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Nick Mangold Expected To Play Sunday; Jets’ Plax Back At Practice

Nick Mangold (credit: Elsa/Getty Images)

Nick Mangold (credit: Elsa/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – Nick Mangold expects to return to his spot in the middle of the Jets’ offensive line this weekend.

That’s great news for Jets fans — and not so good for the Patriots.

Mangold was limited at practice again on Thursday, but the All-Pro center said he missed only “a handful” of snaps. He and coach Rex Ryan think he’ll play Sunday at New England.

“He’s got a great grasp of our system,” Ryan said of Mangold, who has missed the Jets’ last two games with a high right ankle sprain. “There’s a great comfort level with everybody that plays. You know where he’s going to be. That’s a huge plus for us.”

Rookie Colin Baxter had started in Mangold’s place, and was briefly pulled from the last game after a few miscommunications with quarterback Mark Sanchez.

“(Mangold) took a lot more reps today I think than anyone expected him to,” said guard Matt Slauson. “So that’s exciting.”

Meanwhile, Plaxico Burress was a full participant, a day after sitting out with a swollen left elbow. The wide receiver was injured during the Jets’ 34-17 loss at Baltimore last Sunday, and woke up around 3 a.m. Wednesday because of the sudden swelling.

Linebacker Calvin Pace (abdomen) was also limited, but is expected to play, and rookie defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson (shoulder) fully practiced a day after being limited. Linebacker Garrett McIntyre (concussion) did not practice, and his status for the game at New England is questionable.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)