Bills RB Fred Jackson made his long-awaited return to practice Wednesday, but it didn’t appear to go as well as he hoped.

Jackson participated on a limited basis for the first time since suffering a knee sprain in the team’s Week 1 loss to the New York Jets. Afterwards, he was asked if it went as expected or if he was a little disappointed.

“A little bit of both,” Jackson said. “There were some things that I liked, but there’s a lot of stuff that I’ve got to work on, too. So it’s a good thing we got a week so we’ll see how it goes. Just going to hopefully continue to get better and work on the things I feel I need to.”

Asked to elaborate, Jackson responded: “Some of the cutting and adjusting to guys coming at me and being able to get in and out of that, it didn’t go as clean as I wanted it to. So [it’s] something else to work on and hopefully it’ll get better.”

Jackson said it wasn’t just a pain issue and that it had more to do with feeling mentally and physically confident moving on the knee. He wore a brace on his right knee at practice and will continue to do so for the near future.

“There’s some pain there, but I think just the strength of it is what it is, just being able to have trust in it to where I can plant on it and get out of a cut like I used to before I hurt it,” Jackson said.

Said coach Chan Gailey: “We’ll see how much he can do and see where he is after practice. The first practice and tomorrow morning will be the key -- after he goes through some football stuff today.”

The Bills could really use Jackson for Sunday’s important divisional game against the New England Patriots given the uncertain status of C.J. Spiller. Spiller, who burst on the scene in Jackson’s absence with an NFL-best 292 rushing yards through two games, did some light stretching and worked mostly off to the side with a trainer at Wednesday’s practice. He suffered a left shoulder injury on Sunday against Cleveland. The Bills have not ruled him out for Sunday’s game, however.

“We’re hoping we’ll get him a few reps by the end of the week,” Gailey said. “Don’t know, we’ll see.”

If neither player can go against New England, fifth-year pro Tashard Choice will get the first start of his Bills career. Choice did a solid job in Week 3 after Spiller went down, rushing for 91 yards on 20 carries. But Choice isn't a true game-changer like Jackson or Spiller.

For more updates on the Bills, follow correspondent Mark Ludwiczak on Twitter @CBSBills and @MarkLud12.