The Jets are moving closer to getting one of their most important defensive players back on the field.

Rush outside linebacker Quinton Coples who missed the first two games with a right ankle injury participated in position drills with the defensive line during the potion of Wednesday’s practice that was open to reporters. It remains unclear if Coples will be ready to play in Sunday’s home game against Buffalo.

Coples on Monday dressed for practice for the first time since reportedly suffering a hairline fracture during the Aug. 17 preseason game against Jacksonville. But on Monday Coples did not do position drill work. Instead he stayed on the sideline and performed footwork exercises with trainers. The Jets were off Tuesday.

Jets coach Rex Ryan has been pleased with his defense so far but said it’s important for the Jets to get Coples back. Coples played defensive end last season as a rookie and moved this season to the rush linebacker spot. Last season Coples led the Jets with 5½ sacks while starting two games. While he was sidelined with his injury Garrett McIntyre and Antwan Barnes split time at the rush linebacker spot.

Coples’ injury was reportedly expected to sideline him for three to four weeks. This Saturday will be the five-week mark since he sustained the injury which required surgery.