The 27-year-old flyhalf, who has had injuries to his neck, shoulder, biceps and knees, was selected Monday for Saturday's match against Scotland to open the Six Nations championship at Twickenham.
Rugby league convert Andy Farrell will make his test debut for England at inside center, while Jason Robinson has been named on the left wing after coming out of international retirement since 2005.
It will be Brian Ashton's first test as coach of England after he replaced Andy Robinson late last year.
"It is well documented that I have been an admirer of Andy's career for a number of years and I'm looking forward to seeing him play rugby union for his country," Ashton said. "I'm also pleased that Jason Robinson has decided to return from international retirement, and that Jonny Wilkinson has returned to fitness after his recent injury and that both are available for the Scotland game."
Wilkinson has just returned for his club Newcastle after 12 weeks out with a lacerated kidney, and outside of him he'll have the 31-year-old Farrell, who has only started seven rugby union games, reports AP.
Ashton has also picked World Cup winner Mike Tindall at outside center and included former captain Martin Corry at No. 8. Current skipper Phil Vickery will lead his first England team at tighthead prop.
There are 11 changes from the last team that lost 25-14 to South Africa on Nov. 25 England's eighth defeat from its last nine tests that resulted in Robinson quitting.