Steelers Injury Report: James Harrison Eyes Return in Season Opener Against Denver

August 19, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Mike Adams (76) pass blocks against the Indianapolis Colts during the third quarter at Heinz Field. The Pittsburgh Steelers won 26-24. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Steelers LB James Harrison recently spoke on possibly returning from his knee injury to play in the season-opener at Denver Sept. 9.

Last Wednesday, Harrison had arthroscopic surgery to relieve swelling behind his knee and has yet to practice during training camp and remains on the team's physically unable to perform list.

The only injury of note in the Steelers second preseason game, a 26-24 victory over the Colts on Sunday night, was to rookie tailback Chris Rainey, who suffered a blow to the head during a play early in the first quarter and had to be assisted off the field.

He later returned to action after being evaluated for any concussion-like symptoms by the team's medical staff. According to this article from the Tribune Review, despite being momentarily unconscious after the hit, Rainey said that he was 'OK' after the game. However, since the NFL is now taking extra precautions regarding any head injuries, don't be surprised if Rainey undergoes more tests this week, which could determine his availability for the team's next preseason game.

There may not have been any major injuries during the game, however, injury news still made the headlines before the game when it was announced that back up linebacker Stevenson Sylvester suffered a torn MCL in his left knee during practice and will miss at least three to four weeks of action. Sylvester's injury is the latest in an offseason full of them for the Steelers linebacker corps.

LB Jason Worilds is also still on the PUP list as he continues to recover from offseason wrist surgery. It remains unclear when Harrison or Worilds will be activated and cleared for practice.

OT Max Starks, NT Casey Hampton and RB Rashard Mendenhall, all recovering from offseason ACL surgery, were removed from the PUP list last week, but all three sat out Sunday night's game.

On to the offensive line. In a bit of a surprise, rookie OT Mike Adams returned to practice late in the week despite suffering a sprained MCL in the preseason opener against the Eagles and saw action Sunday night against Indianapolis. Also, Willie Colon started and made his debut at left guard after missing the Eagles game with an ankle injury.

Isaac Redman, slated to take Mendenhall's spot to start the season, sat out the Colts game with a groin injury, but he did get good news when an MRI on Thursday revealed that his injury will not require surgery. Jonathan Dwyer, who suffered a sprained shoulder in the Eagles game, played against the Colts and, for the second week in a row, had a rather impressive run when he scampered for 23 yards on a play in the second quarter.

Finally, Steelers P Jeremy Kapinos, who had minor back surgery two weeks ago, sat out for the second game in a row as Drew Butler once again handled the punt duties.

As for the Steelers' opponents for Friday night's game, the Buffalo Bills, thanks to this fine report turned in by the Bills' SB Nation fan-site, I can tell you that the team's injury outlook is a little brighter than Pittsburgh's so far in the preseason. C Eric Wood is back and starting after suffering an ACL injury of his own last November, and there are no other major injuries to report so far.

As the Steelers prepare for their third preseason game Saturday night against the Bills, it still remains to be seen if players such as Starks, Redman and Hampton will play, but further news of their availability may be known before the team heads off to Buffalo later in the week.

Stay tuned for further injury news as the week progresses.

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