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Devin Hester out; Nick Williams, Eric Weems took return reps in practice

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Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

It's a beautiful day in Flowery Branch, and spirits seemed high in the locker room and on the practice field as the team continues to prepare for their season debut against the Eagles on Monday Night Football.

Prior to practice, Dan Quinn told the media that the team would emphasize third downs in today's practice.

Quinn also told the media that Brooks Reed would not be practicing as he continues to recover from groin surgery. Reed is going to be out for a few weeks, so this isn't surprising. Quinn said the team would give Devin Hester (toe) some limited work today and see how it went. Hester worked with the athletic performance staff on a side field.

With Hester not participating in team drills, Nick Williams and Eric Weems took return reps in today's practice. If Hester is unable to go on Monday, it will be interesting to see who takes over return duties. My money's on Weems, but they kept Williams on the roster for a reason.

Dan Quinn spent some time working on-on-one on technique with O'Brien Schofield. It's emblematic of the level of investment Quinn has in this team and these players. His hands-on approach is pretty unique.

Julio Jones is ridiculous to watch, even when he's just playing catch with Roddy to warm up before practice gets going for the receiving corps.

There is media availability tomorrow, so I'll be at practice, and we'll have a better idea of Hester's status at that time. I'll also include a reader Q&A in tomorrow's practice notes, so ask your questions in the comments, and I'll get to as many of them as I can tomorrow.