DeCastro injured his ankle badly enough in the Steelers' 21-18 loss to Oakland he couldn't return, even if that meant the Steelers had no offensive linemen left healthy, and Kelvin Beachum had to move to left guard so Cody Wallace could take right guard, putting Mike Adams at left tackle.
No fan base in the NFL knows its offensive line depth chart better than the Steelers, but when eight of them play in a game, with three of them having played at least two positions in that game, things are a tad ridiculous.
This says nothing of the fact DeCastro has been the team's best lineman so far this year. He's blocked well on the ground, and in pass protection. While the results against Oakland - one of the league's better run defenses - were not outstanding, there was optimism, as this patchwork unit began jelling together.
Maybe that hope isn't over.
The usually surly DeCastro limped away from reporters after the game, and was scheduled to have an MRI Monday. No word has been mentioned of the results. Considering the player - the most lauded first-round draft pick in decades, the pony the Steelers got for Christmas in April of 2012 - it seems hard to think the worst news possible wouldn't have been leaked by now.
Maybe he won't miss any time at all, and he'll spend the next five days rotating between ice and heat, compression and elevation, resting all the while, enveloping the R.I.C.E. model like every weekend warrior athlete does. Maybe he'll get real treatment that uses an acronym weekend warriors do not know. That will, in turn, make him capable of playing at his now usual high level.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is likely to discuss his status, as well as that of Guy Whimper (knee) and Ramon Foster (concussion) at his press conference at noon Tuesday. If the best kept secret in town is that of DeCastro's demise, and the Steelers officially end the streak of mild health the offensive line has had (after the first seven games this year) fans will curse the team's luck, wish DeCastro - who's already beginning to show the high-level potential he has after 10 career starts - all the best as he truly becomes a Steelers offensive linemen.
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- DeCastro injury could hinder teamwork development among offensive line
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