Alex Waller got 40 minutes under his belt as he made his return from injury at Kingston Park on Monday night.
Waller broke his arm against Newcastle Falcons back in early December and had suffered some setbacks while on the comeback trail.
But he was handed a start for the Wanderers and played the first half against the Falcons second string before being replaced at the break in the 37-12 defeat.
Tries from Will Allman and Matt Beesley were in vain as the Wanderers' winning start to the Prem Rugby A League season ended.
The Saints second string were targeting a 10th successive bonus-point victory, but Newcastle proved too strong on their own turf.
One score from Ben Stevenson, two from Zak Kibirige and a penalty try helped the home side to the win.
But Waller's return was the big news for Northampton, who have already booked a home semi-final in this season's A League.
Newcastle Falcons: Penny; Kibirige, Waldouck, Mermoz, Stevenson; Socino, Elliott; Brocklebank, Blamire, Ilnicki, Cavubati, Davidson; Burrows, Chick, Hogg.
Replacements: Blackett, Mavinga, Payne, Davies, Graham, Cowell, Matavesi, Wacokecoke.
Wanderers: Foden (Estelles 56); K Pisi, Dingwall, Stephenson, Collins (Elliott 62); Grayson, Kessell (Emery 56); Waller (Trinder 40), Clare (Fish 62), M Collins (Beesley 61); Moon, D Onojaife; Ludlam, Ryan, Eadie (Allman 56).