremy Maclin sat out practice because of plantar fasciitis in his foot. He also has a sprained shoulder, but coach Andy Reid said the foot is a bigger problem.
"He should be fine for the game," Reid said. "But for the next couple of days here, we are going to pull off of him practicing."
Offensive tackle Jason Peters practiced after suffering a bruised shoulder Sunday against Atlanta. He also was listed as having a head injury, but tests indicated he did not have a concussion.
Akeem Jordan also was a full participant at practice after missing the team's last four games with a knee injury. Jordan said he worked with the first-team defense, but Reid said he wasn't sure how the linebackers would line up at the start of Sunday's game against the Giants.
"There is a good chance that Jordan will be in the mix," Reid said. "We have to see how he holds up."
Sitting out practice were linebackers Tracy White (sprained shoulder) and Joe Mays, who was ill.
The Eagles signed fullback Joel Gamble and re-signed wide receiver Jordan Norwood, both to the practice squad. Gamble replaces fullback Marcus Mailei, who was signed to New Orleans' active roster. Gamble played tight end at Shippensburg and has played fullback and linebacker in the Arena Football League 2 and the American Indoor Football Association.