Vernon Davis returns to practice

Tight end Vernon Davis returned to the practice field Thursday after missing last week's game with back spasms.

After missing last week's 22-17 win over the Chiefs with back spasms, tight end Vernon Davis took to the practice field Thursday in a no-contact blue jersey.

It was an encouraging sign for Davis, who did not practice last week leading up to the game against Kansas City.

Davis has had a tough time staying on the field this season after suffering an ankle injury in Week 2's loss to the Bears that kept him out of the following game in Arizona. Davis returned to play the Eagles, but was tackled awkwardly and left in the second half while dealing with back spasms.

Dating back to the start of last season, the 49ers lost both games Davis didn't play. But that mini-steak ended with Sunday's win over Alex Smith's Chiefs.

San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh is hoping to have his Pro-Bowl tight end back in action for Monday night's game against the Rams.

"We'll see, we're taking it day-by-day there," he said Thursday.

With the additions of Stevie Johnson and Brandon Lloyd to the receiving corps, the 49ers have had four different pass catchers lead the team in receiving through five games. Anquan Boldin is the team's only wideout to do so twice. Davis, Johnson and Michael Crabtree all have two touchdown catches this season.

Anthony Davis misses practice

Meanwhile, right tackle Anthony Davis, who the Sacramento Bee reported has a sprained MCL, was not on the field at the start of practice Thursday, and appears unlikely to play in St. Louis.

Davis returned in Week 4's game against the Eagles, but had his left leg rolled into late in the first quarter and did not return to the game. Jonathan Martin, who started the previous three games in Davis' place while he dealt with a hamstring strain, will likely make his fifth start of the season.

Harbaugh says Osgood's return is "imminent"

Kassim Osgood could be back with the 49ers this week, after being released for the third time this year Wednesday to make room for the addition of Bubba Ventrone.

"It's imminent, hopefully," Harbaugh said.

Harbaugh wouldn't say if a player on the 53-man roster would go on injured reserve to make room for Osgood.

"We'll just have to let the transactions speak for themselves. I'm hopeful a plan working out that will help the football team," Harbaugh said.

There does not appear to be a candidate to be put on injured reserve, making it likely third quarterback Josh Johnson could be on the wrong side of Osgood's eventual addition back to the roster. Johnson has been released and signed once already this season to add tight end Asante Cleveland prior to Week 3's game against the Cardinals.

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